Rorate Caeli

The Rational Religion Update


  1. Quod erat demonstrandum!

  2. Let's keep this in perspective, Of course, this cannot compare with the recent destruction of Lebanon by Israel. How many churches were destroyed there? Certainly the destruction included Catholics and other Christians as we know from their complaints against the Israeli government.

  3. Israel's attack on Hezbollah in Lebanon was not a deliberate attack on Christians, so there is no comparison between Muslims destroyed churches and martyring nuns and Jews using indiscriminate force in retaliation against Muslim attacks on them. I'm afraid your words don't offer us any perspective at all, but only change the subject from Muslim misbehavior to Jewish misbehavior. What have the Jews got to do with Muslim violence caused by media misreporting of the Pope's Regensburg lecture?

  4. I doubt if a week goes by in each year without some act of muslim violence against Christian property or Christians themselves in one or other part of the world. I keep this situation closely monitored through several agencies. In some cases there are severe impediments to acts of communal Christian worship which may lead to physical repression.

    The west is noted for its overwhelming silence on these issues. When someone does draw allusion to it there follows summary international condemnation by followers of the creed and a deafening chorus of empathy from western liberals. The media plays its customary role of distortion-amplifier.

  5. The text of the Pope's Regensburg lecture is now available at the Vatican website with footnotes. Regarding the controversy over his quoting Emperor Manuel II, the relevant footnotes are these:

    Without descending to details, such as the difference in treatment accorded to those who have the "Book" and the "infidels", he addresses his interlocutor with a startling brusqueness, a brusqueness that we find unacceptable, on the central question about the relationship between religion and violence in general, saying: "Show me just what Mohammed brought that was new, and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached.”[3]

    [3]Controversy VII, 2 c: Khoury, pp. 142-143; Förstel, vol. I, VII. Dialog 1.5, pp. 240-241. In the Muslim world, this quotation has unfortunately been taken as an expression of my personal position, thus arousing understandable indignation. I hope that the reader of my text can see immediately that this sentence does not express my personal view of the Qur’an, for which I have the respect due to the holy book of a great religion. In quoting the text of the Emperor Manuel II, I intended solely to draw out the essential relationship between faith and reason. On this point I am in agreement with Manuel II, but without endorsing his polemic.

    The decisive statement in this argument against violent conversion is this: not to act in accordance with reason is contrary to God's nature.[5]

    [5] It was purely for the sake of this statement that I quoted the dialogue between Manuel and his Persian interlocutor. In this statement the theme of my subsequent reflections emerges.


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