Thursday, 6 March 2008

The Problem with Geniuses....

I always worry about Duns Scotus ;not because of what he said; but what people presume he said or through bad deduction conclude what he said - he is forever being rolled out as the herald for the 'New Theology' when he is anything but ; if there was ever a scholastic open to distortion and abuse it is Duns Scotus - because he can very easily be formed into any image the theological commentator wishes , if they are not scrupulously intensive in their research - scotus spends so much of his time qualifying his statements and warning off any inductions from his teachings which could lead to any antagonism with fundamental dogmas.
Bonaventure stated that Aquinas was the father of all Atheists; I think if he had known Duns Scotus he would have called the blessed John the father of all Modernists.

[n.b This bloody brilliant artwork "The Brethren" by Matthew Broadhurst and more
can be found at With kindest regards and thanks to Matthew ; indeed to all artists whose work is here]

If Augustine was spring water, Aquinas mother's milk, Bonaventure a fine Merlot, Duns Scotus is like strong black coffee - inspiring, evocative and envigorating - but too much of it and you'll be running round like a headless chicken, unable to relax or think coherently and very prone to thinking and saying the wrong thing and prone to paranoia and confusion...

He's highly addictive and one must always beware that you don't twist some of his words slightly and be remiss in considering his other conditionals otherwise one ends up abusing him to justify anything you bloody well want to !!!
With Duns Scotus one must NEVER jump to conclusions regarding what he's saying ; yet regrettably that's the problem with him ; he makes it so easy to do exactly that...which is why even now he still puts my head in a spin. Imagine him like a teenage genius ; shooting forth sparks of truth and wonder and insight ; but because he's a genius he expects everyone to understand him and 'keep up' with the argument.

His thought is always alive

He's adorable, more loving than is conceivable, yet so pugnacious that he'd start a fight in an empty room and then end up being the adversary's best friend for life..but he's so unbelievably unreliable,, I would swear he had bipolar disorder because he leaps between the highs and lows with the skill of a mountain goat - I have visions of a crowd of medieval cowled oxford dons singing "how do you solve a problem like Duns Scotus ?"

{originally posted as a reply on THOC}

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