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Displaying: 1-12 of 12 documents


1. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
Vladimir de Beer The Cosmic Role of the Logos, as Conceived from Heraclitus until Eriugena
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In this article the cosmological and metaphysical dimensions of the Logos concept in the Hellenic and Patristic traditions are explored. Heraclitus initially depicted the logos as the ontological link between the One and the many, with the logos thus serving as the foundation of both rational discourse and natural law. This concept was elaborated and modified by a number of eminent Hellenic and Christian thinkers. Among them count Plato, Philo of Alexandria, the New Testament authors John and Paul, Plotinus, Athenagoras, Justin Martyr, Clement of Alexandria, Augustine of Hippo, Dionysius the Areopagite, Maximus the Confessor and John Scottus Eriugena.
2. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
Jean-Pierre Fortin Critical Theology, Committed Philosophy: Discovering Anew the Faith-Reason Dynamics with Origen of Alexandria and Augustine of Hippo
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This article analyzes the faith-reason relationship articulated in the works of two Church Fathers, Origen of Alexandria (185-254 CE) and Augustine of Hippo (354-430 CE). Within the perspective of Origen and Augustine, faith is rational and reason faithful. Faith does not hinder, but rather enhances the power of human understanding to decipher the truth. Faith is the only means by which human reason can come to know truth in Jesus Christ. Faith and reason are thus interrelated and mutually dependent. While faith empowers reason to fathom the divine mysteries, reason perfects faith, enabling responsible assent to truth.
3. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
Edward R. Moad Between Divine Simplicity and the Eternity of the World: Ghazali on the Necessity of the Necessary Existent in the Incoherence of the Philosophers
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In the Incoherence of the Philosophers, Abu Hamid al-Ghazali (1058-1111) leveled a critique against twenty propositions of the Muslim peripatetic philosophers, represented chiefly by al-Farabi (872-951) and Ibn Sina (980-1037). In the Fourth Discussion of this work, he rejects their claim to having proven the existence of God. The proof to which he objects is none other than the famous ‘argument from contingency.’ So why did the eminent theologian of Islamic orthodoxy reject an argument for God’s existence that ultimately became so historically influential? I will show that the real targets of Ghazali’s objection are the philosophers’ doctrine of the pre-eternity of the world, and their denial of divine attributes. These two issues are linked in such a way that, only if the philosophers’ argument regarding the divine essence is sound, would they be able to prove that He exists while holding to the doctrine of the world’s pre-eternity.
4. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
Cyril Orji Does Lonergan Know C. S. Peirce?
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This article revisits ideas of Charles Peirce, who wrote at the turn of the nineteenth century, and Bernard Lonergan, who wrote at the turn of the twentieth, with the purpose of connecting important dots in their thinking. The goal of this comparison is to show how the two ground metaphysics in the practices of the sciences and common sense. The article argues that the metaphysical framework the two scholars developed in opposition to nominalism can be used to overcome the reductionism that hinders modern efforts to think metaphysically as well to as promote fruitful dialogue between theology and philosophy.
5. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
Joshua R. Farris Substance Dualism and Theological Anthropology: A Theological Argument for a Simple View of Persons
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Currently, there remains an aversion for substance dualism in both philosophical and theological literature. However, there has been a renewed interest in substance dualism within philosophical literature. In the present article, I advance substance dualism as a viable position that persuasively accounts for the Scriptural and theological data within Christian thought. I make a specific argument in favor of a metaphysically simple substance. Along the way, I note the overlap between the philosophical and theological literature and suggest that a simple soul as substance is a metaphysical presupposition grounding the data.
6. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
Jessica M. Murdoch Contesting Foundations: Karl Rahner and Francis Schüssler Fiorenza's Nonfoundationalist Critique
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One particularly serious criticism of Karl Rahner’s fundamental theology on postmodern grounds has been articulated by Francis Schüssler Fiorenza. Specifically, Fiorenza criticizes the mystagogical or “maieutic” aspect of Rahner’s method, its alleged progression from implicit experience to explicit historical concretions. This characteristic, in Fiorenza’s estimation, legitimates those who level a claim of tautology against the transcendental method. Furthermore, Fiorenza argues that the maieutic character of Rahner’s transcendental method undercuts truly historical questions. The key problem with assessing Fiorenza’s critique of Rahner is primarily Fiorenza’s imprecision with his use of terms. Two questions in particular remain unresolved. First, which foundationalism is the supposed foundationalism present in Rahner’s method? Second, whose conception of hermeneutics is included under the rubric of “hermeneutics"? In this paper I argue that Rahner executes a truly hermeneutical theological method that escapes Fiorenza’s foundationalist critique.
7. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
John-Mark L. Miravalle The Trinity's Choice: Oppy, Bergson, and God's Decision to Create
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If God’s choice to create the universe is an unnecessary choice, then, Oppy argues, something contingent is ultimately at the origin of the universe, and as long as “brute contingency” is the basis for the universe’s existence, why bother with the additional postulate of a necessary being? Bergson’s work on free will, however, coupled with traditional trinitarian theology, suggests that it is more rationally satisfying, and certainly more in keeping with a viable principle of sufficient reason, to stop searching for causes/explanations at the free choice of the Christian God instead of at the universe itself.
8. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
Daniel R. Kern The Logic of Salvation in the Gospel of John
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I evaluate two claims; that (a) Jesus’s message as recorded in the gospels implies exclusivism with respect to salvation and that, correspondingly, (b) Christians should be exclusivists with respect to salvation. I evaluate these claims through a cataloguing and evaluation of the logical condition involved in each of the claims regarding conditions for salvation made by Jesus in the Gospel of John. As a result, I argue that (a) is false and that, correspondingly, so is (b).
9. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
Michael C. Hawley Newman’s Immanent Critique of Liberalism: A Philosophical Argument against Liberal Hubris
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John Henry Newman's theological arguments against the mixture of liberal philosophy and Christian religion have drawn a great deal of scholarly attention. Comparatively underappreciated is Newman's rebuttal of liberal ideas on the philosophical plane. In this line of argument, which runs parallel to his more purely theological critique, Newman uses some of liberalism's own foundational philosophical premises to undermine the conclusions put forth by the exponents of liberal religion. This immanent critique of liberal religion is important not merely because it shows Newman's capacity to engage his opponents on their own terms, but also because it provides an argument against liberal religion that merits consideration even for those who reject Newman's particular theological beliefs.
10. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
W. Chris Hackett Prayer, the Political Problem: Desire, Contemplation, and Models of God
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This essay attempts to describe some basic aspects of the political logic of religious belief by reference to some recent work of Sarah Coakley. It does so in two parts. First we examine two models of God, the model of “competition,” shared by pop atheism and religious fundamentalism, and the model of “cooperation,” as espoused by classical religious belief. As an explication of this latter model, in the second part we examine what I term the “doxological feminism” of Sarah Coakley as it appears in her recent major work God, Sexuality and the Self. Coakley’s specific insight concerns the intrinsic connection between her religious practice of contemplative prayer and her theoretical reflection on the nature of desire, which is interrogated by reference to the thought of Jean Daniélou.
11. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
Roberto Di Ceglie Alvin Plantinga and Thomas Aquinas on Theism and Christianity
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According to Plantinga, both the theistic and the Christian belief can be affirmed basically, namely, without proofs. Such a position—he tells us—traces back to Aquinas and Calvin. Here I intend to revisit Plantinga’s view of the relation between his own position (as inspired by Calvin) and Aquinas’s. I shall argue that the type of harmony the Reformed philosopher believes to have with Aquinas is only partially present, and that there is a different type of affinity between the two thinkers—though Plantinga is not aware of it. My aim is to show that Aquinas’s thought is really fruitful and inspiring to contemporary philosophy of religion, and that an outstanding thinker of our time such as Plantinga takes it as a reference point although does not entirely capture all its intellectual and spiritual depth.
12. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 27 > Issue: 1
James B. South Editor's Page
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