Saturday, June 23, 2007

Theology, Liturgy, Human Relations- All in a day's learning

Hello from the campus of St. Mary's University in lovely, and I mean that most sincerely, Winona, Minnesota. While I knew before arriving that these two weeks would be intensive, I had no idea just how intensive. This is literally the only time I have had to sit down and type a quick post. Three topics above are what I do day and night here. Three hours of Theology, three hours of liturgical theology, and two hours of human relations.

Anyway, I'll give a glimpse of my internal workings, this will do nothing but further reveal the abstract nature of my thinking. Nonetheless blogging, like preaching, grounds me and helps to make connections, especially given my conviction that theology is practical; the inherent relation between orthodoxy and orthopraxis. During my Foundations in Theology course, while discussing Christology and the Credo, I started to ponder what implications translating the Greek homoousios into the Latin consubstantial had for a subsequent metaphysics. This Western metaphysics of substance, with its roots in Aristotle was brought under intense philosophical and theological scrutiny in the last century, with the philosophers leading the way. I was especially thinking of Hiedegger's critique of what was lost in translation when Greek terms were translated into Latin. At its most basic, ousios means being, which is something different from substances. The Heidegger put the retrieval of the question of Being (Sein) at the center of his critique. Heidegger was formed in Husserl's phenomenological school, as was Edith Stein, as was Dietrich von Hildebrand, as was Max Scheler. It was Scheler who was a tremendous influence on Karol Wojtyla (a.k.a. John Paul II). Beyond that the logical positivists, who were heavily influenced by the dear Wittgenstein. How these philosophical critiques have been brought to theology by Schillebeeckx, Macquarrie, Rahner, Haight, etc. Now this isn't exactly what the lecture was on, but it is what the lecture made me think about. Anyway, back to the question at hand, I don't know, but I suspect the implications of the translation were huge. The implication was huge because a translation from Greek to Latin also requires transliteration. So, for what it is worth . . .

Beginning with this evening's Vigil Mass, it is the Solemnity of the St. John the Baptist.

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