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But if the doctrine in question has not been expressly "defined" or is not clearly proposed as an article of faith in the ordinary, authorized teaching of the Church, an opinion opposed to it is styled sententia haeresi proxima , that is, an opinion approaching heresy. Their system, replete with so many errors, had its origin in the wedding of false philosophy with faith " (Encycl. In the last instance, they appeal to the sacred voice of their individual conscience which forbids them outwardly to profess what inwardly they honestly hold to be untrue. (b) Spread of Heresy The growth of heresy, like the growth of plants, depends on surrounding influences, even more than on its vital force.
On the other hand the will may freely incline the intellect to adhere to tenets declared false by the Divine teaching authority of the Church.
A man born and nurtured in heretical surroundings may live and die without ever having a doubt as to the truth of his creed.
On the other hand a born Catholic may allow himself to drift into whirls of anti-Catholic thought from which no doctrinal authority can rescue him, and where his mind becomes incrusted with convictions, or considerations sufficiently powerful to overlay his Catholic conscience. Thomas, in the strict sense, are they who of their own will and intention separate themselves from the unity of the Church.
The guilt of heresy is measured not so much by its subject-matter as by its formal principle, which is the same in all heresies: revolt against a Divinely constituted authority. The simplicity of the solution, the ostentatious zeal of Arius for the defence of the "one God", his mode of life, his learning and dialectic ability won many to his side.
(a) Origin of Heresy The origin, the spread, and the persistence of heresy are due to different causes and influenced by many external circumstances. In particular he was supported by the famous Eusebius of Nicomedia who had great influence on the Emperor Constantine .