Catholic Audio Media Newsletter from St. Anthony Allston, MA
Catholic Audio Media Newsletter from St. Anthony Allston, MA
Sunday Homily: Bertrand Russell, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J. and the Holy Trinity

Sunday Homily: Bertrand Russell, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, S.J. and the Holy Trinity

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So we're going to come up with a couple of ideas, a couple of little things to put together here and what I'm going to do is I'm going to have a church over here, and this is a church. I'm going to build this big huge church and this is a church for anyone who has ever gone to church. Doesn't matter how many times maybe only once, but they've gone to church and doesn't matter what church could be. Saint, Anthony's maybe or it could be the Church of The Flat Tire doesn't matter as long as they've been to a church at least once this is where we're going to put them. I'm going to put all those people over there.

Now we going to build another church over here. And this is a church for people who have never walked into a church. They might have walked by one. They might have spent their whole life never ever walked into a church and we got have a church for them. So now this is the church and all these people come in, they're going to go into this church. So, we have a church where people who You've been to church at least once doesn't matter which one and we have a church for people over here who have never been to church, not even once.

Now we have a problem because the people who have never been to church ever are now in church, but the only reason why they're in church is because this is where they go, if they've never been to church. So now, what do we do with these people? Do we leave them here, or do we bring them over here to be with the people but then, what about this? And why are they the only reason why they're there was it never been to church? So how do we deal with that?

Bertrand Russell’s Paradox

Well, that's a probably very bad example of Bertrand Russell's Paradox, if you don't know anything about it, Bertrand Russell's Paradox, you know, I'm not a mathematician. So I learned this from Jeffrey Kaplan, online on YouTube.

Bertrand Russell's Paradox, is a thing called set theory and you have these different sets, But ultimately, to make a long story short, he comes up and discovers that paradox, when you can have a set that shouldn't be in another set but can be an another set. How do you solve this whole issue? He brought it to the inventor of the set theory whose name, I have forgotten [Georg Cantor] and told him. He wrote a letter to him actually about how he had discovered this. And it was so devastating to this, man. The man  actually went and had a nervous breakdown and had to be hospitalized as Jeffrey Kaplan explains.

How does Bertrand Russell solve this? Simple, these churches don't exist in the first place, therefore, we just let it go. So it's interesting that he did this, right? Because Bertrand Russell was an atheist. He was an intensely strong atheist lived mostly through the 20th century.

There was a famous video that used to be on YouTube but has been removed, but used to be on YouTube where Mike Wallace and asked him, if what happened in Nazi Germany was evil and he couldn't answer not that he couldn't answer the question, but he wouldn't, because he didn't have any concept of good and evil in his system. So, again, the way he solved, this Paradox by simple saying, well, in reality, these things don't exist. Therefore, we just dismiss them, but that wasn't good for other people. And they said, no, there's got to be some solution.

What Bertrand Russell, ultimately discovered is that limit to our ability to understand that, which is around us in that which we can conceive around us, which brings us to the purpose of today. Today we're celebrating the Most Holy Trinity. What is it that we believe that God is three persons in one God what else? That's about it, that's it, it's a community of three persons in one God, and that's what we believe. But it also leads us to understand that our reality is bigger than what, how we can perceive it.

It's one of the most important things we can understand. It's so powerful that our reality is bigger than we can understand it.

God Is Not Our Invisible Friend in the Sky

Now you'll eventually hear on TV one celebrity or another, who is an atheist says well I refuse believe in our invisible friend in the sky. Well, that's not what we believe in. We believe in God, who is immanent and Transcendent. He is bigger than all of the universe, because he's the creator of the universe. But he's also within all of us, and God is bigger than our ability to comprehend Him. We can be like Bertrand Bertrand Russell and say, well, I can’t understand that therefore, it doesn't exist or we can realize that. What is limited is not God, but us. One of my as I like to say, one of my favorite Heretics is Pierre. Teilhard de Chardin. What makes a heretic, heretic is a lot of what they say is true. But some of it is not. And so, there are a lot of people that didn't like some of his stuff, but other stuff, they said, “yeah, I know that's right, on the money.”

By the way, he's considered a heretic in two worlds, the theologians and the scientists because he was a paleontologist, but he was the first Catholic priest to embrace evolution. One of the things he thought of, which I think is excellent is what is called the Noosphere. The noosphere is how our understanding of everything around us grows, over the history of our race.

So if we're in the first century, and we're starting to understand what's going on. We're starting, to learn about this Trinity and learn about God, we're having that understanding and maybe, We can deal a little bit with the invisible friend in the sky, but we eventually realized that even that doesn't fit.

Now it's many years later in 1925, if we talked about some of the realities we know now people would say that stuff can't be possible but now not only as I said last week, do we know of black holes? We have pictures of them. We see a whole different understanding of reality than we would have in the first century and that whole understanding of reality also opens up more to a deeper understanding of who God is.

We haven't got to the point where we can fully understand three persons in one God, but we can realize that this God Is bigger than our ability to perceive. But now our ability to perceive is bigger than before. Therefore, we understand God in a whole different way than we would have even in the first century. And this is what we celebrate today God Is Bigger Than even that, which contains a black hole, but he is immanent and Transcendent. He is. This God of love, he is the source of all being and we are learning every day more and more. What we can about what God is but ultimately God is leading us to the fullness of what we are called to be.

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Catholic Audio Media Newsletter from St. Anthony Allston, MA
Catholic Audio Media Newsletter from St. Anthony Allston, MA
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