The encyclical Fides Et Ratio was written by Pope John Paul II to his fellow bishops in to address the relationship between faith and. Intended audience of the encyclical: The Bishops of the Catholic Church, Cautionary note: The English translation of Fides et Ratio is not always what it should . for exposing the weakness of reason: “The beginning of the First Letter to the. Encyclical Letter Fides et Ratio, published only last week, I wished to defend the capacity of human reason to know the truth. This confidence in reason is an.

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For the reasons suggested here, it has seemed to me urgent to re-emphasize with this Encyclical Letter the Church’s intense interest in philosophy—indeed the intimate bond which ties theological work to the philosophical search for truth.

In the years after the Second Vatican Council, many Catholic faculties were in some ways impoverished by a diminished sense of the importance of the study not just of Scholastic philosophy but more generally of the study of philosophy itself. Deprived of reason, faith has stressed feeling and experience, and so run the risk of no longer being a universal proposition.

Developing a philosophical argument in popular language, the Apostle declares a profound truth: The end result is the nihilism that we are now experiencing.

Synthesis of the encyclical “Fides et ratio”

Christ as the ultimate truth about human existence: It must, for instance, delineate the range of the natural knowledge of God, articulate the distinction between divine revelation and other forms of human cognition, the nature of faith, the status of language about God, etc. It is at this point in our search that Christ comes to meet us, offering the concrete possibility endyclical the wisdom which we seek.

It is this ragio Saint Augustine teaches when he writes: The Acts of the Apostles provides evidence that Christian proclamation was engaged from the very first with the philosophical currents of the time. And so reason has scope within the context of faith. How can there be an ultimate and unifying meaning of life?


Life in the Spirit leads believers to a freedom and responsibility which surpass the Law. They did not hesitate to present themselves as new religions serving as a basis for projects which, on the political and social plane, gave rise to totalitarian systems which have been disastrous for humanity. Still more, reason must be able to articulate this knowledge in concept and argument.

Here the Holy Father cites Aeterni Patris and rstio positive consequences. Seen in any other terms, the mystery of personal existence remains an insoluble riddle” Yet the positive results achieved must not obscure the fact that reason, in its one-sided concern to leetter human subjectivity, seems to have forgotten that men and women are always called to direct their steps towards a truth which transcends them.

Where is the learned? In the field of scientific research, a positivistic mentality took hold which not only abandoned the Christian vision of the world, but more especially rejected every appeal to a metaphysical or moral vision.

The depth of revealed wisdom disrupts the cycle of our habitual patterns of thought, which are in no way able to express that wisdom in its fullness. These are the Council’s words: Men and women are treated as objects to be manipulated rather eet as persons to be honored.

The chapter deals with the value of the human person created in the image of God, explains the dignity and superiority of the human being over the rest of creation, and declares the transcendent capacity of human reason” For all their difference of method and content, ejcyclical disciplines point to that “path of life” Ps Summaries of Papal Documents by John E. They can make no claim upon this truth which comes to lettfr as gift and which, set within the context of interpersonal communication, urges reason to be open to it and to embrace its profound meaning.


The Gospel is not opposed to any culture, as if in engaging a culture the Gospel would seek to strip it of its native riches and force it to adopt forms which are alien to it.

If I try to count them, they are more than the sand.

Notes on Fides et Ratio

In theology, which draws its principles from Revelation as a new source of knowledge, this perspective is confirmed by the intimate relationship which exists between faith and metaphysical reasoning” Thus the world and the events encycoical history cannot be understood in depth without professing faith in the God who is at work in them.

This is the mode of truth proper to everyday life and to scientific research. A climate of suspicion and distrust, which can beset speculative research, ignores the teaching of the ancient philosophers who proposed friendship as one of the most appropriate contexts for sound philosophical enquiry ” 33 [my italics].

What will there be after this life?

Fides et Ratio (Faith and Reason)

How are we to explain these dynamics? With regard to the source, because we know in one by natural reason, in the other by divine faith. Therefore, if that which until now has been a matter of debate concerning the highest essence has been established on the basis of due reasoning, then the foundation of one’s certainty is not shaken in the least if the intellect cannot penetrate it in a way that allows clear formulation.

The Encyclical appeals to all who are concerned for the truth and are leaders in the fields of thought and culture, that they may focus on what is essential, precluding nothing and setting no limits.