布朗神父的真理及理智

最近在看著名的英國天主教作家 G. K. Chesterton ,然而不是看他的護教學經典 Heretics, Orthodoxy, 或 The Everlasting Man ,卻是看他用以賺取收入的 Father Brown (布朗神父)系列的偵探小說。

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G. K. Chesterton

但 Chesterton 卻不放棄在小說中表達他的信仰,以下是在 Father Brown 首次出場時,跟假扮成神父的大盜 Flambeau 的對話:

[The fake priest Flambeau:] “Ah, yes, these modern infidels appeal to their reason; but who can look at those millions of worlds and not feel that there may well be wonderful universes above us where reason is utterly unreasonable?"

“No," said the other priest; [Father Brown]reason is always reasonable, even in the last limbo, in the lost borderland of things. I know that people charge the Church with lowering reason, but it is just the other way. Alone on earth, the Church makes reason really supreme. Alone on earth, the Church affirms that God himself is bound by reason."

The other priest raised his austere face to the spangled sky and said:

“Yet who knows if in that infinite universe——?"

Only infinite physically," said the little priest, turning sharply in his seat, “not infinite in the sense of escaping from the laws of truth."

Reason and justice grip the remotest and the loneliest star. Look at those stars. Don’t they look as if they were single diamonds and sapphires? Well, you can imagine any mad botany or geology you please. Think of forests of adamant with leaves of brilliants. Think the moon is a blue moon, a single elephantine sapphire. But don’t fancy that all that frantic astronomy would make the smallest difference to the reason and justice of conduct. On plains of opal, under cliffs cut out of pearl, you would still find a notice-board, ‘Thou shalt not steal.’"

(The Innocence of Father Brown / The Blue Cross)

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