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The Blind Faith Beliefs Of The Secular Culture

Posted by on May. 12, 2014 at 7:16 PM
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2 moms liked this

Neither Left Nor Right, But Catholic . . . The Blind Faith Beliefs Of The Secular Culture

May 12, 2014

By STEPHEN M. KRASON

(Editor’s Note: Stephen M. Krason’s “Neither Left nor Right, but Catholic” column appears monthly [sometimes bimonthly]. He is professor of political science and legal studies and associate director of the Veritas Center for Ethics in Public Life at Franciscan University of Steubenville. He is also co-founder and president of the Society of Catholic Social Scientists. He is the author of several books including The Transformation of the American Democratic Republic [Transaction Publishers: 2012], and most recently published an edited volume entitled Child Abuse, Family Rights, and the Child Protective System [Scarecrow Press: 2013]. This column originally appeared in Crisismagazine.com. All rights reserved.)

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Secularists are known for dismissing religion as merely espousing a set of blind faith beliefs without any evidence to support them. The crudest among them will often do it in a snide and sneering way, holding that religious belief is imagination and fantasy — like a childhood fairy tale — in contrast to the “scientific” view that they espouse.
Actually, they betray themselves as the truly ignorant ones. First, they pay no attention to the “evidence that demands a verdict” — to use the title of a noted apologetic book — about Christianity and the internal consistency of its teaching. They just want to explain away obvious manifestations of the Divine.
As Pope St. John Paul II once said, the Church is not afraid of the truth; she readily subjects herself to a searching examination of the validity of her claims.
Second, evangelical secularists embrace a narrow, incomplete definition of “science” as just involving empirical study. They can’t fathom that philosophy is also a science, which operates from evidence and sound reasoning. They seem unaware of how non-empirical, essentially philosophical, principles stand behind their own perspective. They also can’t grasp that other principles that they embrace — such as a defense of human rights and a rejection of racism — could not possibly be derived from empirical science.
Third, they don’t even understand what philosophy actually is. Both the evangelical secularists and those in American institutions who have reflexively embraced their mindset — like the public school officials who think that, say, chastity education violates the separation of church and state — can’t distinguish philosophy from theology. They seem unaware of such basic philosophical principles as causality and of the capabilities of human reason unassisted by Revelation to approach the Divine. One readily thinks here of Aristotle’s philosophical proof of the existence of God and, for that matter, of an order of beings between God and man (what Christians and Jews call the angelic).
Even as the secularists and the culture they have shaped scorns religion — and especially Christianity — as blind faith, one is awestruck by the catalog of their own blind faith beliefs. These are beliefs that often have no basis in the empirical science they claim to be devoted to, and sometimes even defy reason. We can find such blind faith beliefs everywhere in the secular culture. Christians have even unthinkingly accepted some of these because they have heard them so often. Here are some of the most obvious ones.
It is a given that there is global warming, to say nothing of the fact that its primary cause has to be the activities of people. This is in spite of the fact that in many areas we see very cold winters, colder than in previous years, and the historical record indicates that there are periods when average temperatures rise a bit and others when they go down. For the global warming enthusiasts, the actual weather, or the buffer of atmospheric phenomena like cloud cover, make no difference. We are just supposed to trust their computer models (even though this is supposed to be science, somehow conclusive empirical research really isn’t necessary).
What I call the “grand theory of evolution” — that man evolved from lower life forms — is an obvious example of a blind faith belief, again wrapped in the mantle of science. There is a hierarchy of scientific certitude: When a certain amount of evidence has been gathered but there is still considerable room for alternative explanations, we have a hypothesis; when the level of proof is considerably greater and the room for alternative explanations shrinks, we reach the level of a theory; when the evidence is indisputable and the realities clear, we have a law (such as gravity).
People routinely call evolution a theory, and the evolutionists treat it essentially as a law. Frankly, with all the holes in the “grand theory,” the best that we could call it is a hypothesis.
Related to this is the age of the earth. It is taken as a given by writers, teachers, journalists, commentators, and the like that the earth is billions of years old. Maybe this is correct, but the view that this is a certainty and that the scientific means to determine it airtight is simply untrue. The fact is that empirical research can go only so far in establishing something like this and the grand theory of evolution; there is a lot of judgment and, frankly, guesswork involved.

