This essay adds a theological voice to the current debate over the legacy of Gilles Deleuze. It discusses Peter Hallward's charge that Deleuze is best read as a mystical, theophanic philosopher who values creativity to the detriment of real creatures. It argues that while Hallward is right to discern a flight from bodies, relations, and politics in Deleuze, this is due not to Deleuze's contemplative mysticism, but rather to his strident rejection of any transcendence. The essay then draws upon Thomas (...) Merton in order to argue that only a fully contemplative engagement with transcendence allows us to save the sort of radical becoming that Deleuze sought but couldn't achieve. (shrink)
Christian Philosophical Theology constitutes a Christian philosopher's look at various crucial topics in Christian theology, including belief in God, the nature of God, the Trinity, christology, the resurrection of Jesus, the general resurrection, redemption, and theological method. The book is tightly argued, and amounts to a coherent explanation of and case for the Christian world view. Although written from a broadly Reformed Protestant perspective, and although the author does not avoid controversial topics, his aim is to present a (...) `merely Christian' world view (to adapt slightly C. S. Lewis's famous term). That is, he attempts to write as much as possible from the perspective of the broad centre of Christian understanding. (shrink)
Robert Merrihew Adams has been a leader in renewing philosophical respect for the idea that moral obligation may be founded on the commands of God. This collection of Adams' essays, two of which are previously unpublished, draws from his extensive writings on philosophical theology that discuss metaphysical, epistemological, and ethical issues surrounding the concept of God--whether God exists or not, what God is or would be like, and how we ought to relate ourselves to such a being. Adams studies (...) the relation between religion and ethics, delving into an analysis of moral arguments for theistic belief. In several essays, he applies contemporary studies in the metaphysics of individuality, possibility and necessity, and counterfactual conditionals to issues surrounding the existence of God and problems of evil. (shrink)
The paper proposes a novel understanding of how Aristotle’s theoretical works complement each other in such a way as to form a genuine system, and this with the immediate (and ostensibly central) aim of addressing a longstanding question regarding Aristotle’s ‘first philosophy’—namely, is Aristotle’s first philosophy a contribution to theology, or to the science of being in general? Aristotle himself seems to suggest that it is in some ways both, but how this can be is a very difficult question. (...) My answer is in some respects a version of one that goes back at least to the middle ages—i.e., that first philosophy is concerned with the gods (and to that extent offers a theology) because the gods are causes and principles of beings precisely insofar as they are beings. The more original aspect of my position lies in my claim that the sort of tension found in the Metaphysics is likewise to be found in many of Aristotle’s physical works. Thus, for example, the De caelo is (I argue) concerned generally with natural beings (= beings susceptible of change), but its discussions are focused largely on the heavenly bodies and the Aristotelian elements insofar as they admit of change with respect to place. Here I claim that the particular objects of discussion are dealt with precisely because they are causes and principles of natural beings as such. Something similar goes, I claim, for the De generatione et corruptione, the general concern of which is a particular species of natural being—i.e., natural beings susceptible of generation and corruption. In this way, I argue, Aristotle successively deals in his theoretical works with those causes and principles of (say) a horse which attach to it insofar as it is a being, those causes and principles of a horse which attach to it insofar as it is a natural being, those causes and principles of a horse which attach to it insofar as it is a perishable natural being, and so on for the lower genera under which the species horse is subsumed. (shrink)
Thought experiments play an important cognitive role in many fields of inquiry, especially in physics and philosophy. Do they also matter in revealed theology? In addressing this question, I will argue first why it is important to do so, then elaborate on the characteristic features of such thought experiments in revealed theology, and finally discuss two instances of thought experimenting in Augustine.
Nihilism is the logic of nothing as something, which claims that Nothing Is. Its unmaking of things, and its forming of formless things, strain the fundamental terms of existence: what it is to be, to know, to be known. But nihilism, the antithesis of God, is also like theology. Where nihilism creates nothingness, condenses it to substance, God also makes nothingness creative. Negotiating the borders of spirit and substance, theology can ask the questions of nihilism that other disciplines (...) do not ask: Where is it? What is it made of? Why is it so destructive? How can it be made holy, or overcome? Genealogy of Nihilism rereads Western history in the light of nihilistic logic, which pervades two millennia of Western thought and is coming to fruition in our present age in a virulently dangerous manner. From Parmenides to Alain Badiou, via Plotinus, Avicenna, Duns Scotus, Ockham, Descartes, Spinoza, Kant, Hegel, Heidegger, Sartre, Lacan, Deleuze and Derrida, a genealogy of nothingness can be witnessed in development, with devastating consequences for the way we live. Conor Cunningham's elaborate and sophisticated theology, spanning the disciplines of philosophy, science and popular culture, permits us to see not simply how modernity has formulated its philosophies of nothing, but how these philosophies might be transfigures by the crucial difference theology makes, and so be reconcilable with life and the living - with the very gift which being is. (shrink)
Radical Orthodoxy is a new wave of theological thinking that seeks to re-inject the modern world with theology. The group of theologians associated with Radical Orthodoxy are dissatisfied with conteporary theolgical responses to both modernity and postmodernity Radical Orthodoxy is a collection that aims to reclaim the world by situating its concerns and activities within a theological framework. By mapping the new theology against a range of areas where modernity has failed, these essays offer us way out of (...) the impasses that postmodernity represents. (shrink)
The concern of this work is with developing an alternative to standard categories in theology and philosophy, especially in terms of how they deal with nature. Avoiding the polemics of much contemporary reflection on nature, it shows how we are connected to nature through the unconscious and its unique way of reading and processing signs. Spinoza's key distinction between natura naturans and natura naturata serves as the governing framework for the treatise. Suggestions are made for a post-Christian way of (...) understanding religion. Robert S. Corrington's work represents the first sustained attempt to bring together the fields of semiotics, depth-psychology, pragmaticism, and a post-Monotheistic theology of nature. Its focus is on how signification functions in human and non-human orders of infinite nature. Our connection with the infinite is described in detail, especially as it relates to the use of sign systems. (shrink)
