in comment, Father Luke's, 'The rise of the individual - the fall of the community'

Father Luke Fong:

The rise of the individual - the fall of the community, a thought-provoking article.

French philosopher Rene Descartes who lived in the early 17th century is hailed as the “Father of modern philosophy”. The ‘individualistic’ revolution is generally attributed to his thought of ‘cogito ergo sum’ or ‘I think therefore I am’. It made the world sit up and believe, erroneously, of course, that the “I” is what everything should revolve around....

Maybe then, we can hear ourselves say: “Even though I may not be getting anything from Mass, even though the hymns aren’t lively, even though I may view some of the Church laws as archaic and infringing on my individual freedom, I still go to Mass, still sing hymns, and still abide by Church laws. Because it’s really not about me.”

Anon:
what a timely reminder on this article. There's no such thing as "pick and choose" or either You are a catholic or not. period.

As a catholic.. we must accept the the teachings of the church of the magisterium "wholesale" and not at yr whims and fancies..

ed:
Hi Anon,

If we take the church at its word, then wouldn't some of the evils perpetrated by the church in the past continue ad infinitum? I know that the church isn't a democracy, and shouldn't be one as that only serves to tether the church to the whims and fancies of the populace whom are themselves subject to socialisation within the socio-economic system. Given the above 2 points, there is quite a problem here isn't it.

Hi Father Luke,

With regards to Descartes, if i'm not mistaken, the only thing he realised that he could be certain of was not the 'I' but his ability to 'doubt'. This, in part, founded the basis for the scientific method which attempted to discern the means by which we could 'doubt' correctly. I do stand by the scientific method without question though, as i'm aware that the only thing we can be certain of is the certainty of the fallibility of humanity.

With regards to 'the rise of the individual' and 'the fall of the community'. I am, on persuasion by reason, a Socialist - no, i am not an atheist...that's an illogical concept - and believe in the value of the community that abides by the 13th Commandment of the Christ. However, without the rise of the individual, would not the individual be subject to the dictates of the elite within a community? I suppose it is not the 'rise of the individual' that is the problem, but the 'rise of the individual' within particular socio-economic conditions, such as those which hold the class-system as sacrosanct, that compromises the community.

If we were to all live within a community where we hold true and fast the 13th Commandment of Christ, and bring about the institutions that do not put obstacles in the way of its practice, then the rise of the individual would further elevate the community would it not?

I am, officially, a Catholic by the way (parish, Risen Christ, where i was an alter boy between 1978-81 before i was sacked for bringing potato chips to a retreat amongst a couple of other ridiculous reasons). But have ceased to attend mass since 1999 as i find the church in singapore to be more of an opiate than a solution - unlike the Church in the UK where the priest proffers perspectives on how we can live good Christian lives in consideration of the socio-economic system and whilst acknowledging the evils of the capitalist system. It was quite the eye-opener for myself. This particular priest reminded me of a Father Adrian Anthony back in the 80s whose sermons drew thousands on the first sunday of the month. Gone are those days with the emergence of singapore as a Confucian state.

Thank you for the above perspective, it is an issue that i've been concerned about for the last couple of decades, and in essence, I do agree with your perspective. Keep them coming.


a2ed

10 comments:

  1. Very good perspective Ed ! Sadly the church here has become confucianist in nature. Who takes the blame, the church or the state, or even both ?

    Birdseyeview

    ReplyDelete
  2. .
    That's been the problem with the church for quite some time.

    Whether the pope was crowning the 'Holy Roman Emperor' - who was generally neither 'holy' nor 'roman'; complementing the overarching patriarchal system; or condemning 'terrorism' whilst largely remaining silent as America went around killing hundreds of thousands via various means (i.e. u.s. sponsored embargo on Iraq for 10 years before 11/9 led to half a million child deaths); or keeping silent in the face of the hundreds of millions of deaths caused by capitalism globally; they generally tend to serve as an opiate within these system.

    In a sense, the nationalisation of the church in England that saw their Queen becoming its head has taken place throughout the world with most churches taking their cue from the socio-cultural and economic status quo of the country, even if they are supposed to answer to some western pope.

    Frankly, given this situation I excommunicated the pope and the church some time back and now seek the Christ elsewhere, along with embracing the perspectives of other faiths.
    .

    ReplyDelete
  3. Don't lose faith, as Christ is still alive and watching. Believe!
    Your faith is not to be based on what other Christians do and your bad encounters with them, but as in your personal individual self. In your Faith, Understanding and Experience with The Lovely and Kind Jesus Christ that matters.
    One can never feel lonely with Christ.
    birdyview

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  4. REMEMBER IT'S YOUR PERSONAL RELATIONSHIP WITH CHRIST THAT MATTERS AND NOT OTHER CHRISTIANS' NEGATIVE BEHAVIOUR AND RELATIONSHIP WITH CHRIST, THAT'S GOING TO INFLUENCE YOUR TRUST AND FAITH IN CHRIST AND THE TEMPLE OF GOD.
    OPIATES ARE FOR DRUG ADDICTS, WHEREAS CHRISTIANS' UNQUESTINABLE DEPENDANCE ON CHRIST HAS SHOWN RESULTS FOR NUMEROUS FOLLOWERS AND HAVE INCREASED THEIR FAITH IN ABUNDANCE.
    "I am the vine and you are the branches. Whoever remains in me, and I in him, will bear much fruit, for you can do nothing without me.
    ALWAYS THANK THE GOOD LORD, FOR ALL THE WONDERFUL THINGS HE HAS PROVIDED YOU AND YOUR LOVED ONES WITH.EVEN WITH MY IMPERFECTIONS.
    birdyview

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  5. Both recent comments are appreciated, but irrelevant given my statements.

    "Frankly, given this situation I excommunicated the pope and the church some time back and now seek the Christ elsewhere, along with embracing the perspectives of other faiths."

    The church serves as an opiate under these socio-economic conditions, not Christ. 'Dependence on Christ' isn't enough, He's not going to come here and wash your ass, but he has given you enough brains to do that for yourself. We have to do likewise in all arenas. Without the application of the perspectives of various religions in the larger arena of life, religion becomes irrelevant, and thus, an opiate.

    Finally, 'control' or 'command' '+' will enable the reader to enlarge the text, so there's no need for entire statements to be made with upper-case letters. When we use it for a word here or a word there, it may be for emphasis, but for whole statements, that is simply shouting.

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  6. You simply dont't seem to have an understanding of spiritual existance, as you are too engrossed with the material world and fame.
    At least having an understanding of both in simplicity, would make you a great mind!
    birdyview

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  7. Humilty matters most in understanding the spiritual world. Understand that rule first. Thence shall all follow!
    birdyview

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  8. I suppose you didn't understand anything that's been said here or on this site for you to make such a statement. What's your evidence for ..

    "You simply dont't seem to have an understanding of spiritual existance, as you are too engrossed with the material world and fame."

    I'm into neither, or else I would simply focus on that which gains the most 'hits' and pick professions with high returns.

    No more bible-bashing. If you're into blind faith in the pronouncement of man (not referring to Jesus), than so be it. I believe in an open-eyed faith and am not swayed by those who use quotes from the bible as argument. That is fanaticism. All comments calling for me to 'praise the lord' and use 'hallelujjahs' as periods will be deleted. Keep your soapbox proselytisation and illogical argument-via-bible quote for your own site.

    ReplyDelete
  9. SAD LOSER!
    birdyview

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  10. I don't think the Christ would approve of such a reaction;)

    ReplyDelete

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