R. J. Snell on the Triumph of Anglican Experience over Faith & Reason
By now the confused state of the Anglican Communion is rather obvious to anyone following our debates about homosexuality. Of course, Anglican confusion is hardly new, and we often joke among ourselves about our ability to muddle through, confident that our three-legged stool of Scripture, Tradition, and Reason will yet again hold up. But things seem different this time; the stool seems not broken so much as discarded and ignored, at least by some.
I’d suggest that a narrow focus on homosexuality is likely to miss the underlying cause of our confusion, something like watching your neighbors when they’re half-way through a spat, when things have turned really nasty, but in the furor forgetting that the argument started over something else now buried under passion. Sometimes women’s ordination is blamed for originating the mess, for as progressives ignored or interpreted away Paul on ordination, the grounds were set for ignoring or reinterpreting passages on homosexuality.
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R. J. Snell is currently a visiting lecturer at Princeton University, and he directs the Center on the University and Intellectual Life for the Witherspoon Institute. Prior to that appointment he was Professor of Philosophy at Eastern University and the Templeton Honors College. His most recent book is Acedia and Its Discontents: Metaphysical Boredom in an Empire of Desire (Angelico Press, 2015).
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