Breaking with a Puritan past -- A mother's concern -- Turmoil and diversity in the English Reformation -- The influences and the options available in English -- Reformation theology -- Intellectual trends : patristics and hebrew -- Millennialism and the belief in a providential age -- Bacon's break with the godly -- Bacon's turn toward the ancient faith -- The formative years -- Bacon and Andrewes -- The Meditationes sacrae and Bacon's turn away from calvinism -- Bacon's confession of (...) faith -- In the beginning : the creation of nature and the nature of the fall the instauration as an event in sacred history -- The ages of the world and the chain of causes -- Creation as a pattern for human learning -- Humanity in the garden -- Knowledge and the fall -- Knowledge as a support for the faith -- Human effort as the key to recovery -- On the way of salvation : Bacon's twofold via salutis -- Bbacon and original sin -- Patterns in divine action and prophecies of instauration -- The instauration in the history of providence -- Bacon's providential age -- The conditions for instauration -- In the autumn of the world : features of the age of instauration -- Irenaeus and Francis Bacon on the golden age -- Inaugurated eschatology in Bacon's instauration -- Laborers in the fields of instauration : orders and offices -- Rebuilding the temple of nature -- Human agency and the instauration -- The problem of confusing the two books -- The possibility of immortality -- Bacon's circle and his legacy -- Bacon's literary circle -- Tobie Matthew (1577-1655) -- William Rawley (1588-1667) -- Henry Wotton (15681639) -- Thomas Bushell (1594-1674) -- John Selden (1584-1654) -- George Herbert (1593-1633) -- Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) -- Thomas Bodley (1545-1613) -- Conclusions regarding Bacon's literary circle -- The reform of learning in the Civil War and the commonwealth the restoration and the Royal Society -- The Enlightenment transformation of Bacon's memory. (shrink)
Truth in the Making represents a sophisticated effort to map the complex relations between human knowledge and creative power, as reflected across more than half a millennium of philosophical enquiry. Showing the intimacy of this problematic to the work of Nicholas of Cusa, Bacon, Galileo, Descartes, Hobbes, Leibniz, Vico and David Lachterman, the book reveals how questions about creation apparently diluted by secularism in fact retain much of their potency today. If science could counterfeit or synthesize nature precisely from its (...) smallest nuts and bolts, as Descartes and Hobbes implied and as modern science increasingly suggests, would it create an identical world to that we live in now Robert C. Miner offers a precise genealogy of modern thought on truth and creation: from medieval theology's identification of human creativity with divine initiative to the radical Leibnizian contention that human ideas are 'not little copies of God's', and may at once exceed mimesis and produce things new, unpredictable and unseen. He considers how the theological importance given to creation interacts historically with the secularisation and instrumentalisation of modes of discovery and method, and asks how knowledge is understood between different disciplines, from the allegorical discipline of poetry to the constructible field of mathematics. The book is an eloquent reminder of the ways in which theology continues to fling a wild card at philosophical understandings of reality, countering theories of metaphysical equivalence of the 'real' and 'artificial' with theologies in which human making is always fallible, and strives only for approximate participation in divine truth. As a strenuous and informative breakdown of leading theories of knowledge, Truth in the Making shows the continuing influence of theological questions upon philosophical, scientific and aesthetic disciplines, whilst raising topical questions about the ultimate nature of our reality and our freedom to modify and define it. (shrink)
This book is the culmination of Heinrich Meier's acclaimed analyses of the controversial thought of Carl Schmitt. Meier identifies the core of Schmitt's thought as political theology--that is, political theorizing that claims to have its ultimate ground in the revelation of a mysterious or supra-rational God. This radical, but half-hidden, theological foundation unifies the whole of Schmitt's often difficult and complex oeuvre, cutting through the intentional deceptions and unintentional obfuscations that have eluded previous commentators. Relating this religious dimension to (...) Schmitt's support for National Socialism and his continuing anti-Semitism, Meier compels the reader to come to terms with the irreconcilable differences between political theology and political philosophy. His book will give pause to those who have tended to gloss over the troubling aspects of some of Schmitt's ideas. With editions in German, French, Italian, and now English, Meier's two books on Schmitt have dramatically reoriented the international debate about Carl Schmitt and his significance for twentieth-century political thought. "Standing far above the rest . . . is Heinrich Meier's new study, Die Lehre Carl Schmitts , which covers all of Schmitt's writings. . . . Meier's work has forced everyone to take a second look at the assumptions underlying Schmitt's better-known writings and reconsider some that have been ignored."--Mark Lilla, reviewing the German edition in The New York Review of Books. (shrink)
Crockett develops a constructive radical theology from the philosophy of Kant. Reading The Critique of Judgment back into The Critique of Pure Reason, Crockett draws upon the insights of such continental philosophers as Heidegger, Derrida, Lyotard and Deleuze. This book shows how existential notions of self, time and imagination are interrelated in Kantian thinking, and demonstrates their importance for theology. An original theology of the sublime emerges as a connection is made between the Kantian sublime of the (...) Third Critique and the transcendental imagination of the First Critique. (shrink)
This volume collects for the first time in a single volume all of Kant's writings on religion and rational theology. These works were written during a period of conflict between Kant and the Prussian authorities over his religious teachings. His final statement of religion was made after the death of King Frederick William II in 1797. The historical context and progression of this conflict are charted in the general introduction to the volume and in the translators' introductions to particular (...) texts. All the translations are new with the exception of The Conflict of the Faculties, where the translation has been revised and re-edited to conform to the guidelines of the Cambridge Edition. As is standard with all the volumes in this edition, there are copious linguistic and explanatory notes, and a glossary of key terms. (shrink)
Introduction: Kantian concepts, liberal theology, and post-Kantian idealism -- Subjectivity in question: Immanuel Kant, Johann G. Fichte, and critical idealism -- Making sense of religion: Friedrich Schleiermacher, John Locke, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, and liberal theology -- Dialectics of spirit: F.W.J. Schelling, G.W.F. Hegel, and absolute idealism -- Hegelian spirit in question: David Friedrich Strauss, Søren Kierkegaard, and mediating theology -- Neo-Kantian historicism: Albrecht Ritschl, Adolf von Harnack, Wilhelm Herrmann, Ernst Troeltsch, and the Ritschlian school -- Idealistic ordering: (...) Lux Mundi, Andrew Seth Pringle-Pattison, Hastings Rashdall, Alfred E. Garvie, Alfred North Whitehead, William Temple, and British idealism -- The Barthian revolt: Karl Barth, Paul Tillich, and the legacy of liberal theology -- Idealistic ironies: from Kant and Hegel to Tillich and Barth. (shrink)
