Benedict XVI (Ratzinger) on Faith

Joel has written a post entitled “Faith Beyond Thought” in which he links to one of my previous posts.   He discusses the idea of faith being a pledge or commitment.  I thought this quote from Benedict the XVI (in his previous days as Cardinal Ratzinger was a fitting follow up).  It comes from his Introduction to Christianity:

… faith is located in the act of conversion, in the turn of one’s being from worship of the visible and practicable to trust in the invisible.  The phrase “I believe” could here be literally translated by “I hand myself over to,” “I assent to.”  In the sense of the Creed, and by origin, faith is not a recitation of doctrines, an acceptance of theories about things of which in themselves one knows nothing and therefore asserts something all the louder; it signifies an all-encompassing movement of human existence; to use Heidegger’s language, one can say that it signifies an “about-turn” by the whole person that from then on constantly structures one’s existence…..


  • Jeremy, thanks for the link.

    I would agree with the then Cardinal, as faith is something more than have been thought for the past, say 500, years, but something living.

    I have to wonder how much the loss of a life of faithful living has contributed to the rise of atheism. When we loose our connection to the exercise of the faith, we tend to loose the value of belief.

    • Well, I always say it’s never just one thing, but I would have to say that is probably a pretty big thing. I think at least Benedict XVI would agree with that.