This book investigates the central role of reason in Islamic intellectual life. Despite widespread characterization of Islam as a system of belief based only on revelation, John Walbridge argues that rational methods, not fundamentalism, have characterized Islamic law, philosophy and education since the medieval period. His research demonstrates that this medieval Islamic rational tradition was opposed by both modernists and fundamentalists, resulting in a general collapse of traditional Islamic intellectual life and its replacement by more modern but far (...) shallower forms of thought. However, the resources of this Islamic scholarly tradition remain an integral part of the Islamic intellectual tradition and will prove vital to its revival. The future of Islam, Walbridge argues, will be marked by a return to rationalism. (shrink)
Dialogue with three major Muslim authors shows that Islam can take a positive stance toward human rights while also presenting differing interpretations of the meaning and scope of rights. Because of their subordination of norms reached through reason to those drawn from faith, as well as negative experiences of the impact of Western colonization of parts of the Muslim world, Abul A‘la Maududi and Sayyid Qutb place significant restrictions on rights of conscience. 'Abdolkarim Soroush's positive support for (...) the role of reason in Islamic faith and his less-negative assessment of the West lead him to more vigorous support for the human rights agenda. This study raises the question of whether the humility needed in comparative ethics and the respect for others at the root of human rights are necessarily linked. (shrink)
Athens or Jerusalem? By Tertullian.--Philosophy the handmaid of theology, by Clement of Alexandria.--Faith in search of understanding, by St. Augustine.--Revelation and analogy, by St. Thomas Aquinas.--The mystic way, by M. Eckhart.--The darkened intellect, by J. Calvin.--The reasons of the heart, by B. Pascal.--Faith, reason, and enthusiasm, by J. Locke.--Miracles and the skeptic, by D. Hume.--The limits of reason, by I. Kant.--Truth and subjectivity, by S. Kierkegaard.--In justification of faith, by W. James.--Religion as poetry, by G. (...) Santayana.--Faith and symbols, by P. Tillich.--Three parables on falsification, by A. Flew, R. M. Hare, and B. Mitchell.--For further reading (p. 233-235). (shrink)
Faith and Reason displays in historical perspective some of the rich dialogue between religion and philosophy over two millennia, beginning with Greek reflections about God and the gods and ending with twentieth-century debate about faith in a world which tends to reserve its reverence for science. Paul Helm uses as a case study the question of whether the world is eternal or whether it was created out of nothing, following this theme from Plato through medieval thought to (...) modern scientific speculation about the beginnings of the universe. This Oxford Reader also includes discussion of many other fundamental issues raised by the juxtaposition of faith and reason, including arguments for and against the existence of God, the relationship between religion and ethics, the contrast between reason and revelation as sources of knowledge, and the implications of religious belief for freedom of the will. (shrink)
Introduction: "Know yourself" -- The revelation of God's wisdom -- Credo ut intellegam -- Intellego ut credam -- The relationship between faith and reason -- The interventions of the Magisterium in philosophical matters -- The interaction between philosophy and theology -- Current requirements and tasks -- Conclusion.
Faith and reason in the Church Magisterium from Pius IX to Fides et ratio -- Pius IX (1846-1878) between the Qui pluribus and the syllabus -- Faith and reason in the First Vatican Council -- From the syllabus to the First Vatican Council -- Constitution Dei filius -- Leo XIII and the Aeterni patris -- Faith and reason in the light of Fides et ratio -- Fides et ratio after Dei filius and Aeterni patris: (...)faith and reason -- Truth, foundation and metaphysics -- Historical reconstruction of Chapter IV -- Patristic and Medieval period -- Faith and reason in the modern age -- For a comprehensive review -- Difference and reciprocity of faith and reason -- Stressing difference: S. Kierkegaard -- Stressing reciprocity and circularity -- Crisis of reason and of the relationship reason-truth -- Post-modernity as the name of contemporary times. a brief analysis -- Going beyond the reductionism of post-modern reason -- Faith and reason: a necessary encounter, if both are "loyal" to themselves. (shrink)
Initial sketch of a concept of faith -- Facets of faith -- Faith and knowledge -- Faith and scientific knowledge -- Faith and morality -- Secular forms of faith -- Crises of faith -- My personal journey of faith.