An analysis of moral theology, the study of how man must live in order to achieve his highest end, which, according to many theistic outlooks, is union with his maker. A species of theology, it involves the study of things divine, and is distinct from dogmatic theology by virtue of its focus. Whereas dogmatic theology concentrates upon doctrines and articles of faith, moral theology relates, more specifically to the actions of human beings and their relations (...) to God. Moral theology naturally involves a discussion of ethics and the natural law, since this law is recognized also by divine revelation. It is not, however, co-extensive with moral philosophy, since its subject matter derives generally from revelation and theological sources. -/- . (shrink)
This is an analysis of the interpretation of Christian theology that is found in G. W. F. Hegel's Lectures on the Philosophy of Religion. Hodgson argues that these lectures are among the most valuable resources from the nineteenth century for theology as it faces the challenges of modernity and postmodernity. The author is also editing and translating the critical edition of the lectures, which are being published concurrently by Oxford University Press.
The term religion is indispensable to the subject matter of both religious studies and theology. Many approaches attempt a reductive, essentialist, functionalist, or other type of unifying definition, but these approaches tend to rest on various, often controversial sets of presuppositions. Indeed, it seems impossible to overcome the vast plurality of understandings of religion as the academic fields that deal with religion splinter and proliferate, thereby inhibiting the rational treatment of a very important dimension of modern society. The present (...) volume undertakes an intense interdisciplinary examination of a seminal modern text that religious scholars agree helped spawn religious studies and modern theology as we know it, namely Schleiermacher's Reden über die Religion, which lays out the most important and controversial themes under discussion by theologians and religious studies scholars: first, the significance of emotion for the understanding of religion; second, the role of imagination and religious utterances in religious belief; third, the importance of religion for the social world; and fourth, the political implications of religion. (shrink)
In over 200 separately-authored entries, this reference surveys both the historical and contemporary relations between religion and society. A selection of the world's leading scholars from varying disciplines and denominations cover all aspects of philosophy, theology, ethics, politics, economics and government, providing a brief definition of each term, a description of the principal ideas behind it, its history, development and contemporary relevance, and a detailed bibliography giving the major sources in the field. The Dictionary is prefaced by an introduction (...) outlining the scope and diversity of coverage. * Synthesizes theology, social thought, social philosophy and ethics * Prestigious editors and an international team of Consulting Editors * Selected entries include: AIDS, Domestic Violence, Madness, Prophecy, Terrorism, Women's Ordination, Fundamentalist Liberation Theology, Surrogacy. (shrink)
This book demonstrates the originality and coherence of Jonathan Edwards' philosophical theology using his dynamic reconception of reality as the interpretive key. The author argues that what underlies Edwards' writings is a radical shift from the traditional Western metaphysics of substance and form to a new conception of the world as a network of dispositions: active and abiding principles that possess reality apart from their manifestations in actions and events. Edwards' dispositional ontology enables him to restate the Augustinian-Calvinist tradition (...) in theology in a strikingly modern philosophical framework. A prime example of Edwards' innovative reconstruction in philosophical theology is his conception of God as both eternal actuality and a disposition to repeat that actuality within God and also through creation. This view is a compelling alternative to the traditional Western doctrine of God as changeless actuality, on the one hand, and the recent process theologians' excessive stress on God's involvement in change, on the other. Edwards' achievement was that he saw dynamic movement as essential to God's own life without compromising the traditional Christian tenets of God's prior actuality and transcendence. The author of this volume also explicates the way in which Edwards' dynamic reconception of reality informs his theories of imagination, aesthetic perception, the knowledge of God, and the meaning of history. This expanded edition includes a new preface and a new appendix titled "Jonathan Edwards on Nature.". (shrink)
This book argues that a basic problem in thinking about understanding, temporality, and selfhood is due to “imitative” modes of thought found in much traditional Western philosophy and theology. Given this, the book examines the complex role that “image” and “imitation” play in understanding and its world of meaning, the import of language and narrative for configuring human temporality, and the existence of self. The author’s contention is that when critically understood, mimesis, with its roots in performative enactment, holds (...) resources for reconsidering these basic dimensions of human life beyond imitative paradigms of thought. (shrink)
This collection of essays, written between 1975 and 1987, covers topics including the doctrine of analogy, the Trinity, theological realism, the problims of evil and suffering, ecclesiology, and the so-called theistic proofs. The earlier writings relect the author's training as a philosopher in the Anglo-Aamerican analytic tradition. Later essays have a more explicitly theological focus, and they attempt to deal with and move beyond the tradition through hermeneutics, and literary and social theory. This collection thus addresses a wider list of (...) topics than is usual in works of philsophical theology, and is unique in its use of interdisciplinary methods and approaches. (shrink)
Emmanuel Levinas was a significant contributor to the field of philosophy, phenomenology and religion. A key interpreter of Husserl, he stressed the importance of attitudes to other people in any philosophical system. For Levinas, to be a subject is to take responsibility for others as well as yourself. He regarded ethics as the foundation for all other philosophy, but later admitted it could also be the foundation for theology. Michael Purcell outlines the basic themes of Levinas' thought and the (...) ways in which they might be deployed in fundamental and practical theology, and the study of the phenomenon of religion. (shrink)
This article presents the political theology of Martin Luther King. I analyze the notion of political theology, King's argumentation in favour of non-violence strategy in politics and reconstruct a standard model of non-violence action. Finally, I discuss some philosophical and political controversies arising around passive resistance.
