Rod Dreher

Andrew Brown on the problem with “natural theology”:

But neither is it satisfactory for Christianity to retreat entirely from the world of facts about the world and to suppose that God is merely a matter of opinion, not of truth. This is roughly – very roughly – the Steven Jay Gould position, of Non-overlapping Magisteria. It doesn’t work because human beings understand the world through significant stories, and we can’t consistently and without great effort separate facts from values into discrete boxes. There’s no reason to suppose that any evolved creature should be able to. It is only values which decide which facts exist to us.

[Emphasis mine — RD]
Stanley Fish, from the Templeton reason and morality symposium:

This does not mean, [Thomas] Kuhn hastens to say, “that there are no good reasons,” only that the reasons will be good only for those who already “honor” them, those who work inside the paradigm that marks them as relevant and even obvious. It follows that someone who remains on the outside cannot be convinced by inside reasons. Conviction, however, is assured once the former outsider becomes an insider and the reasons become his and are, in his eyes, good.
How does this happen? Not by recourse to a universal epistemological/moral logic (there isn’t any) or by recourse to force (that’s not the way minds change). Kuhn’s (necessarily) weak answer is that it happens through a “conversion experience” that might be “likened to a gestalt switch.”
Conversion is, of course, a theological term, denoting the sudden, unprepared-for movement from one set of beliefs to another, a movement that brings along with it new imperatives, purposes, canons of evidence, and reasons for taking this action rather than that.
It is often said that religious reasons are defective because they refuse judgment by norms that are not nominated by, and already included in, the faith. But the same is true, if Kuhn is right, of all reasons–political, scientific, medical, educational, etc. They are good reasons, reasons for right or moral action, only within the faith that gives them life and to which they return a continual homage.

Anthony Storm, on Kierkegaard:

Kierkegaard agreed with the theology of Anselm (1033-1109) who said Credo ut intelligam, “I believe so that I might understand”. If one encounters a body of water, for example, one can examine the water first, and subject it to the scrutiny of science, or one can go down into the water and swim. Though the scientific method is essential in examining the artifacts of this world, the supernatural cannot be approached except by faith.

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