Saturday, January 20, 2018

Some Lessons on Imprimatur

A few considerations:

  • 1) From 16th C. to at least Antipope Montini, there was a Church law on any book touching theology, it had to have either imprimatur or imprimi potest, at least a nihil obstat, before it could be in good conscience printed.

  • 2) The nihil obstat was a preliminary. It was usually made not by the bishop himself but by a censor deputatus, usually a Dominican.

  • 3) After the nihil obstat, the bishop could give an imprimi potest or an imprimatur. These are not synonymous.

    Say a learned Jesuit was in 1830 stationed into the diocese of Cork (or clostest corresponding thing, not sure when Cork became a diocese after abolition of Penal Laws in 1830).

    He had been working on a thesis, that the Hebrew which Moses wrote and spoke was not identical to that of the Hebrew Bibles we have (for how vowels are written, this is obvious, since this has changed, the modern system was not around in the time of Moses but he goes further : phonemes, verbal endings and a few more have been continuously updated by the Cohanim scribes, so the language of Hebrew Bible is post-Mosaic, while the texts are not). In 1830, Cork, the bishop does not find this as being of vital interest, but the Jesuit wants to send it to an academy of Oriental languages in Rome. He gets an imprimi potest and prints on his own cost 15 examples, which he then sends to Rome, Paris, Louvain and Salamanca and one or two to some study friends left behind on the Continent.

    If he gets a response, he is of course free to pay for a reprint.

    He then procedes to make a work which is of vital interest to the Church in Ireland and England : a special edition of the Penny Catechism, with a defense against each Protestant charge in more detail. The bishop is interested, he gives an imprimatur. This means, if the Jesuit can't pay for the printing, the bishop will. Why? Because "imprimatur" means "let it be printed" - the bishop is in fact by this note ordering the book to be printed. Obviously, he makes sure the examples are more numerous than 15, and when the stock is sold out, he renews it.

  • 4) The difference between an "imprimi potest" and an "imprimatur" can be paralleled with town councils and architecture. You buy an adjacent property on which the previous building has been torn down, you have a plan for making the ground valuable, you want to build - what you get from the town council is a building permit. However, the town has a need, you have a plan for how the new library should look, your architectural plan is not giving you a building permit, it becomes, if approved, an order by the town to build that library on your plan.

  • 5) It is obviously not just simonistic, but nonsensical to ask a fee for the work of an imprimatur. It is as if the town were asking you to pay a fee for your plan for the new library - your plan for the new library is a service to the town, not to your private interest. You are more likely to get a contractual or prize type reward for proposing your plan. In the same manner, a book of apologetics is a service to the Church - and when a bishop orders it printed, he is more likely to reward the author - if it is not someone who is obliged to live poor and therefore is likely to waver monetary rewards.

  • 6) For an imprimi potest, I don't think that fees would have been charged, as a pre-condition sine qua non, since giving an imprimi potest is an act of jurisdiction, which of the Church should be available also to the poor. Imprimi potests have been given to works by Capuchins and Minims, meaning sometimes obviously to people having no money.

    If a customary fee was usually expected - I don't pretend to know the details - it would be wavered for the poor.

    Precisely as the fees for services of the stola which have sometimes been expected (a parish priest getting a fee for a marriage and so on) would also be often wavered for the poor.

    I think Pope Michael should have at least this in mind before asking me to provide money before he can begin the work involved in an imprimatur.

  • 7) One more.

    Necessitas non habet legem.

    The virtue of Epikeia.

    If at present the one bishop of the Church who has a right to issue imprimatur (as Pope Michael claims to be, and I am so far accepting him as, since ditching Bergoglio and very briefly considering the Feeneyite Argentinian Antipope Alexander, back in 2014), if he can't do so unless pre-paid, and if this clogs both a perhaps valuable work of apologetics and my personal affairs, I am not obliged to wait for a never coming imprimatur.

    It is one thing to say "look here, in that essay you pretended God consists of material atoms, you won't get an imprimatur on that one!" Ever, presumably. If I dispensed myself from obligation of imprimatur for such a thing, it would be rebellion against the Church.

    But it is quite another to say "look here, I can't afford the work for giving you an imprimatur, unless you pay me" - if so, I think I am quite entitled to consider the material difficulties of Pope Michael dispense me from waiting for an imprimatur.