. The present malaise of religionâand of theology, its intellectual formulationâin Western society is analyzed, with some personal references, especially with respect to its history in the United Kingdom and the United States. The need for a more open theology that takes account of scientific perspectives is urged. An indication of the understandings of God and of God’s relation to the world which result from an exploration starting from scientific perspectives is expounded together with their fruitful relation to (...) some traditional themes. The implications of this for the future of theology are suggested, not least in relation to the new phase, beginning in 2003, of the development of the Zygon Center for Religion and Science. In a concluding reflection the hope is expressed that the shared global experience and perspectives generated by the sciences might form a more common and acceptable starting point than hitherto for the exploration towards God of the seekers of many religious traditions and of none. (shrink)
This short work shows how systematic theology is itself a philosophical enterprise. After analyzing the nature of philosophical enquiry and its relation to systematic theology, and after explaining how theology requires that we talk about God, Vincent BrU;mmer illustrates how philosophical analysis can help in dealing with various conceptual problems involved in the fundamental Christian claim that God is a personal being with whom we may live in a personal relationship.
THE BOOK TAKES A LARGE NUMBER OF ISSUES WITHIN CHRISTIAN THEOLOGY (E.G., ATTRIBUTES OF GOD, ATONEMENT, SACRAMENTS, ESCHATOLOGY); ALLOWS TWO THEOLOGIANS (MOSTLY MODERN) TO PRESENT OPPOSED VIEWS ON THE SUBJECT IN QUESTION; AND THEN ILLUSTRATES HOW THE DEBATE HAS BEEN INFLUENCED BY, OR COULD BE DEEPENED BY, REFERENCE TO CONTEMPORARY CONTINENTAL PHILOSOPHY OF VARIOUS SORTS. THE PHILOSOPHERS DISCUSSED INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING: ADORNO, BARTHES, BENJAMIN, BLOCH, DELEUZE, DERRIDA, FOUCAULT, GADAMER, HEGEL, HEIDEGGER, KIERKEGAARD, LEVI-STRAUSS, LEVINAS, MARECHAL, RICOEUR. THOUGH THE HISTORICAL BACKGROUND (...) IS EXPLAINED, THE STRESS IS VERY MUCH ON ASSESSMENT OF THE ARGUMENTS INVOLVED. (shrink)
What is the relationship between religious studies and theology? Do both have a place within the university? This paper will argue that no clear distinction can be drawn between religious studies and theology on the level of the methods they employ. Each is multidisciplinary and each is able to address questions of religious truth. They can be distinguished only by asking `What is the question which each is attempting to answer?'. Religious studies addresses the question of the meaning (...) and truth of any religion. Theology is interested in the question of the meaning and truth of one particular faith. By adopting the language of one particular faith, the theologian is able to explore particular religious questions in some depth. (shrink)
Can theology go through Kant? -- Knowledge and cognition in Kant's theoretical philosophy -- Faith and cognition in Kant's philosophy of religion -- Kant's moral grounds for theology -- Kant's poetic grounds for theology -- Kant's ontological grounds for theology -- Rational religious faith and Kantian theology -- Concluding comments.
Ford has developed the relationship between theology and each of these other spheres, but this is the first volume to bring together a complete and well-rounded account of theology's interaction with all its conversation partners. An innovative book about the shape of theology in reaction to its relationship with the Church, with theologians, with other religions, and with the university Written by David Ford, recognized internationally as one of the most creative of contemporary theologians Considers how (...) class='Hi'>theology shapes other areas of life via its conversations in the public sphere and with non-faith communities Views theology as both a way of thinking and a way of living, and considers how this lived character cannot be entirely grasped through reason alone The first volume to bring together a complete and well-rounded account of theology’s interaction with all its conversation partners. (shrink)
Karl Rahner is one of the great theologians of the twentieth century, known for his systematic, foundationalist approach. This bold and original book explores the relationship between his theology and his philosophy, and argues for the possibility of a nonfoundationalist reading of Rahner. Karen Kilby calls into question both the admiration of Rahner's disciples for the overarching unity of his though, and the too easy dismissals of critics who object to his "flawed philosophical starting point" or to his supposedly (...) modern and liberal appeal to experience. Through a lucid and critical exposition of key texts including Spirit in the World and Hearer of the Word , and of themes such as the Vorgriff auf esse , the supernatural existential and the anonymous Christian, Karen Kilby reaffirms Rahner's significance for modern theology and offers a clear exposition of his thought. (shrink)
Although metaphysics as a discipline can hardly be separated from Aristotle and his works, the questions it raises were certainly known to authors even before the reception of Aristotle in the thirteenth century. Even without the explicit use of this term the twelfth century manifested a strong interest in metaphysical questions under the guise of «natural philosophy» or «divine science», leading M.-D. Chenu to coin the expression of a twelfth century «éveil métaphysique». In their commentaries on Boethius and under the (...) influence of Neoplatonism, twelfth century authors not only anticipate essential elements of thirteenth century metaphysics, they also make an original contribution to the history of metaphysics by attempting to integrate the theory of first principles, philosophical theology and ontology. This volume presents and examines the contributions of the twelfth century to metaphysics made by selected Jewish, Christian and Muslim authors of the Iberian Peninsula and Francia. -/- Contributors include Matthias Lutz-Bachmann (Frankfurt am Main), Andreas Speer (Würzburg), Charles Burnett (London), Alexander Fidora (Frankfurt am Main), Thomas Ricklin (Neuchâtel), Yossef Schwartz (Jerusalem), Josep Udina (Barcelona), Jack C. Marler (St. Louis/USA), Gillian R. Evans (Cambridge), Andreas Niederberger (Frankfurt am Main) and Françoise Hudry (Paris). (shrink)
