Individualism and Infallibility

In my previous entry, I discussed the tendency of modern Catholics to adopt Protestant attitudes toward theology and proclaim the autonomy of the individual in determining religious truth. During my deconversion, however, I realized that even the most conservative Catholic must also necessarily implicitly hold this position because of the inescapable fact that it's always an individual who chooses to follow a religion and thus always an individual who act as the final authority. Catholics attempt to avoid this issue by claiming to recognize an infallible pope as the final authority, but the individual still must be the ultimate arbiter between who is fallible and who is infallible! All Catholic dogma does is reduce the number of personal judgments to one, but this judgment still must be made by each fallible person. It would be circular and thus invalid to argue that the pope is infallible because he claims to be, so in the end, each Catholic really only says, “I think the pope cannot possibly be wrong.” So much for building the church upon a rock.


No comments: