Tuesday, May 09, 2006

The Church speaks out. In Australia

Cardinal George Pell has written a thoughtful piece on the confrontation between immigrant Islam and secular Australia. He enumerates the usual problematic nature of Islam, its offensive, universalist notions, its connection between violence and spirituality, its emphasis on procreation and its ability to sustain high birth rates in connection to the low Western birth rates. A most salient paragraph in my opinion is:

"These two examples show that there is a whole range of factors, some of them susceptible to influence or a change in direction, affecting the prospects for a successful Islamic engagement with democracy. Peace with respect for human rights are the most desirable end point, but the development of democracy will not necessarily achieve this or sustain it. This is an important question for the West as well as for the Muslim world. Adherence to what George Weigel has called “a thin, indeed anorexic, idea of procedural democracy”[21] can be fatal here. It is not enough to assume that giving people the vote will automatically favour moderation, in the short term at least[22]. Moderation and democracy have been regular partners in Western history, but have not entered permanent and exclusive matrimony and there is little reason for this to be better in the Muslim world, as the election results in Iran last June and the elections in Palestine in January reminded us."

"Belief in a thin, [...] procedural democracy". The idea that society, organised human life can be reduced to a simple procedure, a ritual, is one of the biggest threats of the West to itself.

There were the usual nauseating cries from the Left demanding that the Cardinal be punished for speaking out, because naturally the Left knows better and everybody disagreeing with them is an idiot who has to be silenced.

Such a nice thing that Truth has been contracted out to the Left. Saves everyone a lot of thinking for themselves.

4 comments:

Pim's Ghost said...

Finally, more shifts to correct the horrors of late. I like the reference to George Weigel, he wrote the introduction to the book I'm now reading, Without Roots, which is a correspondence between Pope Benedict XVI (before the Papacy as Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger) and Italian philosopher Marcello Pera. The book is brilliant, and its focus on Europe particularly important, especially when remarked on by such modern giants in terms of philosophers responding to both the schools of relativism and deconstructionism. It's refreshing to see two philosophers worth their mettle deconstructing the deconstructionists and their nonsense.

Esther said...

"..a thin, indeed anorexic, idea of procedural democracy”[21] can be fatal here. It is not enough to assume that giving people the vote will automatically favour moderation

Democracy is not only the right to vote. Democracy is protecting human rights - freedom and property for instance. There are many countries who give their citizens the right to vote (Iran, Egypt) but that does not make them truly democracies, just countries who give their citizens the right to vote.

There is no reason that giving people the right to vote will automatically engender moderation and support for human rights.

Snouck said...

Pim's Ghost:
especially when remarked on by such modern giants in terms of philosophers responding to both the schools of relativism and deconstructionism. It's refreshing to see two philosophers worth their mettle deconstructing the deconstructionists and their nonsense.

Snouck:
Relativism only relativises what relativists WANT to relativise. Do not try to attack THEIR dogma's though. E.g. attacking "racism" is verboten. Smth similar goes on with deconstructionism. Meaning does not exist apart when the deconstructionists WANT it to exist. It is a ideology of the will.

The will of the well-connected and those running Western universities.

Pim's Ghost said...

Yes, and I suppose that the irony is lost on the fools entirely that they claim nothing to me "truth" or "fact" unless they can maneuver it into such a manner themselves.

"Ideology of the will". Absolutely. Survival by the will, absolutely necessary. But you know my angle.