The article is dedicated to the politico-theological critique of Judaism from the position of Christianity. It shows the affinity of Marx’s early critique of liberal state and of Hannah Arendt’s criticism of formal legalistic thinking in the contemporary judicial treatment of Nazism (and of similar international political crimes). Marx’s critique of nation-state finds its unlikely continuation in Arendt’s critique of international law. The politico-theological argument is explicit in Marx and implicit in Arendt, but both develop the Hegelian criticism of liberal (...) state which shows its reliance on the abstract law, on the one hand, and on the egotistic abstract individual, on the other. The theological undercurrent of the argument is both sign of its limitations, and of the subsisting relevance of the politico-theological framework, even in the similarly novel circumstances of the twentieth century. It is only within and through the theological critique and critique of theology that these issues would stand a chance of resolution. (shrink)
Which Trinity? : the doctrine of the Trinity -- In contemporary philosophical theology -- Whose monotheism? : Jesus and his Abba -- Doctrine and analysis -- "Whoever raised Jesus from the dead" : Robert Jenson on the identity of the Triune God -- Moltmann's perichoresis : either too much or not enough -- "Eternal functional subordination" : considering a recent evangelical proposal -- Holy love and divine aseity in the theology of John Zizioulas -- Moving forward : theses (...) on the future of Trinitarian theology. (shrink)
Introduction: Context and hisotry -- Introducing the dailogue partners : Torrance and Feyerabend -- Torrance : theology cohabiting with natural science -- Torrance's proposal : a new objectivity -- Feyerabend's challenge : 'knowledge without foundations' -- Two excuses -- Coherence and language -- From foundations to spirals -- Conclusion.
Islam, one of the worlds great faiths, was born as a result of the revelation of the Quran to the Prophet Muhammad (c. 570-632) in Arabia. A proper understanding of the Islamic present depends on an accurate knowledge of the way in which Islamic thought developed from medieval times onwards. For instance, Islam evolved a sophisticated theology and set of philosophical systems of its own, which owed something to the impact of Greek thought, but became uniquely Islamic because of (...) the vital presence within that faith of the Quran. Furthermore, Islam soon came into contact with Greek philosophy and science, and a translation movement into Arabic began. The roles of Kason and Revelation, and the primacy that was to be given to one or the other, came to the fore. Problems which had also vexed Christianity such as anthropomorphism, free will and predestination provided intellectual stimulation for Islamic thinkers, while the mystical impulse, articulated in Islamic Sufism, imbued the writings of several of the theologians and philosophers considered in these volumes. Taken together, all of these issues constitute a golden period of Islamic debate and intellectual inquiry, and the articles collected in this fascinating set reflect that Islamic dynamic. (shrink)
This book cuts new ground in bringing together traditional Christian theological perspectives on truth and reality with a contemporary philosophical view of the place of language in both divine and wordly reality. Patterson seeks to reconcile the requirements that Christian theology should both take account of postmodern insights concerning the inextricability of language and world as well as taking God's truth to be absolute for all reality. Yet it is not simply about theological language and truth as such. Instead (...) Patterson asks: where does language fit in divine and human reality? Patterson's discussion straddles realist, liberal-revisionist and postliberal theological schools, and critiques their various positions before going on to utilise selectively their insights to develop and apply a theological model of 'language-ridden' reality. This model affirms that worldly reality has a radical dependence on God. Finally, the book explores the theological and ethical implications of the model it proposes. (shrink)
Proclus' Elements of Theology is a concise summa of the Neoplatonic system in its fully developed form; and for the student of late Greek thought, second in importance only to the Enneads of Plotinus. Dodds has provided a critical text based on a personal examination of some forty manuscripts, together with an English translation and a philosophical and linguistic commentary. This second edition includes an Appendix of Addenda et corrigenda and is still widely regarded and respected as the definitive (...) edition of the text today. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: Preface; Introduction: what is remythologizing?; Part I. 'God' in Scripture and Theology: 1. Biblical representation (Vorstellung): divine communicative action and passion; 2. Theological conceptualization (Begriff): varieties of theism and panentheism; 3. The new kenotic-perichoretic relational ontotheology: some 'classical' concerns; Part II. Communicative Theism and the Triune God: 4. God's being is in communicating; 5. God in three persons: the one who lights and lives in love; Part III. God and World: Authorial Action and Interaction: 6. (...) Divine author and human hero in dialogical relation; 7. Divine communicative sovereignty and human freedom: the hero talks back; 8. Impassible passion? Suffering, emotions, and the crucified God; 9. Impassible compassion? From divine pathos to divine patience; Conclusion: always remythologizing? Answering to the Holy author in our midst; Select bibliography; Index of scriptural references; General index. (shrink)
This book gives an introduction to the various theological perspectives regarding revelation. It includes a survey of the views of liberal, evangelical, Calvinist, and Charismatic theologians. The author presents his succinct view in the last chapter.
