What is the REAL relationship of faith and reason... are they still united, or has there been an annulment of their prior union?
Like so many "issues" in modern times, we are frequently presented with an "either/ or" choice, coaxing into thinking it must be only one OR the other. "Not only can faith and reason never be at odds with one another but they mutually support each other, for on the one hand right reason established the foundations of the faith and, illuminated by its light, develops the science of divine things; on the other hand, faith delivers reason from errors and protects it and furnishes it with knowledge of many kinds." (Dei Filius, Chapter 4, 10)
Not so, with faith and reason as we have been learning in life- they are meant to be celebrated together. We can only get so far with natural reason alone (preambula fidei), at which point we must be open (with good will) to the grace of God... that we may receive His gift of supernatural Faith and love. What does this look like in real life?
"Ask, and it will be given you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you." I've pondered this for decades, albeit superficially, and it was only today, when I read it as the Gospel in mass that several things popped out. First of all, did you notice the sequence of Ask, Seek and Knock? Whenever I try to memorize things, it's often with a mnemonic, taking the first letters of key points. In this case, "A, S, K"- Powerful message that is being shared with us in the Gospel, it all begins with ASKING, not the "experts" out there, but Him/ God!
In my holistic vision of true health, Body, Mind and Spirit are working together synergistically. I see ASKING as a function of the Mind... fitting beautifully with natural reason. We are naturally curious about life and our Creator, God, and can get to an intellectual understanding of Him with natural reason alone. But that can feel very shallow. It's like getting to the top of a mountain and looking out and saying, "is that all there is?"
I believe we innately desire to feel more... to connect with our Creator, and that requires a leap of faith- to SEEK His gift of supernatural faith. Without it (faith), we are essentially stranded... sitting on the mountaintop, alone with our intellectual knowledge, yet unable to enjoy the ecstasy of union with God. This is our desire for Spirit (breath/ fire of life) which is often lacking in our busy, distracted modern times. That leaves KNOCKING which I see as a physical/ Body activity, in which we take action upon receiving our gift of supernatural faith from God. With all three facets in balance and working together, we come to the fullness of truth about ourselves, as Pope John Paul II noted so eloquently in Fides et Ratio, 1998.
IF we don't have the two wings of Faith and Reason, moving in harmony with one another, not only will we be unable to "take off" properly, but if we miraculously did get airborn for awhile, we could come crashing to the ground if we ever chose to abandon one or the other. It is obvious that with Faith and Reason, it is "Both/ and" instead of either/or. God Blss us as we soar to great heights... healthy body, mind AND spirit!
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"Problems cannot be solved with the same mindset that created them" -Albert Einstein
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