Mardi le 10 octobre 2006
Religiously-warranted irrationality is a lethal threat to the future of civilization "Whoever knows the Old and New Testaments, and then reads the Koran, clearly sees the process by which it completely reduces Divine Revelation. It is impossible not to note the movement away from what God said about himself, first in the Old Testament through the Prophets, and then finally in the New Testament through His Son. In Islam, all the richness of God's self-revelation, which constitutes the heritage of the Old and New Testaments, has definitely been set aside. "Some of the most beautiful names in the human language are given to the God of the Koran, but He is ultimately a God outside of the world, a God who is only Majesty, never Emmanuel, God with us. Islam is not a religion of redemption. There is no room for the Cross and the Resurrection. Jesus is mentioned, but only as a prophet who prepares for the last prophet, Muhammad. There is also mention of Mary, His Virgin Mother, but the tragedy of redemption is completely absent. For this reason not only the theology but also the anthropology of Islam is very distant from Christianity." John Paul II, "Crossing the Threshold of Hope" - In other words, there isn't a millimeter of difference between John Paul II's substantive evaluation of Islam and Benedict XVI's. John Paul II was a master of the public gesture; but to read from his public gestures of respect for Islamic piety an agreement with Islam's understanding of God, man and moral obligation is to make a grave mistake. John Paul II would have completely agreed with Benedict XVI's critique, at Regensburg, of a theology that reduces God to pure will, a remote dictator who can command the irrational (like the murder of innocents) if he chooses. And, like Benedict XVI, John Paul II knew that such misconceptions can have lethal public consequences, because all the great questions of the human condition, including political questions, are ultimately theological. Benedict XVI bears the burden of the papacy at a historical moment in which religiously-warranted irrationality is a lethal threat to the future of civilization. He and his predecessor have the same view of the sources of that irrationality.
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