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Displaying: 1-10 of 20 documents


1. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 22 > Issue: 1/2
Caery A. Evangelist The Conceptual Content of Augustinian Illumination
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The prevailing interpretation of Augustine’s theory of divine illumination suggests that illumination provides the human mind with the content of our a priori concepts. While there is strong textual evidence to support this view, I contend it offers an incomplete picture of the work illumination does in Augustine’s epistemology. Based on an analysis of Augustine’s solution to the paradox of language acquisition in De magistro, I argue illumination also supplies the mind with the content of all our empirical concepts. In this text, Augustine calls our attention to the problem that learning the meaning of words by even the simplest of means—through direct acquaintance (i.e., by having an object pointed out to us and labeled with a name)—turns out to require a relatively sophisticated grasp of the word’s usage in the first place, one that depends on illumination to provide the content of all our universal concepts.
2. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 22 > Issue: 1/2
Anna Marmodoro, Jonathan Hill Peter Abelard’s Metaphysics of the Incarnation
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In this paper, we examine Abelard’s model of the incarnation and place it within the wider context of his views in metaphysics and logic. In particular, we consider whether Abelard has the resources to solve the major difficulties faced by the so-called “compositional models” of the incarnation, such as his own. These difficulties include: the requirement to account for Christ’s unity as a single person, despite being composed of two concrete particulars; the requirement to allow that Christ is identical with the pre-existent Son, despite the fact that the pre-existent Son is a (proper) part of the incarnate Christ; and finally the requirement to avoid Nestorianism, i.e., the position that Christ’s proper parts are persons in their own right. We argue that Abelard does have adequate solutions to these problems. In particular, we show that his theories of relations and predication can be put to use in defence of a compositional account of the incarnation.
3. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 22 > Issue: 1/2
Fred Ablondi, J. Aaron Simmons Heretics Everywhere: On the Continuing Relevance of Galileo to the Philosophy of Religion
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By carefully considering Galileo’s letters to Castelli and Christina, we argue that his position regarding the relationship between Scripture and science is not only of historical importance, but continues to stand as a perspective worth taking seriously in the context of contemporary philosophical debates. In particular, we contend that there are at least five areas of contemporary concern where Galileo’s arguments are especially relevant: (1) the supposed conflict between science and religion, (2) the status and stakes of evidence, (3) the question of biblical infallibility in light of scientific progress, (4) metaphorical approaches to biblical hermeneutics, and (5) possible dialogical constraints on public discourse.
4. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 22 > Issue: 1/2
Jonathan S. Marko Revisiting the Question: Is Anthony Collins the Author of the 1729 Dissertation on Liberty and Necessity?
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In this article I argue that the 1729 Dissertation on Liberty and Neces­sity should be attributed to Anthony Collins. This was the prevailing view until the publication of James O’Higgins’s 1970 biography of Collins. Since then, most have followed Collins’s modern-day biographer in denying that Collins penned the Dissertation. After reviewing O’Higgins’s six reasons for rejecting Collins as the author, I respond to the substantive issues in what follows. Part I is a historical positioning of the Clarke-Collins liberty-necessity debate where I discuss the debate’s context, Collins’s methods and disposition, and timeline issues pertinent to ascribing authorship of the Dissertation to Collins. Part II is a demonstration of the fittingness of the Dissertation as Collins’s response to the earlier debate regarding liberty and necessity he had with Samuel Clarke.
5. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 22 > Issue: 1/2
Marianne Moyaert The Struggle for Recognition: A Festive Perspective
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This article reflects on the struggle for recognition, in particular on the question of how to avoid people becoming battle-weary. Where do people find the strength to continue this struggle without lapsing into violence? These are questions which we derive from one of Paul Ricoeur’s latest publications Course of Recognition. Ricoeur claims that the only way to avoid the struggle for recognition degenerating into violent conflicts, is to place it in a horizon of hope—the hope that the struggle does not have the final word on interpersonal relations. In this article we take up Ricoeurs suggestion and elaborate it successively from a broad religious perspective and a Christian-Biblical perspective. This also allows us to develop new anthropological insights concerning the Struggle for Recognition.
6. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 22 > Issue: 1/2
Donald L. Wallenfang Sacramental Givenness: The Notion of Givenness in Husserl, Heidegger, and Marion, and Its Import for Interpreting the Phenomenality of the Eucharist
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The notion of givenness (Gegebenheit/donation) serves a key role in the phenomenological paradigms of Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger and Jean-Luc Marion, yet can this notion be applied directly or analogously within the context of sacramental theology? This essay demonstrates how the respective understandings of givenness, in the works of Husserl, Heidegger and Marion, can be employed as hermeneutical centers for exploring the paradoxical phenomenon of the sacrament, whereby the phenomenalities of the visible and the invisible coincide. The Eucharist is called upon as sacrament par excellence for examining the dynamic of givenness within the phenomenality of the sacrament. Tracing the notion of givenness as employed in the thinking of Husserl, Heidegger and Marion, respectively, the essay concludes with a consideration of the Eucharist as event, or ‘happening.’ In such manner does the concept of givenness shed new light on traditional metaphysical understandings of sacramentality.
7. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 22 > Issue: 1/2
Dennis Vanden Auweele Atheism, Radical Evil, and Kant
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This paper investigates the link between (radical) evil and the existence of God. Arguing with contemporary atheist thinkers, such as Richard Dawkins and Victor Stenger, I hold that one can take the existence of evil as a sign of the existence of God rather than its opposite. The work of Immanuel Kant, especially his thought on evil, is a fertile source to enliven this intuition. Kant implicitly seems to argue that because man is unable to overcome evil by himself, there is a need for God to bridge the gap. Si Deus est, unde malum? Si malum est, Deus est!
8. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 22 > Issue: 1/2
Christina M. Gschwandtner À Dieu or From the Logos? Emmanuel Lévinas and Jean-Luc Marion—Prophets of the Infinite
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This paper examines the extent to which certain aspects of the philosophies of Emmanuel Lévinas and Jean-Luc Marion are directed toward the divine, especially in regard to how they employ religious imagery or even explicitly biblical metaphors, namely those of the face of the neighbor, the glory of the Infinite, the response of the witness, and the breaking or sharing of bread. This will show important parallels and connections between their respective works, but it will also highlight where they diverge from each other. In respect to all four symbols or (biblical) images, I suggest that while it is indeed one (or even the primary) goal of Marion’s work to open phenomenological discourse to enable talk about the divine, Lévinas is instead interested in emptying biblical language of its theological import for purely philosophical (or ethical) purposes.
9. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 22 > Issue: 1/2
Brain T. Trainor The Divine Undergirding Of Human Knowing: Plato and Critical Realism
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Plato held that the Agathon (Being itself in its font) is the source or ‘common cause’ both of being(s) and of our understanding, both of the world (cosmos) and of our intellectual grasp thereof, both of the world beyond us (objectivity) that yet includes us and of the world of our inner thoughts (subjectivity) that yet stretches out to embrace the entire universe. This divine presupposition, found ‘philosophically’ in Plato and ‘religiously’ in Augustine’s doctrine of divine illumination, is that God is the common cause of us and our world, for both are held within the same divine/cosmic embrace, by the same Spirit operating within us and beyond us. This leads us to a ‘hand-in-its-glove’ or ‘mind-in-its-world’ proportionate realism that avoids the epistemological defects of Kant’s transcendental realism and Bhaskar’s critical realism. Finally, we should regard knowing by acquaintance as paradigmatic, as the fundamental form of knowing in terms of which the other types are best approached and understood. There is, I suggest, an important sense in which ‘all knowing is knowing in the biblical sense.’
10. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 22 > Issue: 1/2
Augustine Shutte Evolution and Emergence: A Paradigm Shift for Theology
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Since the time of Darwin the conception of evolution has developed beyond the boundaries of science to include philosophy and now theology in its scope. After noting the positive reception of the evolutionary idea by theologians even in Darwin’s time, the article traces its philosophical development from Hegel to the work of Karl Rahner. It then uses the philosophical anthropology developed by Rahner to reformulate the essentials of Christian faith (“Christology within an evolutionary view of the world”). in a way that is consonant with a scientific and secular world view. It is the author’s view that secularity—understood as in the recent work of Charles Taylor—is the result of an evolution in the sphere of culture and provides both a standard for truth in religion and a basis for dialogue between the religions of the world.