This collection is an exploration of the historical course and nature of early Christian theological traditions. The contributors reconsider classic themes and texts in the light of the existing traditions of interpretation. They offer critiques of early Christian ideas and texts and they consider the structure and origins of standard modern readings of these ideas and texts. Christian Origins provides a fresh and often ground-breaking analysis of the origins of Christian thought and offers a comprehensive and synchronic overview of the (...) development and influence of that thought. (shrink)
This is the outline: Introduction : le praticien d’une science-philosophie; Épiphénoménisme retourné et subjectivité délocalisée; Dieu est-il jamais inféré par la science ?; La question du panthéisme; Le pilotage axiologique et la parabole mécaniste; L'unité domaniale comme ce qui reste en dehors de la science.
These two remarkable books, both published in 2010, share many themes but differ in significant ways, and each is very much worth reading and pondering. Oord’s The Nature of Love concentrates primarily on conceptual and theological themes relating to the very nature of love itself and what influential theologians have had to say about love. His Defining Love focuses on how the social and physical sciences impact our understanding of human and divine love. Both books presuppose and express many themes (...) that are prominent in process theology such as: freedom is universally present (by degrees) in all creatures, especially us; predestination is abhorrent and untenable; God exists necessarily and everlastingly but not .. (shrink)
Introduction : points of departure -- A genealogy of the Christian colonial mindset : ex nihilo from disputed beginnings to orthodox origins -- Ex nihilo and the origin of an empire -- Ex nihilo, erasure and discovery? -- The cogito, ex nihilo, and the legacy of John Locke -- The creation ex nihilo of terra nullius lands : omnipotent nations and the logic of global-colonization -- From epistemologies of domination to grounded thinking -- Opening words about God onto creatio continua (...) -- Creatio continua "all the way down": a post-colonial, planetary understanding of continuing creation -- Conclusion : a brief thought after. (shrink)
Building on recent research exposing Hegel’s debt to esoteric Christianity (both Gnostic and Hermetic traditions), the aim of this paper is to show how Hegel and Schelling resolve an ambiguity in Boehme’s theology of evil in opposing ways. Jacob Boehme’s notion of the individuation of God through the overcoming ofopposition is the central paradigm for both Hegel’s and Schelling’s understanding of the role of evil in the life of God. Boehme remains ambiguous on the question of the modality of (...) evil: Is it necessary to God’s self-unfolding, or is it rather an anarchic act that God permits in the interest of preserving the autonomy of finite freedom? If the former, Boehme becomes much more closely aligned to Gnosticism by identifying finitude with evil. This identification is shown to be exactly Hegel’s solution to the ambiguity, one Hegel opts for in the interest of maintaining the absolute rationality of the system. Hermeticism opposes Gnosticism on this point: for the Hermeticist, finitude / material being / nature is not evil but ‘of God,’ the means of his individuation. This conflict in interpretations of Boehmeilluminates an often overlooked but essential difference between Gnosticism and Hermeticism. Schelling remains faithful to the Hermetic tradition by sacrificing system for the sake of preserving the contingency of evil, and disidentifying finitude and evil. (shrink)
This study is the first modern account of the development of philosophy during the Carolingian Renaissance. In the late eighth century, Dr Marenbon argues, theologians were led by their enthusiasm for logic to pose themselves truly philosophical questions. The central themes of ninth-century philosophy - essence, the Aristotelian Categories, the problem of Universals - were to preoccupy thinkers throughout the Middle Ages. The earliest period of medieval philosophy was thus a formative one. This work is based on a fresh study (...) of the manuscript sources. The thoughts of scholars such as Alcuin, Candidus, Fredegisus, Ratramnus of Corbie, John Scottus Eriugena and Heiric of Auxerre is examined in detail and compared with their sources; and a wide variety of evidence is used to throw light on the milieu in which these thinkers flourished. Full critical editions of an important body of early medieval philosophical material, much of it never before published, are included. (shrink)
My subject is the role of philosophical and social idealism in liberal theology, and I will argue that both are tremendously significant in the history of liberal theology and both are problematic, adaptable, and still important. There is no such thing as a vital or relevant progressive theology that does not speak with idealistic conviction, however problematic that may be. I am currently writing a large book on this topic, so some compression is necessary today.The book begins, (...) as it must, with Kant, Hegel, and Schleiermacher, and it ranges over the German, British, and American traditions of liberal theology. But today I'm going to make most of my case through the least familiar part of this story, the British .. (shrink)
As an eminent practical theologian, Don S. Browning watched religious belief and practice interact with the larger culture for a long time, especially in regard to issues of personal and family well-being. As Alexander Campbell Professor Emeritus of Ethics and the Social Sciences at the Divinity School of the University of Chicago, he also lived in the midst of currents and controversies in academic philosophy, theology, and other disciplines. As a result, his work is distinguished by its alertness to (...) a variety of endeavors including medicine and the sciences.From the vantage point of his years of work and thought, Browning perceived that certain critical interactions, social and intellectual, are currently .. (shrink)
In recent years, multidisciplinary study has become all the rage in academic circles. Scholars have been going all out for interdisciplinarity, not only in research programs, but pedagogically in the classroom, and structurally in higher education curricula. Fewer and fewer cautionary voices are being heeded or even heard in this conversation. In this essay, I advocate a mediating position on this issue that has emerged from reflecting on my own professional work with interdisciplinary scholarship. That work includes research, scholarship, and (...) teaching in the fields of theology, religion and science, and religion and literature, as well as ten years of editorial experience with the American Journal of Theology and .. (shrink)