    But this has a consequence : in foreseeable future, Pope Michael won't be able to make the work for an imprimatur procedure. Therefore it is unreasonable for the Church to require one before things get printed.

    Not just for me, but for a lot of other good Catholic writers*. Pope Michael, if indeed the true Pope, cannot afford the luxury to exclude writers because they are poor in money, if they have something to say.

    This means, along with fact that Antipope Montini issued his ruling at a time when very many Catholics certainly really such took him to be the real Pope** and therefore felt free to follow the order as given, one may presume God wanted this freedom to be established for these confused times so that no wasteful waiting should make them even more confused, to be at least probably established.

  • 8) Sorry, was tired and forgot one.

    If people have in general been able to see my blogs for years, and no one has issued any condemnation of what I write in them, I think this amounts to an imprimatur as much as a certain serial non-stoning amounted to God's "neither do I condemn you".

    This I find a reason to waver imprimatur requirement on texts that have been available as blogs for long and where comments have been open to commenters, as is the case on my blogs. But either way, it stands there in my favour.

Do you know how Chesterton defended the Catholic interference with liberty of writing and publishing? By the invention of printing, the act of effectively publishing a book had come into the hands which could affor the invenestment of a printer. This means, the Church was not shutting down a really democratic debate, but one which had taken quite a few notches to becoming an oligarchic one. Note, the advent of internet has changed the situation. The old rule, post-publishing approval or reproval by notified superiors is good enough. As it was for Bishop Tempier.***

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
St Fabian, Pope and Martyr
or 20.I.2018

PS, I forgot to mention another thing I had intended to, also due to fatigue. Some guys seem bent on giving me chances to reconsider myself what I wrote on some occasions. They spam posts, and some of them several times over. Or, one of them does. So, I have published two lists on essays I could have reconsidered and didn't find objectionable, they are called Spammers' Choice! / Choix des spammeurs and Spammers' Choice. While there is exactly one blogger profile, I think the action is a type of plot to "give me a chance" to reconsider - what I still think I considered very correctly./HGL

* Yeah, I just said I am a good Catholic writer. So, a penance for vainglory might be OK, but making it years and years of waiting to get published is not a penance, it is useless waste.

** I speak of the guy often named "Pope Paul VI".

*** Some may know I have published on internet a Latin text and own footnotes on the condemned sentences by Bishop Tempier. It is an "English" copy of the work in which the condemned sentences are ordered by theme, as they were not in the original in Paris. Now, the first group of themes is "errores de deo", but this is chapter VI - which leaves the question what the first five chapters were. In the case of Tempier's original there were however a few known prequels, namely sentencing named authors after their publication - Boethius de Dacia for a work of Averroist tendency or Andrew the Chaplain for a work on love lore (relationship advice or seduction advice). Here is however the text of the syllabus: Index in stephani tempier condempnationes.

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

How Are Russians Reading my English by Google, if so? And What About Tower of Babel?

When I used google translate to translate a passage of the Coran - one I happen not to find objectionable, unlike much else in it - the French result of Arabic input was more or less gibberish.

I think this could explain why someone using Google Translate for Arabic output could also find the resulting Arabic gibberish. But I also said, this could happen with Russian or Ukrainean too. So, let's test it.

First, I verify, is Russian or Ukrainean really relevant, do I have readers there? Yes : 10 Jan 2018 10:00 – 17 Jan 2018 09:00 : Italy 144 United States 98 Ukraine 47 France 41 Russia 21 China 10 United Kingdom 9 Indonesia 8 Algeria 7 South Korea 7. (This blog).

Next, let's chose a text which will not blaspheme if translated very badly (even if a machine translation translating badly can't blaspheme the Bible, just show the limits of the machine):

Genesis 11:1-9
Douay Rheims
And the earth was of one tongue, and of the same speech.
And when they removed from the east, they found a plain in the land of Sennaar, and dwelt in it.
And each one said to his neighbour: Come, let us make brick, and bake them with fire. And they had brick instead of stones, and slime instead of mortar.
And they said: Come, let us make a city and a tower, the top whereof may reach to heaven: and let us make our name famous before we be scattered abroad into all lands.
And the Lord came down to see the city and the tower, which the children of Adam were building.
And he said: Behold, it is one people, and all have one tongue: and they have begun to do this, neither will they leave off from their designs, till they accomplish them in deed.
Come ye, therefore, let us go down, and there confound their tongue, that they may not understand one another's speech.
And so the Lord scattered them from that place into all lands, and they ceased to build the city.
And therefore the name thereof was called Babel, because there the language of the whole earth was confounded: and from thence the Lord scattered them abroad upon the face of all countries.

