I was thinking about Fr. Barron’s comments in this video: youtube.com/watch?v=m_4PSgFjtvI
And I thought about applying it to my relationship to each of you, and you can use this as a sort of thought experiment with others. How do you know that I exist? How do you know that I have a mind, that I can think, that I have free will? How do you know that I am a person at all, and not just a bunch of organized sense impressions? Can you know that another person exists with a heart, soul, and mind, without interacting with them, and speaking to them, and waiting for them to speak? What if we all just said, “I am not going to believe that is a person with an intellect and will, until I have an absolute analytical proof in formal deductive terms.”
These are just some reflections I had. I mostly want to hear what other Catholics think of this. But others can chime in as well. I specifically termed the question “How do YOU know that I exist?” because it challenges the other person to enter into a relationship to myself. It is ultimately the foundation of all morality, because it is the foundation of all human relationships. “How do you know that I am a person like you?” How do we know that we are persons, and not just automatons, or collections of biological material. How do we know that we each have souls, and minds, and hearts, and bodies. None of these concepts or pricniples can be found in the objects of the senses. They have an immaterial elements that reflects universal principle. The principle of personhood, or personalism is the most fundamental principle of existence, because the source of all existence, and existence itself, is not just a principle, but a Person, or three Divine Persons, who know and love each other as Persons, not as things, or principles.
I also want to ask what some of you know or think about the principle of the person or of personhood. Do you know of any good writings on the subject. I know that Pope John Paul II was very adept at this subject, and I think wrote his dissertation Person and Act on the subject.
Any thoughts or suggestions for further reading on the person, personality, development of the personality, etc, human and divine relationships, etc.
God bless you all,