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Veritatis Splendor

"Keep your eyes fixed upon Jesus, who inspires and perfects our faith" --Hebrews 12:2


Pope Benedict XVI before our Lord

And only where God is seen does life truly begin. Only when we meet the living God in Christ do we know what life is. We are not some casual and meaningless product of evolution.
Each of us is the result of a thought of God.
Each of us is willed,
each of us is loved,
each of us is necessary.
There is nothing more beautiful than to be surprised by the Gospel, by the encounter with Christ. There is nothing more beautiful than to know Him and to speak to others of our friendship with Him.
~Pope Benedict XVI, Homily April 24th, 2005



Friday, December 17, 2004

The *Other* "Five Ways"

Finals are finished!! Whoo-hoo! Christmas vacation here I come!

To celebrate, I thought you might enjoy this rare philosophical document, recently unearthed and forwarded to me by one of my philosophy professors... :)

WHETHER SANTA CLAUS EXISTS?

We proceed thus to the next article:

Objection 1. Presents may be given to us by the good elves, and so there is no need for Santa Claus.

Objection 2. If Santa Claus existed, there would be no chimneys too narrow for him. But there are chimneys too narrow for him, and sometimes none at all. Therefore, Santa Claus does not exist.

On the contrary, Kay Starr says, “I saw Mommy kissing Santa Claus.”

I answer that the first and most manifest way of proving the existence of Santa Claus is the argument from the existence of Christmas trees. It is certain and evident to our senses that some things in this world are Christmas trees. Now no fir tree becomes a Christmas Tree unless it is trimmed. But to be trimmed means that one receives an ornament. And since one cannot go to infinity in the passing on of Christmas tree ornaments, there must be a First Untrimmed Trimmer, and this everyone understands to be Santa Claus.

The second way is from the giving of Christmas presents. In this world we find the giving of Christmas presents. Now he who gives Christmas presents either made them in his workshop, or got them from someone else. And since, if no one makes presents in his workshop, there will not be the giving of Christmas presents, there must exists a First Giver, to which everyone gives the name Santa Claus.

The third way is from the plastic images of Santa Claus. In all department stores we see plastic images which represent Santa Claus. Now these are representations of Santa Claus either because of Santa himself, or because of some other image of Santa. Now there can be no infinite regression in representation, so there must be something which is like Santa Claus because it is Santa Claus.

The fourth way is taken from the degrees of Christmas Spirit. We see that people in the world have more or less of a Christmas Spirit. But “more” or “less” is said only in reference to “most.” So there must be someone who has the most Christmas Spirit, and this someone we call Santa Claus.

The fifth way is taken from the conduct of children who, though lacking intelligence, act for an end, which is shown by their always, or almost always, being good. But children would not be good for Christmas, unless someone insured that they are good. This someone is known by all to be Santa Claus.

Reply Obj. 1. Since the god elves got the presents they give from someone else, they must be, at the very most, Santa’s Helpers; and without someone to help, viz., Santa Claus, there can be no Helpers.

Reply Obj. 2. It is not impossible that Santa Claus use the door like everyone else.


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