This important new study of theological method comes at the culmination of the author's distinguished career as both a scholar and creative thinker in philosophy and theology. It makes an important, groundbreaking and programmatic contribution to contemporary thinking about theological method. It derives its creativity in no small measure by grounding theological method in the American pragmatic tradition: most notably in the philosophies of Charles Sanders Peirce, the founder and guiding genius of American pragmatic philosophy; John Dewey, the articulate (...) proponent of pragmatic instrumentalism; and George Herbert Mead, the founder of social psychology.Its roots in the pragmatic tradition endow this theory of .. (shrink)
In the current dialogue of “science and religion,” it is widely assumed that the thoughts of Darwinists and that of atheists overlap. However, Jerry Fodor, a full-fledged atheist, recently announced a war against Darwinism with his atheistic campaign. Prima facie, this “civil war” might offer a chance for theists: If Fodor is right, Darwinistic atheism will lose the cover of Darwinism and become less tenable. This paper provides a more pessimistic evaluation of the situation by explaining the following: Fodor’s criticism (...) of adaptationism (as the backbone of Darwinism), viz., his refutation of any counterfactual-supporting laws on the macro-evolutionary level, implies that a law-maker is dispensable on this level. This will either encourage skepticism against the omniscience (at least that concerning the future of macro-evolution) of the Creator, or render the notion of God less appealing. (shrink)
This essay is part of a larger project that explores the role of Kantian and post-Kantian idealism in founding modern theology. More specifically, it investigates the impact of Kantian and post-Kantian idealism in creating what came to be called "liberal" theology in Germany and "modernist" theology in Great Britain. My descriptive argument is implied in this description, which folds together with my normative argument: Modern religious thought originated with idealistic convictions about the spiritual ground and unifying reality (...) of freedom, and there is no vital progressive theology that does not speak with idealistic conviction, notwithstanding the ironies and problems of doing so.Liberal theology was born in .. (shrink)
The first part of this paper presents the mystery of Eucharist as the symbol or sacrament of, and hence as identical with, the central mystery of Christian faith: the paschal mystery of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. It also situates Rahner’s theology of Eucharist within the larger context of his theology as a whole, particularly his Christology. The humanity of Jesus as the real symbol or sacrament of the Logos provides the prime analogate for understanding Eucharist (...) as sacrament, and the two-fold movement of Christology as both descending and ascending provides the basic structure of sacramental activity as embodying both the divine offer of grace and human response to it. The second part considers Rahner’s contribution to specific problems in Eucharistic theology: real presence, the idea of transubstantiation, sacramental causality and institution by Jesus.The third and final part looks to the still unfinished agenda of Karl Rahner’s theology of Eucharist. He describes the task facing theology in the future as that of transposing theoretical beliefs into practical imperatives, “so that the theological as such becomes a principle of action.” For the Eucharist this means seeing Eucharist primarily in the context of the reign of God that was the center of the preaching and ministry of Jesus rather than only in the context of the church. More specifically, this means seeing the church’s Eucharist in the world within the larger context of the liturgy of the world. The liturgy of the world celebrates the ongoing transformation of the secular realm by the power of the Spirit in its movement towards its consummation in the final coming of God’s reign. (shrink)
This paper takes the work of Hans Urs Von Balthasar as a starting point and context for a philosophical recovery of beauty. Balthasar labored to recover a theological aesthetics within contemporary theology. However, his suspicion of modern philosophy with its turn to the subject left him unable to articulate the proper philosophical foundations for a modern recovery of beauty. He acclaimed the achievement of Aquinas but did not move beyond him. Therefore,the paper presents an argument for a transposed philosophy (...) of Aquinas through the thought of Bernard Lonergan. One that can properly ground a theological aesthetics because it reckons with the philosophers of doubt, and allows for the incorporation of other cultural notions of beauty that Balthasar admits are lacking in his own aesthetics. (shrink)
Monica A. Coleman achieves remarkable rigor in bringing together in one volume her long-standing interests in process philosophy and theology, womanist theology and ethics, African diaspora studies, West African religions, and African American women’s literature. Making a way out of No Way (2008) is a tour de force in contemporary African American constructive theology and especially in womanist discourse on the religious experience(s) of African American women. Coleman insists on understanding black women’s religious experience through the lens (...) of their complex subjectivity, which is irreducible to singularity or totality. As typically found in academic womanist theology, Coleman does not begin her theology with .. (shrink)
The question that arises in this article is whether we can find elements of phenomenology in Bernard Lonergan’s Trinitarian theology.With help of other Lonergan scholars, I have discovered that modern thinking plays an important role in the theology and philosophy ofthis Jesuit author. Moreover, the terminology of modern philosophy coexists with the terminology of classical and especially Tomisticthought. This article is interested in the elements that Lonergan takes from the modern philosophy and emphasizes the centrality ofHusserlian phenomenology among (...) the other modern authors used by Lonergan. Following the research of the Jesuit thinker, I speakabout two parallel realities coexisting in his Trinitarian theology. Lonergan tries to realize their synthesis, but at the same time healso recognizes their distinctiveness. The most relevant result of this coexistence is obtained through the replacement of the metaphysical differentiation between the level of substance and the level of the three Persons, so that, instead of having the elements of classical theology, Lonergan predicates at the same time that God subsists as well as the Trinitarian Persons subsist. Through this assertion he emphasizes the identity between God’s existence and the existence of the three divine Persons, and eliminates the classical differentiation that might be closer to the danger of subordinating the three Persons to the one God. (shrink)
Following an analysis of the historical contexts from which liberation theology emerged, ana anlysis of Gutiérrez’s version of this theology is provided with a discussion of its prospects for future development.
