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Beda Mayr

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A Bavarian Benedictine philosopher, apologist, and poet, b. 15 January, 1742 at Daiting near Augsburg ; d. 28 April, 1794, in the monastery of Heillgenkreuz in Donauworth. After studying at Scheyern, Augsburg, Munich and Freiburg im Breisgau, he took vows in the Benedictine monastey of Heiligenkreuz on 29 September, 1762, studied theology at the common study-house of the Bavarian Benedictines in Benediktbeuern, was ordained priest on January, l 766, taught mathematics, philosophy, rhetoric, theology arld canon law at his monastery, where he was also librarian and, for some time, prior. The last 28 years of his life he spent in his monastery, with the exception of four years during which he was pastor of Mundling. He was an exemplary religious and a popular preacher, but, as a philosopher, he was imbued with the subjectivistic criticism of Kant and, as a theologian, he was irenic beyond measure. In a letter to Henry Braun, superintendent of the Bavarian schools, he sets forth the opinion that a unification of the Catholic and the Protestant religion is possible. Braun published this letter without the consent of the author under the title "Der erste Schritt zur künftigen Vereinigung der katholischen und evangelischen Kirche" (Munich, 1778). In consequence Mayr was censured by the Bishop of Augsburg and temporarily forbidden to teach theology. His chief work, "Vertheidigung der natürlichen, christlichen und katholischen Religion nach den Bedürfnissen unserer Zeiten" in three parts (Augsburg, 1787-90)) is equally irenic and permeated with the philosophy of Kant. It was placed on the Index in 1792 and ably refuted by the ex-Jesuit Hochbichler ex-Jesuit Hoehbichler (Augsburg, 1790). Lindner (infra) enumerates 58 literary productions of Mayr. They include 21 dramas, four volumes of sermons (Augsburg, 1777), numerous occasional poems, and various treatises on philosophical, theological, and mathematical subjects.

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