There is no competition between reason and faith, but rather harmony, a senior Catholic leader has said.
Delivering the annual Cardinal John Henry Newman Lecture in Oxford, Cardinal Peter Turkson said that the truth of faith and the truth of reason were not opposed to one another.
Cardinal Turkson, president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, challenged the idea that another reality could not exist simply because it could not be fully understood by human reason.
“Man has made progress in the technical sciences. Man has had noteworthy success in the domain of the material world,” he said, according to the Catholic Herald.
“A being who asks questions and searches for the truth also lives by faith.
“The fact that human reason cannot grasp every reality does not imply the non-existence of such a reality.”
He suggested that the material and spiritual realms required different approaches.
“It would be absurd for a physicist to deny the existence of psychic phenomena, just because they could not be observed by the methodology of physics,” he said.
“Observing this requires a different methodology.”
He went on to suggest that faith and reason were both essential to discovering the truth.
He continued: “The truth of faith cannot be opposed to the truth of reason, but neither can truth be arrived at by reason alone.
“Faith and reason are attracted to each other. There is harmony between the two.
“There is no competition between reason and faith. The service of faith and reason in public life is the establishment of truth.”