/* Am I A Pundit Now?: New Pope Denounces Relativism

Thursday, April 21, 2005

New Pope Denounces Relativism

The future Benedict XVI made a statement against relativism before the conclave:
We are moving toward a dictatorship of relativism that has at its highest goal one's own ego and one's own desires" - Pope Benedict XVI (then Cardinal Ratzinger)
Now wait just a minute there buster. Just because I cannot sift through the veracity of ALL the various religions and faiths out there does not necessarily mean that my highest goal is my own ego. Ratzinger also denounced relativism by stating it denies absolute truths. This is also erroneous - as a weak relativist I do not deny that there is an absolute truth. I believe there must be one, single Truth, that universally applies to all. What I do deny is that humans can figure out what that Truth is.
Relativism, which is letting oneself be tossed and swept along by every wind of teaching, looks like the only attitude acceptable by today's standards," Ratzinger said.
Wrong yet again. As a relativist, I am quite skeptical of all winds of teaching, as the Cardinal put it. Even skeptical of the catholic church, which I suspect was the Cardinal's real beef with me. I dislike being accused of being disingenuous by this man. Ratzinger was saying that I, as a relativist, am just looking for an excuse to be a libertine. That is not why I am a relativist. I am a relativist because I genuinely do not see which religion, faith or belief system is objectively true. The Pope is so blinded by the strength of his own faith in this matter - he does not understand how someone cannot believe as he does unless it is a way to avoid being blamed for moral wrongs. It is a silly argument. A relativist does not believe in moral wrongs - so why would I be trying to run from them or rationalize them? That would be like a catholic fearing the prohibitions in the Koran. They just don't apply. In case you are wondering what a 'weak' relativist is, I don't think it was a good thing for hindus to practice settee, the tradition of immolating widows upon their dead husbands funeral biers. This 'diversity' stuff only goes so far. Matthew Yglesias has not one, but two takes on this issue. I found the article on Ratzinger's denouncement via Jeff Jarvis. P.S. You know what, I think I do need to conclude by saying that I like the new Pope, and I think he is a good and worthy successor to JPII. I can't fault the man too much for being biased against non-believers.

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