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I don't understand the bolded phrase from HuffPost beneath. How isn't the notion of “throughout-the-whole” identical to 'universal''s 'certain sense of inclusivity' that 'necessarily implies exclusion'?

Imagine that you must color the whole of a sheet of paper with a crayon, without coloring the desk on which it lies! Then your coloring will be bounded by, and demarcate, that sheet's four 'boundary or lines drawn that demarcate those who are “in” and those who are “out.”' This coloring obviously 'bear[s] a certain sense of inclusivity', and 'necessarily implies exclusion for whatever and whoever falls outside' the paper's four edges.

The centerpiece of his research is the etymology or origin of the word “catholic.” While we do commonly use it to mean “universal,” Ong points out that the Latin or Roman Church (as distinct from the Orthodox or Eastern Church) had a word for universal in Latin — universalis. Ong asked:

If “universal” is the adequate meaning of “catholic,” why did the Latin church, which in its vernacular language had the word universalis, not use this word but rather borrowed from Greek the term katholikos instead, speaking of the “one, holy, catholic and apostolic church (to put it into English) instead of the “one, holy, universal and apostolic church”?

Great question!

Ong explains that it has a theological and practical significance. The origin of “universal” in Latin likely comes from the two root-words unum (meaning “one”) and vertere (meaning “turn”). The image it evokes is something like an architect’s compass, which is used to make a circle around “one” central point.

Universal does bear a certain sense of inclusivity, for it gathers everything and everyone that is within the boundary of that line drawn around the circle. Yet, by virtue of the boundary or circle, it necessarily implies exclusion for whatever and whoever falls outside of the “universal” line.

By contrast, katholikos comes from two Greek words: kata or kath (meaning “through” or “throughout”) and holos (meaning “whole”). This notion of “throughout-the-whole” carries no notion of boundary or lines drawn that demarcate those who are “in” and those who are “out.”

The point, Ong suggests, is that the life, ministry and preaching of Jesus of Nazareth also supports this notion of katholikos — “Catholic” — rather than a more exclusive notion of the church as “universal.” He points to Jesus’s very short parable of “the yeast” found in Matthew 13:33 (and Luke 13:21), in which Jesus likens the Kingdom or Reign of God to a woman who makes bread.

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    I wouldn't take the article too seriously: the idea that there is an excluded dark area "beyond" the boundary of something universal simply belies the meaning of the term. – brianpck Aug 7 '19 at 13:26
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As brianpck said in a comment, you should not strive to understand the quoted passage in the first place. It seems to misexplain the etymology of the Latin term universus, and improperly suggest that univers- suggests exclusivity.

The Lewis and Short dictionary says "uni-versus" means universal because it refers to something that has been "turned" (transformed or made) into "one". In other words, the metaphorical meaning of the root -vert- ("turn") here refers to change, not to an action of drawing a line in a circle. If L&S gives the correct explanation of how universus was derived, everything in this part of the quoted passage seems to be unwarranted:

The image it evokes is something like an architect’s compass, which is used to make a circle around “one” central point.

Universal does bear a certain sense of inclusivity, for it gathers everything and everyone that is within the boundary of that line drawn around the circle. Yet, by virtue of the boundary or circle, it necessarily implies exclusion for whatever and whoever falls outside of the “universal” line.

Since you asked about your coloring metaphor by quoting phrases from inside that crossed-out section, which seems to be invalid as an explanation of what either word means, I don't know how to answer your question. Neither universus nor katholikos seems to have an especially strong connotation of a boundary, so I think the hypothesis that a difference in the perceived exclusivity of the terms was the motivation for using katholikos rather than universus is wrong. There does not seem to be such a difference in meaning.

Here's my attempt at discussing your example:

  • If the coloring could be be described as "universal", an etymological explanation of this could be that you "turned the page into one color".

  • If the coloring could be described as "catholic", an etymological explanation of that could be that you "colored throughout the whole of the page".

  • The boundary/edge of the page doesn't seem to be related to either the meaning or the etymology of either word.

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