A Kantian beginning : Georg Hermes -- A Catholic Hegel? Anton Günther -- The response of fideism : Louis Bautain -- Magisterial interventions : Gregory XVI and Pius IX -- Return to the schoolmen : Joseph Kleutgen and Leo XIII -- Embodying the Leonine project : Etienne Gilson -- The philosophy of action : Maurice Blondel -- The dispute over apologetics : from Blondel to Balthasar -- A synthetic outcome? John Paul II's letter Fides et ratio -- From Cracow to (...) Regensburg : Benedict XVI. (shrink)
Religious faith is often critiqued as irrational either because its beliefs do not rise to the level of knowledge as defined by some philosophical theory or because it rests on emotion rather than knowledge. Or both. Kierkegaard helps us to see how these arguments rest on a misunderstanding of all three terms: faith, reason, and emotion.
Faith, Reason, and Revelation in the Thought of Theodore Beza investigates the direction of religious epistemology under a chief architect of Calvinism (1519-1605). Mallinson contends that Beza consolidated his tradition by balancing the subjective and objective aspects of faith and knowledge. Making use of new editions of Beza's class notes and correspondence, and examining the theological ideas found in Beza's long-neglected New Testament annotations, this study clarifies the thought of Calvin's successor. The nature of Protestant scholasticism and (...) the relationship between faith and philosophy are observed in context, rather than from the anachronistic perspectives of modern schools that seek to establish their own continuity with Calvinism. (shrink)
There are two connected illusions which have become very common today. The first consists in marking a very sharp distinction between reason and faith—even to the point of defining faith as believing without good reason! The second is to take as a model of rationality what we might call “disengaged” reason. One illusion exaggerates the capacities of “reason alone” (allusion to Kant intended); the second sees reason as essentially “dispassionate.” Moreover, the two are (...) closely linked. This paper argues against both, while exploring the link. (shrink)
The paper begins by challenging a received view of Descartes as preoccupied with scepticism and setting out entirely on his own to build up everything from scratch. In reality, his procedure in the Meditations presupposes trust in the mind’s reliable powers of rational intuition. God, the source of those powers, is never fully eclipsed by the darkness of doubt. The second section establishes some common links between the approach taken by Descartes in the Meditations and the ‘faith seeking understanding’ (...) tradition. So far from insisting on the autonomy and independence of human inquiry, Descartes sees the meditator as finding freedom in spontaneous submission to both the natural light of reason and also the supernatural light of faith. The approach to God which lies at the heart of the Meditations in some ways resembles a direct cognitive encounter as much as a formal demonstrative proof. The paper’s final section deals with Descartes’ ‘incarnational’ theodicy of the passions. Lacking the clarity and transparency of intellectual perceptions, the passions can often lead to confusion and error. Nevertheless they are part of the (divinely bestowed) endowment of our human nature, which is not a pure intellect plugged into a machine, but a genuine psycho-physical unity. The passions can serve as valued auxiliaries of reason in the search for goodness and truth. (shrink)
This essay considers and rejects both the irrationalist and the supra-rationalist interpretations of Kierkegaard, arguing that a new category---Kierkegaard as “anti-rationalist”---is needed. The irrationalist reading overemphasizes the subjectivism of Kierkegaard’s thought, while the suprarationalist reading underemphasizes the degree of tension between human reason (as corrupted by the will’s desire to be autonomous and self-sustaining) and Christian faith. An anti-rationalist reading, I argue, is both faithful to Kierkegaard’s metaphysical and alethiological realism, on the one hand, and his emphasis on (...) the continuing opposition between reason and faith, on the other, as manifested in the ongoing possibility of offense (reason’s rejection of the Christian message) in the life of the Christian. (shrink)
This paper examines how the faith/reason discussion can be expanded by means of culture and analogous language. The author argues that rationaldialogue can occur between different faith traditions, and without having to raise reason to the ideal of enlightenment objectivity or having to jettison reasonthrough some form of relativism. He argues that cultural shifts effect alterations in our very “criteria of rationality” so that our efforts to grasp others’ practices inmatters that challenge our presumed categories often (...) reveal lacunae in our very own presumptions. The author further argues that a prerequisite for dialogue isa shared interest in pursuing the truth; thus the pursuit of truth transcends any given conceptuality. Accordingly, rationality can show itself in practices that canbe followed and understood by persons operating on the basis of different grounding convictions. (shrink)
My question is simple: how shall we Christians deal with apparent conflicts between faith and reason, between what we know as Christians and what we know in other ways, between teaching of the Bible and the teachings of science? As a special case, how shall we deal with apparent conflicts between what the Bible initially seems to tell us about the origin and development of life, and what contemporary science seems to tell us about it? Taken at face (...) value, the Bible seems to teach that God created the world relatively recently, that he created life by way of several separate acts of creation, that in another separate act of creation, he created an original human pair, Adam and Eve, and that these our original parents disobeyed God, thereby bringing ruinous calamity on themselves, their posterity and the rest of creation. (shrink)