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 Newman's «Grammar of Assent» and Modernism 
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New post Newman's «Grammar of Assent» and Modernism
A Jesuit who told me about Newman's Grammar of Assent. He said it and Newman's Development of Christian Doctrine are very useful for understanding our "present situation." Since Newman certainly was an "Invisible [Vatican II] Council Father," the Jesuit is right.

Larson's "Does God Love Us: An Examination of the Epistemology of John Henry Newman" and Sartino's "Another Look at John Henry Cardinal Newman" are very valuable, especially the section in the latter on The Grammar of Assent. These two articles make it clear than Newman's thought was the progenitor of Modernism's schizophrenia regarding faith and reason. In fact, Modernists Loisy and Tyrrell considered themselves “devout follower[s ] of Newman.”

"Real assent" with the "illative sense" versus "notional assent"—the former being more real and the latter including dogma—is a false dichotomy. Larson very convincingly shows that this false dichotomy is the origin of Modernism's depreciation of dogma as lacking a vitality which each individual believer should supplement with his own personal faith experiences. This is uncannily reminiscent of Pascendi's description of the Modernists' "vital immanence."

Read at least pages 12-25 of "Another Look at Newman" pertaining to Newman's Grammar of Assent. "Another Look at Newman" shows how Grammar of Assent espouses nominalist (things are whatever we name them and nothing in themselves; interestingly, Occam founded nominalism because he was anti-papist, just like Newman was in his disparagement of the dogma of papal infallibility), empiricist (i.e., a faithful follower of Bacon), idealist (in that we don't know beings; we only know our ideas of them), skeptic (this follows from all of the above; cf. Gram. Assent x. §2. 410-11: "I am suspicious then of scientific demonstrations in a question of concrete fact…"), and Protestant (Gram. Assent x. §1. 384-85: "in religious inquiry each of us can only speak for himself") views.

Also, Newman thinks dogmas are merely human creations, "notions." This is flatly against Lamentabili Sane's condemned proposition #22:
Quote:
22. The dogmas the Church holds out as revealed are not truths which have fallen from heaven. They are an interpretation of religious facts which the human mind has acquired by laborious effort.


Another interesting tidbit about Newman is his reaction to Æterni Patris:
Quote:
months after the promulgation of <Aeterni Patris> he [Newman] asked Fr. Robert Whitty, a Jesuit in Rome and most sympathetic to him, as to what the whole encyclical was about. Fr. Whitty wrote back that the Encyclical came because "the Pope [Leo XIII] having himself been brought up in the Society's teaching—knowing that some of our Professors in Italy and France were leaving St. Thomas in certain points of <Philosophy>, and feeling that these were important points against the errors of the day—had expressed a wish that our teaching should return to the old lines."


Newman's false epistemology, certainly related for his lack proper training in St. Thomas's doctrine*, directly relates to his negative views of the dogma of papal infallibility; cf. "Newman and the Pope."

*(He never cites St. Thomas once in any of his works.)

Also, here're some interesting resources that show Newman's works are not Modernist:
Modernism Essay by Bishop O'Dwyer (1908)
Letter from Pope Pius X to Bishop O'Dwyer
approving his essay (1908)

If you can read Spanish, this is a good description of Newman's epistemology from a Gregorian University thesis.

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«The Essence & Topicality of Thomism»: http://ar.gy/5AaP
by Fr. Réginald Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P.
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Modernism: modernism. us.to
blog: sententiaedeo.blogspot. com
Aristotelian Thomism: scholastic. us.to


Last edited by Alan Aversa on Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:18 pm, edited 3 times in total.

Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:06 am
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New post Re: Card. Newman's "Grammar of Assent" Modernism's Progenito
Alan Aversa wrote:
Quote:
Rome's attitude to him can be explained by the gratitude it felt for his stupendous work in converting so many Englishmen. He truly broke the unwatered soil of England with his Tracts and his own example. For this he was celebrated by Catholics in England also, of course, so that Rome did not think it prudent to censure him. Pius IX said of his Letter to the Duke of Norfolk that it contained censurable propositions but he did not wish it to be censured, and he suggested that this be repeated to Newman privately. That sums up the situation. Newman couldn't be used in any position of leadership in the Church, but he also was not to be criticised publicly. He was created cardinal when he was too old to act as one, as a mark of respect and gratitude.
So Rome wanted error to spread in order to get converts‽


I don't think that is a fair assessment: I hardly think that the many Englishmen who converted to Catholicism due to Newman's Tracts would have been able to take the time to thoroughly examine his theology, and none of them could have possibly been competent to do so.

Although I see your point (I think), I don't agree with it.

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Kenneth G. Gordon


Sat Mar 10, 2012 8:22 am
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Location: Tucson, Arizona
New post Re: Card. Newman's "Grammar of Assent" Modernism's Progenito
Ken Gordon wrote:
I don't think that is a fair assessment: I hardly think that the many Englishmen who converted to Catholicism due to Newman's Tracts would have been able to take the time to thoroughly examine his theology, and none of them could have possibly been competent to do so.

Although I see your point (I think), I don't agree with it.
So, it's more like Rome didn't allow the full truth to propagate in order to obtain English converts? Thanks

_________________
«The Essence & Topicality of Thomism»: http://ar.gy/5AaP
by Fr. Réginald Garrigou-Lagrange, O.P.
e-Book: bit.ly/1iDkMAw

Modernism: modernism. us.to
blog: sententiaedeo.blogspot. com
Aristotelian Thomism: scholastic. us.to


Mon Mar 12, 2012 7:10 pm
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Joined: Tue Sep 20, 2011 12:31 am
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Location: Moscow, Idaho, U.S.A.
New post Re: Card. Newman's "Grammar of Assent" Modernism's Progenito
Alan Aversa wrote:
Ken Gordon wrote:
I don't think that is a fair assessment: I hardly think that the many Englishmen who converted to Catholicism due to Newman's Tracts would have been able to take the time to thoroughly examine his theology, and none of them could have possibly been competent to do so.

Although I see your point (I think), I don't agree with it.
So, it's more like Rome didn't allow the full truth to propagate in order to obtain English converts? Thanks


Unfair.

Although I have believed firmly that "Rome" has very often worried much too much about causing "scandal", nonetheless, if one attempts to take into consideration ALL of the factors involved, and if one realizes that none of us are really party to even a fraction of those factors, to judge as you, apparently, have is unfair.

I think it is called "rash judgement", and if that is what it is in your case, then it is a sin. But only you and God can decide that...

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Kenneth G. Gordon


Mon Mar 12, 2012 8:07 pm
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