We are in a time when priests and bishops are not to be trusted. It’s already said. Before, paying attention to what the pastors of the Church said was a sure guarantee of truth and salvation in the face of lies or confusion in the world. Today this is no longer so. And you don’t know how much it’s hurting me to write it! But it is sadly true. Don’t trust us anymore. Go to the Catechism and the Magisterial documents: they will tell you what the truth is and which pastors you can trust. Today on Twitter I found this disaster. I also leave the image in case they delete the tweet.
It belongs to the Madrid priest Pablo D’Ors, who was also appointed adviser to the Pontifical Council for Culture of the Vatican Curia. This priest is making a syncretism between the New Age, Zen Buddhism and Christianity. He has been doing it for years without anyone telling him anything at all. His book Biography of Silence, which I have read, is a sad effort to bring positions between two irreconcilable realities closer, reducing prayer to simple mindfulness, no matter how much he wants to disguise it. It is not just that he is causing a lot of confusion among the faithful – which he is doing – and not only is he not given notice, but he has even been advocated to the point of becoming a member of a Dicastery of the Holy See .
In another time the heretic would have been invited to recant. But in this time he covers everything with a mantle of silence and good spirit. And of course, then the dwarves grow up. And we got to this point: comparing Jesus Christ, the son of God made man, eternal as God who is, omnipotent, omnipresent, the only Mediator between God and men, with the Buddha, a simple Indian prince come to less. And Pablo D’Ors does it with this image in which he places both with the halo of holiness, on equal terms, saying that we must seek what unites us and not what separates us.
Pablo, by putting this image precisely you are trying to deny what separates us and, by doing so, you put it in the arena, making it shine in the worst possible way. The Buddha is not God. Buddhism is not the revealed religion, but an inner path in search of serenity. Jesus is not an enlightened person (buddha), but the Light of the world (Jn 8, 12). He is not just another teacher of many who have tried unsuccessfully to give meaning to life, but the Divine Master, the Word of God who truly reveals God and fully reveals man to man himself, and reveals to him the greatness of his vocation, the meaning of his life (Gaudium et Spes 22). If the Buddha Siddharta Gautama had known who Jesus was, he would have thrown himself at his feet and would have had everything he had discovered as dung, as he did to Saint Paul (Phil 3, 8).
Do we have something in common with Buddhists? Clear. We are human beings in search of happiness, we avoid violence and we believe in the importance of interiority. Little more. They believe in the annihilation of themselves through nirvana, we believe in the glorification of the flesh through the resurrection from the dead. They believe in reincarnation, we know that the destiny of men is to die only once, and, after death, judgment (Heb 9, 27). They practice compassion with their neighbor as a means to achieve enlightenment, we as an end in itself following the Lord’s commands and out of love. They do not believe in sin, nor in the existence of an objective truth; his only goal is to end all suffering in his life through a spirituality that centers man in himself; Buddhism is simply a way, like so many others, that try to contribute something to man, while Jesus Christ is the only Way (Jn 14, 6), the only Door (Jn 10, 7), the only Name in which gives us salvation (Acts 4, 12). And Buddhist meditation is a simple methodology to clear our minds and avoid suffering, while Christian prayer is putting ourselves before a personal Other that takes us out of ourselves and fills our prayer with content.
Enough of confusion. We Catholics have the happiness, the joy, the luck, of knowing the true religion. Why this constant attempt to change it and adapt it to what the world is willing to tolerate? It escapes no one that Buddhist spirituality is in vogue in the West, and that this attempt to make Christ drinkable through Zen is a simple effort to look good with everyone, at the price of denying truths of our faith, or silencing it, at the price of lowering Christ to the level of a mere unassuming man. The world accepts with applause that we think that Jesus was a simple teacher on the same level as others. But he rages and is consumed with anger when we uncover his unique claim: to be the Word of God, the only Truth, the only Way.
Dear Pablo: abandon this path that you have taken. Come back to the Catholic truth. And if you are not going to do it, please, give up the media and publications, to write, withdraw your writings, stop dragging people down the path of confusion. Stop abusing your position within the Church to spread error. The day you were ordained a priest, you swore to defend the Magisterium, both ordinary and extraordinary, and you are not doing it. Think, for example, of the Dominus Iesus declaration, which clearly goes against what the image you have published expresses. And if you’re not willing to do it, leave. No problem. If you don’t agree with the Magisterium, go and found something, whatever you want. But don’t give us a pig for a poke. Jesus has nothing to do with the buddha. And, either you know, and you are confusing, or you don’t know, and you don’t know your faith. In any case, you cannot stay as you are.
I apologize to all the faithful whom we, the pastors of the Church, are confusing. I’m sorry with all my heart. We have failed you. We have stopped being what we are called to be. And I fear that the sheep will scatter. For this reason I ask you: remain faithful to the deposit of faith, to the Tradition of the Church, to the Magisterium, collected in the Catechism of the Catholic Church and in other documents that continue the Tradition. They will tell you which cures you can trust. Don’t lose faith. Comfort times will come. Now it’s time to persevere.
Sad confusion of Christ and the Buddha. Open letter to Pablo D’ors