This paper highlights certain features of the metamorphosis that the concept “the end of the world” has undergone from its origin in early Christian thought to the present day. This concept has, in recent decades, become increasingly prominent within Western European Lutheran and Roman Catholic theology. This paperdemonstrates that the notion of the end of the world popularized by Jürgen Moltmann and Karl Rahner, despite the traditional, biblical language in which it is couched, has more affinity with the philosophical (...) concept “the end of history” developed by Hegel than it has with the ideas common in early Christianity. (shrink)
Orthodox Christian theology gives philosophy the same role it played in the Church of the first half-millennium. This article distinguishes among nine senses of philosophy and four senses of theology in order to highlight the characteristic features of Orthodox Christian theology’s use of philosophy and philosophical reasoning. It shows why, given the metaphysics and epistemology of Orthodox Christian theology (e.g., God is recognized as fully transcendent, such thatthere is no analogia entis between created and Uncreated Being, (...) with the result that the experience of the encounter with God can only be recounted apophatically) and its sociology of knowledge (e.g., theology in the strict sense occurs primarily in monasteries, not in the academy), philosophy is regarded as not able to contribute to the development of old doctrines or the fashioning of new doctrines, but only to the clarification of doctrinal statements. As a consequence, Orthodox Christian theology has been committed to severely confining philosophy’s role in theology. (shrink)
This paper focuses on Karl Rahner’s understanding of the relationship between history and the church’s doctrine. It locates doctrine within Rahner’s view of the church as the sacrament of Jesus Christ in history and the development of doctrine as a response to issues raised by the church’s historical existence. Rahner’s theology of the priesthood is used as a concrete example of his understanding of doctrine and its development. The paper explores also the continuing value of Rahner’s ideas for the (...) contemporary church. (shrink)
Transcendental theology is, as a return to the subject, an attempt to take experience seriously, because transcendental method explores the full range of the conditions of the possibility of experience. For Rahner, transcendental theology is theological anthropology. This study explores his method also in relation to transcendental experience of God.
At the end of his life, Rahner pointed to the need for a fully systematic theology that brings out the inner relationship between Jesus Christ and the universe put before us by the natural sciences. In this article, it is argued that Rahner had long been pursuing this theological agenda. His various contributions on this topic arebrought together and discussed within a framework of six systematic elements that are found in his work: self-bestowal as the meaning and purpose of (...) creation; self-transcendence as the way of divine action; resurrection as the beginning of the transformation of the universe; God as Absolute Future; human action as finally significant; hope as trust in God in the midst of perplexity. This synopsis leads to some critical reflections on Rahner’s achievement. The paper was presented at the 2005 meeting of the Karl Rahner Society. (shrink)
This essay follows Richard Schaeffler in identifying Kant’s moral philosophy as a possible framework for a Catholic theology of hope. Whereas Ernst Bloch criticized Kant for failing to sever his theory of hope from its religious ties, Jürgen Moltmann criticizes Kant for failing to appreciate the true meaning of Christian hope for the kingdom of God. The present essay argues that Moltmann neglects, as much as Bloch did, the significance of God to Kant’s account of the kingdom. A Catholic (...)theology of hope would have to lie somewhere in-between the atheist utopianism of Bloch and the evangelical certainty of Moltmann, and that is precisely what Kant’s concept of hope does. (shrink)
Hans Urs von Balthasar calls for a revival of what he sees as the original relationship between human holiness and Christian theology. He suggests that modern theologians should imitate their patristic forebears to the extent that they combine holy living with an objective stance corresponding to the intellectual rigor proper to theology. The article summarizes von Balthasar’s analysis of the development and current state of what he portrays as the problem of separation between theology and human holiness, (...) considers the role of philosophy in shaping the relationship between them, and indicates the way forward for theology, given a Balthasarian analysis. Finally, the article considers how far von Balthasar’s approach can alleviate the crisis which theology is currently facing. (shrink)
My paper proceeds in three stages: 1) the traditional relationship between philosophy and theology; 2) how the “foundationalist” issue affects this debate; 3) some final reflections. This essay, along with the previous one by Jack Bonsor, was originally presented to the “Theology in the Seminary Context” seminar at the Catholic Theological Society of America convention in June, 1995.
The present study asks the question whether Karl Rahner’s treatment of biological evolution holds merit for the dialogue between Catholic theology on the one hand and evolutionary biology on the other. Central to this evaluation will be an emphasis on two core tenets of modern evolutionary biology, namely emergence and the continuity of the evolutionary process. While the former bears relevance for our understanding of how life and anthropologically important phenomena such as “mind” and “consciousness” came to be, the (...) latter plays a crucial role in how we view our existence within the earth’s fluid and changing biosphere. It comes to the conclusion that Rahner’s concept of active self-transcendence recovers the notion of biological evolution as an on-going process where indeed something new emerges, and therefore offers an extremely helpful tool in the interdisciplinary conversation. However, this essay challenges Rahner’s understanding of the directedness of the evolutionary process toward the human being as well as his view that in us nature comes to self-consciousness for the first time and suggests alternatives. (shrink)
Fr. Sala attempts in this article to provide readers and students of Lonergan with a clear, precise, and condensed presentation of his conception of method in theology in today’s context. He does this by sketching the most important stages in the evolution of Lonergan’s thought. The core of this presentation is the analysis of the “human subject in its subjectivity.” Lonergan deals primarily not with the content of theological science but with the operations theologians perform in constructing theology. (...) He endeavors to clarify this subjectivity in all its dimensions. Having given us an analysis of Lonergan’s Verbum articles, Sala goes on to present Lonergan’s Insight under three headings: knowledge, objectivity, and reality. This done, he proceeds to summarize Method in Theology under these headings: the religious dimension of the subject, the structure of theological method, the specific theological principle of a method in theology, and the authentic subject as the foundation for theological reflection.The article is a masterly presentation of a vast area of research and a good introduction to Lonergan’s works.This article appeared in Theologie und Philosophie 63 (1988) 34-59 and was titled: “B. Lonergans Methode der Theologie: Ein Theologe hinterfugt seinen eigenen Verstand.” Von Giovanni B. Sala, S.J. (shrink)