This Dark Age

A manual for life in the modern world.

By Daniel Schwindt

Faith and reason placed in opposition

“Reason is directly opposed to faith and one ought to let it be; in believers it should be killed and buried”

~ Martin Luther[1]

Luther’s ridiculous statement above can be explained as follows.

An interesting consequence of the rise of rationalism is that it renders anything that cannot be strictly “rationalized” irrational, and what is irrational is not true. Thus, any “supra-rational” truths are no long the highest forms of knowledge, but they cannot be considered knowledge at all. And so the work of Aquinas was, it seems, in vain, as Luther teaches us that:

You must abandon your reason, know nothing of it, annihilate it completely or you will never enter heaven. You must leave reason to itself, for it is the born enemy of faith…There is nothing so contrary to faith as law and reason. You must conquer them if you would reach beatitude.[2]

[1] Erlanger Ausgabe, XLIV, 158.

[2] Tischreden. Weimarer Ausgabe, VI, 6718.

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