lunes, septiembre 25, 2006

¿Socrates o Mahoma?

Lee Harris entrega este ensayo en la edición del 2 de octubre de 2006 de The Weekly Standard. Es un análisis excepcionalmente completo sobre la civilización occidental y su estado de, como lo llamaría Ortega y Gasset, "señorito satisfecho", es decir, no reconocer que lo que tomamos como dado, como el ambiente de libertades individuales de que gozamos, el libre debate racional que nos ha conducido a tantos logros, sólo es posible gracias a que nuestra civilización ha sido construida sobre una ideología subyacente que nos dice que cada persona humana tiene derecho a su vida, y libre arbitrio para elegir entre el Bien y el Mal, y que hay una diferencia moral entre el Bien y el Mal. El autor hila su ensayo alrededor del discurso del Papa Benedicto XVI en que citó al emperador bizantino Manuel II Paleólogo.

Algunos extractos:

"Modern reason argues that questions of ethics, of religion, and of God are outside its compass. Because there is no scientific method by which such questions can be answered, modern reason cannot concern itself with them, nor should it try to. From the point of view of modern reason, all religious faiths are equally irrational, all systems of ethics equally unverifiable, all concepts of God equally beyond rational criticism. But if this is the case, then what can modern reason say when it is confronted by a God who commands that his followers should use violence and even the threat of death in order to convert unbelievers?

If modern reason cannot concern itself with the question of God, then it cannot argue that a God who commands jihad is better or worse than a God who commands us not to use violence to impose our religious views on others. To the modern atheist, both Gods are equally figments of the imagination, in which case it would be ludicrous to discuss their relative merits. The proponent of modern reason, therefore, could not possibly think of participating in a dialogue on whether Christianity or Islam is the more reasonable religion, since, for him, the very notion of a "reasonable religion" is a contradiction in terms."

y esto

"Modern science cannot tell us that the emperor is right in his controversy with the learned Persian over what is or is not contrary to God's nature. Modern reason proclaims such questions unanswerable by science--and it is right to do so. But can modern reason hope to survive as reason at all if it insists on reducing the domain of reasonable inquiry to the sphere of scientific inquiry? If modern reason cannot take the side of the emperor in this debate, if it cannot see that his religion is more reasonable than the religion of those who preach and practice jihad, if it cannot condemn as unreasonable a religion that forces atheists and unbelievers to make a choice between their intellectual integrity and death, then modern reason may be modern, but it has ceased to be reason."

y esto

"Modern reason says that all ethical choices are subjective and beyond the scope of reason. But if this is so, then a man who wishes to live in a community made up of reasonable men is simply making a personal subjective choice--a choice that is no more reasonable than the choice of the man who wishes to live in a community governed by brute force. But if the reasonable man is reasonable, he must recognize that modern reason itself can only survive in a community made up of other reasonable men. Since to be a reasonable man entails wishing to live in a community made up of other reasonable men, then the reasonable man cannot afford to allow the choice between reason and violence to be left up to mere personal taste or intellectual caprice. To do so would be a betrayal of reason."


He ordenado el libro Civilization and Its Enemies en Amazon, del mismo autor, luego de leer este ensayo.

1 Comments:

At 16:05, Blogger Francisco J. Ibero said...

El ensayo es excelente.He leído algunos de él y todos están muy bien argumentados.Por cierto,tiene varios puntos comunes con el artículo de Esparza que reproduzco en mi blog.

 

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