May 2001By David Arias Jr.
The Selfhood of the Human Person. By John F. Crosby. The Catholic University of America Press. 313 pages. $19.95.
This is a serious philosophical work on the nature of the human self. Both in Church and in some areas of society one can hear statements about mans intrinsic human dignity and the uniqueness and inviolability of each individual person. But what is being said here philosophically? What is the foundation for mans intrinsic human dignity, his uniqueness, his inviolability? These questions and many others find their answers only after one has explored the fundamental nature of the human person. It is precisely this task that Crosby takes up in this significant work. While standing in the philosophia perennis of Plato, Aristotle, St. Augustine, St. Thomas, and others, Crosby examines such topics as the nature of mans subjectivity, transcendence, and finitude, as well as the way in which man is both similar to and different from his Eternal Exemplar.
The Savior of Science. By Fr. Stanley Jaki. Eerdmans. 255 pages. No price given..
Physicists and other empirical scientists need to reflect upon the philosophical and theological foundations of their scientific endeavors. In so doing, Fr. Jaki argues, they might well discover that they are wholly dependent upon the Christian view of the cosmos (the Triune Gods intelligible creation) when they reach a verifiable scientific conclusion. Moreover, Jesus Christ can be the savior of science and of mens intellects. That is, those who cleave to Christ and to His revelation will have illumined intellects, the basis of genuine scientific insights. Those, however, who deny Christ and His doctrine will inescapably suffer, not only spiritually but intellectually. Practically speaking, the saving of the empirical sciences will come about only when scientists embrace a properly Catholic metaphysics illumined by supernatural revelation.