The Cardinal & the Chemist by Joseph Kroger

The Cardinal & the Chemist

Personal Catholicism: The Theological Epistemologies of John Henry Newman and Michael Polanyi
by Martin X. Moleski, S.J.
Washington, D.C.: The Catholic University of America Press, 2000
(222 pages; $54.95, cloth)

reviewed by Joseph Kroger

Part of the cultural legacy of the scientific age in which we live is the widespread assumption that doubt, uncertainty, and tentativeness are cognitive ideals, whereas belief, certainty, and commitment are to be looked upon with suspicion. Since knowledge is commonly thought to be limited to what can be clearly specified and objectively demonstrated, it is considered intellectually irresponsible to hold any belief or give assent to any truth without being able to provide clear and explicit grounds for doing so. Such is the morality of knowledge in a world governed by the ideals of critical reason.

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