The Realm Of Fantasy

On sexual and family matters, we see a range of blind faith beliefs that has profoundly influenced American life. One of these is that sexual activity, so long as it’s carried out by mutual consent and birth control is used, has no consequences — even for minors.
Closely related to this is that contraceptives are 100 percent reliable and, further, have no health consequences for women (abundant research suggesting the opposite is simply ignored). A similar blind faith belief is that women can resort to abortion without any likely physical or psychological effects (even serious regrets or guilt).
Yet another blind faith belief is that it doesn’t make any difference what kind of family situation a child grows up in, so that not only is divorce not a significant issue — despite resounding recent social science evidence to the contrary — but two “parents” of the same sex is also no big deal.
Indeed, homosexualism has spawned such blind faith beliefs as that same-sex attraction is intrinsic from birth — again, the evidence clearly points otherwise — and even that there is a “gay gene” (this is completely in the realm of fantasy).
Both homosexualism and feminism have generated the belief that men and women are completely interchangeable, and that the only fundamental difference between them is biological. Even the biological difference between men and women diminishes in importance because of another blind faith belief of the secular culture: that sex can actually be changed surgically or even by simply decreeing oneself to be of the other sex (even though every cell in a male body continues to have a Y chromosome).
One of the most basic blind faith beliefs of secularists, tied up especially with sexual morality, is that so-called “personal morality” in no way affects social morality. So, they effectively claim — contrary to all human experience — that there is a “rigid wall of separation” between the individual and the life of a culture.
Another is that an egalitarian ethos and public policies based upon it will not adversely affect human incentive and achievement.
One of the most obvious of blind faith beliefs is in politics: the notion of uninhibited democracy embraced by Western secular culture believes that a mass of untutored voters — who may have very little citizenship or even moral formation — can necessarily make good and intelligent political choices (this is quite different from what the likes of Aristotle, our Founding Fathers, and Tocqueville thought).
From the classical liberal side of the secular culture, there is the longtime blind faith belief that economics works by rigid laws — as opposed to simply acknowledging tendencies such as supply-and-demand that reflect human nature — that work automatically for human good (the “invisible hand”). This Enlightenment-generated perspective ignores the fact that nothing happens automatically and helped sever ethics from economics and ushered in the one-time reign of social Darwinism.
These examples of secularist blind faith beliefs are just the tip of the iceberg; one could probably think of many more. The point is: Blind faith characterizes secularism, not true religion.

by on May. 12, 2014 at 7:16 PM
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Replies (1-10):
LucyMom08
by Gold Member on May. 12, 2014 at 7:19 PM
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What exactly are "obvious manifestations of the divine" that many of us seem to be missing?
LucyMom08
by Gold Member on May. 12, 2014 at 7:20 PM
14 moms liked this
By the way, the BS in this "article" is so ridiculous it's actually hilarious...rather sad for this man, though...he must not get out much...
snookyfritz
by Platinum Member on May. 12, 2014 at 7:22 PM
1 mom liked this
I'm not a fan of his tone, but part of his message is good. Outside the nutty idea that Capitalism is a righteous Godly state, he made some good points. I abhor his use of adjectives. He came off as self-righteous as he portrayed others
jllcali
by Jane on May. 12, 2014 at 7:22 PM
2 moms liked this
That guy sounds crabby. He spent the whole piece trash talking. He is obviously writing from inside a bubble. He doesn't seem to realize that a bubble also distorts the view.
Clairwil
by Ruby Member on May. 12, 2014 at 7:25 PM
10 moms liked this


Quoting 12hellokitty:

Editor’s Note: Stephen M. Krason’s “Neither Left nor Right, but Catholic” column appears monthly [sometimes bimonthly]. He is professor of political science and legal studies and associate director of the Veritas Center for Ethics in Public Life at Franciscan University of Steubenville. 


Secularists are known for dismissing religion as merely espousing a set of blind faith beliefs without any evidence to support them. The crudest among them will often do it in a snide and sneering way, holding that religious belief is imagination and fantasy — like a childhood fairy tale — in contrast to the “scientific” view that they espouse.

I didn't bother to read any further.

A man with his qualifications ought to know what the word "secular" means, and that most of the people in favour of church and state remaining separate are in fact religious not atheist.

So either he is woefully ignorant, or a liar.

UpSheRises
by Platinum Member on May. 12, 2014 at 7:31 PM
8 moms liked this
Just because you use big words doesnt mean you're communicating any other than blah blah blah blah.
snookyfritz
by Platinum Member on May. 12, 2014 at 7:36 PM
1 mom liked this
Explaining it to a person who lacks faith is kind of pointless, don't you think?

Quoting LucyMom08: What exactly are "obvious manifestations of the divine" that many of us seem to be missing?
KaleaLani
by Bronze Member on May. 12, 2014 at 7:41 PM
4 moms liked this
So many things wrong with this... It was very difficult to read all the way through with all the eye rolling.

romalove
by Roma on May. 12, 2014 at 7:46 PM
14 moms liked this
How is the evidence of modelling shown for global warming "blind faith"? Or the mountains if evidence for evolution? Not to mention the writer doesn't know the difference between a theory and a scientific theory.

