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yah, as long as he teaches them that Adam and Eve’s sin was a sin of pride not a sin of ‘not protecting Eve and the garden’. That’s the biggie— I know he has toned down his language on that since he received a lot of legit criticism from other theologians on that subject. He has some theological speculations (which is fine)– I just wish he wouldn’t test and publish his theories to the Masses of populations (and classrooms of students). Instead he could engage other intelligent theologians in discourse over his very intelligent but NEW theories.
I do think he does a lot of great things for the Church I just wish he would bounce his ideas off of other intellectuals like most intellectuals do instead of publishing it to the masses (which is his main audience). As I said in recent years he has calmed down his description of the Fall a lot. But in Genesis he will still say that Adam was afraid of the “nahash” (serpent) which is part of the reason he didn’t protect his wife/garden and with that he sins. But it would be impossible (in Thomistic thinking) for him to have that type of irrational fear pre-fall. That type of fear would be from the result of our fallen nature with ill-ordered appetites and emotions. Furthermore, if he had that type of fear it would take the culpability away from the sin that made all of humanity fall out of God’s grace. It doesn’t add up. I know he has received a lot of criticism for this and I’m still hoping he’ll come around as he has some already. People also tend to have problems with his discussions involving the Holy Spirit being feminine. He has calmed that down a lot too. There are other things that bother me as well. But all in all I think he has been great for the Church and he is way more orthodox than a lot of other so called theologians. One more thing:: I agree he is not above criticism but that’s what other orthodox theologians kind of get irritated about. They would rather he publish his stuff to them in intellectual journals again to discuss and for them to critique like other theologians do before he brings his thoughts to everyone else. And– I do admit I’m thankful that someone is publishing for the average joe Catholic (who doesn’t have their theology degree) because we did/and do need that. Everyone needs to grow in knowledge of their faith and holiness.
I’m trying not to sound too cavalier in my approach and criticism of Hahn. I had not read that article before. It was mean-spirited and not helpful. Ad hominem only weakens arguments. I do not doubt that Hahn’s intentions are very pure and good. He’s extremely gifted in revealing the scriptures and exploring typology themes throughout the Bible. I think it would behoove him to read some Thomas Aquinas. Thomas gives one a fantastic philosophy and base/lens to see the world through and interpret the scriptures with. In the meantime, I do know of several orthodox theologians who taught me this viewpoint in both my undergrad (2005) and graduate school (2010). It’s a little close to home for me since I know my brother (who specializes in Thomas and moral theology) wrote on it a few years ago. I can call him tonight no problem.
The NOR response to Dr. Hahn’s defense was hilariously inept. First, they accuse him of calling the Holy Spirit feminine, but can only produce quotes where he indicates the words in gendered languages referring to the Holy Spirit are feminine. How that translates to the Holy Spirit Himself being feminine is anyone’s guess. Oh, and the last statement in that first section was a quote from Edith Stein – not Hahn’s words and no indication of whether Hahn took them to mean that the Holy Spirit should be thought of as feminine. I love the rapier thrust with what turns out to be a wet spaghetti noodle: “You wrote it. How can you deny it?”
Second, they say “No ‘He’ (the Holy Spirit) can be bridal or maternal.” Apparently they are forgetting Hahn is talking about God, who is neither male nor female. He, as neither, can act bridal or maternal as much as He likes (which is what Hahn is saying – not “being” bridal or maternal, as NOR alleges). He is not restricted to gendered actions as gendered beings, like humans, are restricted.
This apparently was someone’s thesis at Christendom College. I thought it was well worded in explaining the issue with Original Sin and Hahn. And your description of completely discrediting Hahn for a few ideas people think need to be tweaked is spot on. http://www.christendom.edu/graduate/pdfs/papers/Brendan%20Graves%20Virtues%20paper.pdf
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