Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Crossing the Threshold of Hope (2)

John Paul II. Ed. Vittorio Messori. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. 1994.

Why read it? Well, it isn’t easy to read. But John Paul II was a great human being and his ideas are worth considering. The purpose of the book is to answer questions that people have about the Catholic religion and about other religions as well. Some important questions, I’m afraid, remain unanswered, at least to my satisfaction.

Sample Ideas and Quotes:

“What is the meaning of suffering, of evil, of death, which persist despite all progress?” p. 30.

“…hermeneutics…explores the meaning of symbolic language….” p. 35.

“…the approach of Saint Thomas, for whom it is not thought which determines existence, but existence…which determines thought.” p. 38.

“In the Enlightenment…man was supposed to live by his reason alone, as if God did not exist.” p. 53.

“…the crucified Christ is proof of God’s solidarity with man in his suffering.” p. 63.

“All individual and collective suffering caused by the forces of nature and unleashed by man’s free will—the wars, the gulags, and the holocausts…also the holocaust of the black slaves from Africa.” p. 63.

“Why…hasn’t He eliminated—and does He persist in not eliminating—suffering from the world He created?” p. 64.

To be continued.

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