Thursday, December 06, 2007

Transubstantiation and Human Gods

Mitt Romney will address his religious beliefs in a speech to be given this morning. I doubt he will talk about gods on other planets and humans becoming gods. When religious folk start talking about the nitty-gritty of their religious beliefs, the discussion can become problematic. For instance, it is my understanding that you cannot claim to be a Catholic without believing in transubstantiation. That can be a problem for some.

At the risk of the penalty of anathema, examine the belief of transubtantiation, "is the change of the substance of bread and wine into the Body and Blood of Christ occurring in the Eucharist according to the teaching of some Christian Churches".
Jesus therefore said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves. "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. "For My flesh is true food, and My blood is true drink. "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. (John 6:53-56)
You can go to the Catholic encyclopedia at New Advent for an extensive defense of the belief the "revealed fact" of transubstantiation.

Here are the contradictions discussed in section V:
(a) the continued existence of the Eucharistic Species, or the outward appearances of bread and wine, without their natural underlying subject (accidentia sine subjecto);

(b) the spatially uncircumscribed, spiritual mode of existence of Christ's Eucharistic Body (existentia corporis ad modum spiritus);

(c) the simultaneous existence of Christ in heaven and in many places on earth (multilocatio).
See, it all has to do with what the meaning of "substance" is....You can find a much simpler discussion concerning transubstantiation here, in an article called "Transubstantiation and Reason".

You can also find many fruitless religious arguments against transubstantiation.

But is the belief in transubstantiation really any different from the belief that god was once a man on another planet who became a god? My question can people so easily believe these religious concepts as facts....and not just facts based on faith but actual facts based on reason (without evidence of course). Yet these same people have problems with the "theory" of evolution which is based on reams of actual evidence and not just philosophical arguments.

In any case, good luck today Mitt. You're going to need it.

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