Sunday, March 4, 2018

Neomodernist Heresy Redux: The "New Paradigm"

The New Paradigm Folks

The facade in neomodernism, the latest emergence of which is the "New Paradigm," is evident in three areas, the first of which is its argument that because the dogmas of the Church do not possess indisputable knowledge of the supernatural, they are relative to how they impact one’s imagination, and may be believed or disbelieved accordingly. Theologians (such as the New Paradigmists) susceptible to this argument believe dogma to be changeable over time (as opposed to development of doctrine), and that dogma may be disregarded when no longer fruitful for the individual, or reinterpreted to better meet with individual experience. This is a blatant misunderstanding of development of doctrine, and is most famously demonstrated in the dissent of many American theologians to Humanae Vitae so soon after its promulgation. 
Neomodernists do not think real objective knowledge of God possible, despite arguments from reason, fulfilled prophecies and documented miracles. For them knowledge of God comes only from subjective religious experience, “from the heart.” The fruits of such religious experience are binding only on the one undergoing the experience.  Neomodernists refer to this as “on-going revelation,” and its theological interpretation as “process theology.” Neomodernism’s subjectivism has also given rise to a confused notion of the Catholic teaching on divine immanence, which is that we are in God (He made us, gives us grace) and God in us (sanctifying grace in our souls). Modernists prior to Vatican I, influenced by Spinoza, thought that human beings were emanations from the divine, which leaned toward the pantheistic cosmology of the eastern religions, where God is identical with the world or a part of it. The Church has always taught the transcendence of God, even when God lives in us. Since for the neomodernist all revelation comes from subjective personal experience, it is only fitting that the “people of God” be the final authors of what should be believed and done. This means that they favor reforming the Church along the lines of a modern, popular democracy.  Read more here.