What a silly article.
12hellokitty
by Platinum Member on May. 12, 2014 at 7:46 PM
2 moms liked this


Quoting jllcali: That guy sounds crabby. He spent the whole piece trash talking. He is obviously writing from inside a bubble. He doesn't seem to realize that a bubble also distorts the view.
  • Dr. Stephen M. Krason

    Chair of the Department of Humanities and Catholic Social Thought and Political Science

    Professor of Political Science and Legal Studies

    Egan Hall G 10-B • 284-5377
    skrason@franciscan.edu
    Download Full CV

    Visit Dr. Krason's blog

     

    Brief Bio

    Dr. Stephen M. Krason, Professor and Director of the Political Science Program, earned his J.D. and political science M.A. and Ph.D. at the State University of New York at Buffalo. He also holds an M.A. in theology-religious education from Gannon University. He teaches in both the University’s Political Science and Legal Studies Programs. In 1997, he was the recipient of the University’s “Campus Leadership and Teaching Award.” He joined the Franciscan University faculty in 1986, after serving for three years as Eastern Director of the Intercollegiate Studies Institute. 

    He is admitted to the bars of Massachusetts, Nebraska, the District of Columbia, and certain federal courts including the U.S. Supreme Court. He was co-founder (in 1992) of the Society of Catholic Social Scientists and since that time has served as its President and Chairman of the Board of Directors. As President, he also serves as Publisher of its scholarly journal The Catholic Social Science Review. He also serves as Director of the Society’s online/tutorial M.Th. program in Catholic Social Thought. 

    He has authored Abortion: Politics, Morality, and the ConstitutionLiberalism, Conservatism, and CatholicismPreserving a Good Political Order and a Democratic Republic; and The Public Order and the Sacred Order (whose revised edition Library Journal in 2009 called “an important contribution to Catholic social thought”), and edited or co-edited Parental Rights: The Contemporary Assault on Traditional LibertiesThe Recovery of American EducationCatholic Makers of AmericaWe Hold These Truths and MoreDefending the Family: A Sourcebook; and the two-volumeEncyclopedia of Catholic Social Thought, Social Science, and Social Policy. He also authored a short monograph entitled The International Pro-Abortion Rights Litigation Strategy: An Anti-Democratic Secret Plan to Force Legalized Abortion on the World’s Governments, as part of the Catholic Family and Human Rights Institute’s “White Paper Series.” His latest book, The Transformation of the American Democratic Republic, is due to be published in the summer of 2012. 

    He also has authored numerous articles, book chapters, and book reviews in such journals and publications asThe Catholic Social Science ReviewThe Social Justice ReviewThe Journal of Catholic Legal Studies,Interpretation: A Journal of Political PhilosophyEthics and MedicsThe Review of MetaphysicsCatalystThe Wanderer, and The Washington Times. He is also a contributor to both American Conservatism: An Encyclopedia and the online version of The New Catholic Encyclopedia (2nd edn.) He also writes a monthly online column entitled “Neither Left nor Right but Catholic,” which comments on current public questions in light of Catholic social teaching. 

    He has been listed in Who’s Who in the Midwest. For several years, he was a consultant to the Pope John XXIII Medical-Moral Research and Education Center (now the National Catholic Bioethics Center), and has served as Coordinator of the University’s Human Life Studies Academic Minor Program. He helped draw up both the University’s Human Life Studies and the Humanities and Catholic Culture Programs. 

    He is on the Board of Directors of Parentalrights.org and the International Solidarity and Human Rights Institute. He also serves on the Boards of Advisors of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights and of the Catholic Education Resource Center. He has also served on the Board of Directors of the Fellowship of Catholic Scholars. He has drafted or co-drafted and served as counsel-of-record for amicus curiae briefs in Troxel v. Granville and Camreta v. Greene/Alford v. Greene, major parental rights cases before the U.S. Supreme Court. 

    He has also spoken at continuing legal education programs for lawyers. He has received research grants from Franciscan University, the Earhart Foundation, the Wilbur Foundation, and the Russell Kirk Center for Cultural Renewal/Educational Reviewer. During the 2008-09 academic year, he was a visiting fellow at the Witherspoon Institute in Princeton, New Jersey. 

    He teaches courses in a number of fields in political science: American politics and government, political philosophy, American constitutional law, and international politics. He also teaches jurisprudence in the legal studies area. He has written and published in many subject areas including: abortion and human life issues, Catholic social teaching, the principles of the American Founding and American political thought, American constitutional law, education, false child abuse allegations, free speech and censorship, liberalism and conservatism, church-state questions, international politics, and American Catholic political history.Choosing the Right College, the Intercollegiate Studies Institute’s noted college guide, referred to Dr. Krason as being “renowned as a conservative scholar of the U.S. founding and the Constitution.” Dr. Krason is also a member of the James Madison Society, a group of distinguished scholars affiliated with the James Madison Program in American Ideals and Institutions at Princeton University.




    Your right his long list of studies and accomplishments is missing blogging at Alternet or the Rawstory,so obviously  he is living in a bubble....  



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