Russian Synodal Version
На всей земле был один язык и одно наречие.
Двинувшись с востока, они нашли в земле Сеннаар равнину и поселились там.
И сказали друг другу: наделаем кирпичей и обожжем огнем. И стали у них кирпичи вместо камней, а земляная смола вместо извести.
И сказали они: построим себе город и башню, высотою до небес, и сделаем себе имя, прежде нежели рассеемся по лицу всей земли.
И сошел Господь посмотреть город и башню, которые строили сыны человеческие.
И сказал Господь: вот, один народ, и один у всех язык; и вот что начали они делать, и не отстанут они от того, что задумали делать;
сойдем же и смешаем там язык их, так чтобы один не понимал речи другого.
И рассеял их Господь оттуда по всей земле; и они перестали строить город.
Посему дано ему имя: Вавилон, ибо там смешал Господь язык всей земли, и оттуда рассеял их Господь по всей земле.

Google Translate
English from Russian
All over the earth there was one language and one dialect.
Moving from the east, they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there.
And they said one to another, Let us make bricks and burn them with fire. And they began to have bricks instead of stones, and earth resin instead of lime.
And they said, Let us build ourselves a city and a tower, which is high up to the heavens, and make ourselves a name, before we are scattered about the face of the whole earth.
And the LORD went down to see the city and the tower that the sons of men built.
And the LORD said, Behold, one people, and one tongue all; and that's what they began to do, and they will not leave behind what they planned to do;
Let us go down and mix their language there, so that one does not understand the speech of the other.
And the Lord scattered them from thence throughout all the earth; and they stopped building the city.
Therefore the name is given to him: Babylon, for there the Lord confused the language of all the earth, and from there the Lord scattered them throughout all the earth.

Note well, the Russian synodal version mistranslates verse 4. The google translate to English was not a mistranslation by machine.

The LXX, which would seem to be the original for Synodal version, does not make the same fault, it has καὶ πύργον οὗ ἡ κεφαλὴ ἔσται ἕως τοῦ οὐρανοῦ - and a tower, of which the top is into the heaven. This is consistent with the tower being a rocket and the top being step 3. The Russian Synodal translation does not translate these words literally, and its choice of interpretation is basically a "skyscraper" or possibly a skyline - which connects to two patristic interpretations of what the object was, but disconnects from the at least Augustinian (as well as Hebrew) interpretation of what it was for.

As to verse 9, I don't think Babylon need be considered a mistranslation.

Nimrod can have named Göbekli Tepe Bab-Ilu - gate of gods - just as successors of his named a city further south so. If Nimrod meant Babel as a quest to get to heaven by local motion in our mortal bodies, I think rockets make more sense than skyscrapers, even back then. And Bab-Ilu would have been a fitting name.

The point is, he would have succeeded with a rocket as badly as Leonardo if he had tried his own prototype airplanes. But Uranium as rocket fuel is not such a joke as one man falling from a tall house in a heavy box of wood with useless wings.

God preserved him from even trying, by making him incapable of communicating with his workforce. Imagine Putin at Sotchi and him asking a question and getting an answer like "yo no comprendo" because the other guy has by divine fiat started speaking Spanish instead of Russian. That is what happened to Nimrod, happily enough.

Why does the Bible translate so much better on google translate than the Coran? It is very simple syntax, very unrhetorical.

Not laden with figures of speech that don't correspond when translated (that said, where the Bible has a figure of speech, it is probably part of the culture of English or French already, unlike those in the Coran).

I might hope my prose translates better than the Coran, but I think it probably translates worse than the Bible. It is more rhetoric and more complex, therefore more sensitive to bungling translations.

This is one reason why I think Russians have been thinking my English is bad (even here, while it is understandable, the English is clumsier than Douay Rheims, like a foreigner retelling parts in children's language - especially "mix their language", though probably or at least possibly one method God could have used : mixing the Hebrew already there with a "sound change applier" or sth, and also mixing word meanings. But probably not the only one, though that could explain the existance of Semitic or Afro-Asiatic language family.

By the way, let's see if Ukrainean translates verse 4 better?

І сказали вони: Тож місто збудуймо собі, та башту, а вершина її аж до неба. І вчинімо для себе ймення, щоб ми не розпорошилися по поверхні всієї землі.

And they said: "Let us build a city for us, and a tower, and its summit up to heaven." And we shall make a name for ourselves, that we may not be scattered on the surface of all the earth.

Ah, yes, it does. "and its summit up to heaven". Step 3 is the summit of a three step rocket.

Hans Georg Lundahl
Nanterre UL
St. Anthony the Great

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Did Popes Claim to Be God? No.

A just possibly correct Latin text, to the left, a false English translation to the right:

Credere autem Dominum Deum nostrum Papam-conditorem dictae decratelis, et istius, sinc non potuisse statuere, prout statuit, haereticum censeretur.

Quoted in John Treat, The Catholic Faith, or, Doctrines of the Church of Rome contrary to Scripture (1888) : 536.

His translation is:

"but to believe that our Lord God the Pope, the establisher of said decretal, and of this, could not decree as he did decree, should be accounted heretical."

A better translation (if the reference is genuine) is:

But to believe that our Lord God could not so constitute the Pope - author of said decretal and the other one - as he did constitute him, would be accounted heretical.

I am a Latinist.

I can tell you that the translator simply fucked up which accusative should be the subject one in accusative and infinitive clause and which one was only object in the clause and would have been in accusative whatever kind of clause it was.

This is one of the cases where Latin has some ambiguity, and some people are either incompetent at Latin or jumping to the reading which would damn papacy as papolatry./HGL

PS. See also:

Beati mundo corde : The truth about the anti-Catholic charge of “Lord God the Pope”

I found it after publishing above. I copy the conclusions:

  • i) The interpolated (possibly forged?)statement does not appear in the original, but only in copies dated many years (in the case of the Paris edition, over 350 years (1325 till 1685) after the original was written.
  • ii) As glosses of their very nature deal with commentaries on canon law, they are unrelated to doctrine or doctrinal pronouncements and are not issued by the pope. Hence this inserted text could not be used (even if present in the original) as proof the pope was teaching falsehood.
  • iii) The insertion of a forger of these words at a later date do not in any way affect the truth of the divine institution of the papacy, any more than insertion of words into a copy of the Bible changes the Bible’s authenticity.
  • iv) The statement of one Father A. Pereira (see below) is invalid for the same reason mentioned in iii)

In other words, possibly even the quote by John Treat is a fake, possibly the Paris edition inserted sth meaning sth else, like what I translated. If it is a fake, 1685 is a year in which Protestants, Gallicans and Jansenists were already around and eager to smudge the Papal supremacy in the Church for diverse reasons (heresy in Protestants, patriotism of exaggerated and misplaced type in Gallicans, heretic opinion verging on and leading later to schism in Jansenists). So, there is nothing totally improbable in it being a fake./HGL

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Which one is from Codex Vaticanus?

I found the first one on a video about 666 trying to link it to Muslims.

I found the second one on a wikipedian article on Codex Vaticanus.

It is very possible that Codex Vaticanus is a very early one, and is from 350 AD, it is according to wikipedian article from 4th C.

It is NOT very probable that Chi - Xi - Stigma look as above version in it, since the type of letters only came around much later, Codex Vaticanus being an Uncial Codex and the above version being a minuscule lettering and the succession of Greek writings being, as for Latin, Majuscule, Uncial and Minuscule.

How exactly do Chi and Xi look in Uncial?

Found in Antiquity : How to write Greek Uncial
Posted on March 31, 2014 by Carla Schodde

In the video, there are no ligatures, just the alphabet. Stigma is lacking.

However, since Omicron is directly after Xi and Omega after Chi and Psi, here are the Greek letters for 60 and for 600:

Especially the Uncial Xi is not very like the Minuscule which can be turned around for relooking like Arabic letters, is it?

And the Minuscule is not from Late Antiquity, but from Middle Ages./HGL

PS, found Uncial version of Stigma on French wiki: