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61. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Vance G. Morgan Cognitive Science, Naturalism, and Divine Prototypes
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A new vision of the human being is emerging from the cognitive sciences. A number of philosophers have recently argued that traditional, rule-oriented models of the moral life are unsuitable for this vision. They prefer an ethical naturalism that, among other things, eliminates from moral theory any element of transcendence or reference to the divine. In this paper, I argue that any model of the human being is incomplete unless it includes reference to the spiritual aspects of human nature, then sketch an outline of one possible new image of God implied by cognitive science research.
62. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Jack Bonsor Teaching Rahner: Why and How?
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This article describes how its author has used Karl Rahner’s thought to engage seminarians and college students in the practice of theology.
63. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Nicholas Okrent Spinoza on the Essence, Mutability and Power of God
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This paper argues that Spinoza makes a distinction between the constitutive essence of God (the totality of His attributes) and the essence of God per se (His power and causal efficacy). Using this distinction, I explain how Spinoza can conceive of God as being both an immutable simple unity and a subject for constantly changing modes. Spinoza believes that God qua Natura Naturans is immutable, while God qua Natura Naturata is not. With this point established, Curley’s claim that Spinozistic modes are causally dependent on but not properties of God loses much of its attraction. In conclusion, I suggest how God’s essence is related to His attributes and His modes.
64. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
L. S. B. MacCoull The Anaximander Saying in its Sixth-century (C. E.) Context
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The famous early fragment (B1 D-K) of Anaximander, Greek thinker of the sixth century B.C.E., was transmitted to us by Byzantine Alexandrian authors of the sixth century C.E.: the pagan Simplicius in his commentary on Aristotle’s Physics, and the Monophysite Christian to whose earlier Physics commentary Simplicius was replying, John Philoponus. When these commentators were writing, the Mediterranean world was polarized by the Monophysite-Chalcedonian theological controversy. First Philoponus adduced some of Anaximander’s words in his argument for a single principle of the universe, in keeping with his own theological position. Then Simplicius gave a fuller form of the text, reproving Philoponus for what he considered “uncultured” Christian views. This transmission tells us something about Byzantine theological attitudes as well as preserving archaic philosophical formulations.
65. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Robert Masson Introducing the Annual Rahner Papers
66. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Steven G. Smith Three Religious Attitudes
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Attitude is an important criterion and cause of religiousness, though it is commonly mishandled in religious reflection by (1) skewing the anthropologically central variable of attitude toward “feeling,” on the side of affect, or toward “disposition,” on the side of will, and (2) obscuring different basic forms and validities of religious attitude by insisting on one overly narrow or misleadingly rounded-out conception of devoutness (most often, “faith”). This paper develops a more adequate conception of attitude in general and of the generic religious attitude of devoutness as branching into three principal, sometimes divergent religious attitudes: faith, oriented to the realizable; piety, oriented to the realized; and submission, oriented to realizing.
67. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
Carmichael Peters On Teaching Karl Rahner to Undergraduates
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In teaching courses on Karl Rahner to undergraduates, I have come to appreciate the importance of finding a starting point with which students readily connect. After much thought, I begin these courses with an extended consideration of the human person. This starting point has the advantage not only of being Rahner’s but also of being one which seems attractive to students. I have found little evidence that students have to be convinced about the importance of self-concern. I am careful to emphasize, however, that in Rahner’s understanding of the dynamism of conversio and reditio this starting point never allows for any form of narcissistic subjectivism. Starting with the concreteness of our lives naturally leads to other considerations which also seem attractive to students: the burden of self-responsibility, the sense of awe and wonder, the need for hope. These are among some of the concerns which I try to address when teaching Rahner.
68. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 1
William V. Dych Karl Rahner’s Theology of Eucharist
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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.
69. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Wioleta Polinska Faith and Reason in John Locke
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Against the prevailing interpretations that perceive John Locke as either a rationalist or as contradictory on the issue of faith and reason, this paper contends that Locke consistently argued for a compatibility of faith and reason. From his perspective, faith and reason are not two distinct “side by side entities, but instead they permeate each other’s realm in a fashion that does not violate the integrity of either one of them. Particular attention will be given to Locke’s distinctions between knowledge and faith and their respective probabilities. Locke’s position will be placed within the seventeenth-century theory of probability that followed the Aristotelian principle that different subject matters require different proofs, and a reasonable person should be satisfied with proofs appropriate for each subject.
70. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Phillip J. Rossi Editor’s Page
71. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Neil Ormerod “It Is Easy to See”: The Footnotes of John Milbank
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This article analyzes a single paragraph in John Milbank’s The Word Made Strange that criticizes Bernard Lonergan’s understanding of Thomas Aquinas’ theology of the trinitarian processions. It demonstrates that the criticisms are unsubstantiated by the texts referenced in the footnote citations and are thus, in all probability, baseless. In doing so, it calls into question the level of argumentation adopted in Milank’s works.
72. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
David Coffey Some Resources for Students of La nouvelle théologie
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There follow four documents that I hope will be found useful by students of la nouvelle théologie, the theological movement that flourished in France around 1950 and that in various ways prepared the way for the Second Vatican Council. The first is my translation of the Conclusion of Henri de Lubac’s Surnaturel: Études historiques (Paris: Aubier, 1946), pp. 483-94. This excerpt was arguably the main place in which he expounded his theology of the relation of nature and grace. The second document is my translation of an article titled “Ein Weg zur Bestimmung des Verhältnisses von Natur und Gnade,” by an anonymous writer known only as “D,” who purported to convey de Lubac’s theology on this matter in systematic style, as distinct from de Lubac’s own more rhetorical approach. This article appeared in Orientierung, vol. 14 (1950), pp. 138-41. Karl Rahner replied to it in the same issue in the immediately succeeding pages, 141-45, and in slightly amended form this reply constitutes his important essay “Concerning the Relationship between Nature and Grace,” in vol. 1 of his Theological Investigations (Baltimore: Helicon Press, 1961), pp. 297-317, translator Cornelius Ernst. My amendments to the Ernst translation of this essay form the third document of the present group. The final document is my identification of D. Without further ado let us proceed to the documents.
73. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Giacomo Rinaldi A Hegelian Critique of Derrida’s Deconstructionism
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This article offers a general “immanent” critique of Derrida’s Deconstructionism, whose positive outcome is an argument for the continuing viability of a Hegel-oriented idealistic metaphysics. Derrida’s thought is construed as an unspokenly skeptical and nihilistic development of Heidegger’s existential ontology and of the sensu latiori “structuralist” trend of contemporary human sciences. The main difficulties pointed out hinge on (§ 1) the relationship deconstructionism establishes between thought and language, speech and writing, and phonetic and non-phonetic writing, (§ 2) its paradoxical concept of “transcendental writing” as the “origin” of empirical writing and of the “trace” as more “original” than original reality; and, finally, (§ 3) its specification of the alleged “radical other” to metaphysical thought as writing, difference, and literature.
74. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
William V. Dych Transposing Orthodoxy into Orthopraxis: The Importance of Practical Theology and its Implications for Christology, Soteriology and Ecclesiology
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Since the Second Vatican Council (1962-65), particularly its Pastoral Constitution on the Church and the Modern World, many Catholic theologians, including J. B. Metz, Karl Rahner, and Edward Schillebeeckx, have taken note of the need to see the practical implications of our theoretical doctrines. Taking its cue from a remark of Karl Rahner (1970) that the theological as such must be a principle of action, this article studies the implications of this for Christology, soteriology, and ecclesiology. The Christological implications are rooted in the long overdue recovery of the faith and hope of Jesus himself as the basis of the church’s faith in Jesus. The soteriological implications are rooted in recovering Jesus’ proclamation of the reign of God as the center of Christian soteriology. Finally, the ecclesiological implications are rooted in seeing the church as existing not for itself, but for the sake of the ongoing proclamation and realization of God’s reign in the present.
75. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
Thomas G. Rosario, Jr., Norris Clarke The Thomism of Norris Clarke: A Conversation with Fr. Norris Clarke
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William Norris Clarke, S.J., one of the leading Thomist scholars in the United States, came to the Philippines recently and delivered a series of lectures in the Ateneo de Manila University and the University of Santo Tomas on various philosophical topics inspired by the thought of St. Thomas. Fr. Clarke is now a Professor Emeritus of Philosophy in Fordham University. He was co-founder and editor (l961-85) of the International Philosophical Quarterly and is the author of some 60 articles, plus the following books: The Philosophical Approach to God, The Universe as Journey, Person and Being, Explorations in Metaphysics: Being—God—Person, and The One and the Many: A Contemporary Thomistic Metaphysics (Fall, 2000).He continues to fulfill his mission of propagating the thoughts of St. Thomas—-the “creative retrieval of St. Thomas,” as he puts it—-in and out of the U.S.An brief excerpt from this interview was originally published in Budhi: A Journal of Ideas and Culture1/3, 1997.
76. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 11 > Issue: 2
William Lane Craig Temporal Becoming and the Direction of Time
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The impression is frequently given that the static description of the 4-dimensional world given by a tenseless theory of time adequately accounts for the world and that a tensed theory of time has nothing to offer. In fact, the tenseless theory of time leaves us incapable of specifying the direction of time, whereas a tensed theory of time enables us to do so. Thus, the tensed theory enjoys a considerable advantage over the tenseless view.
77. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Richard Lennan Rahner’s Theology of the Priesthood and the Development of Doctrine
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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.
78. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Yves Congar Loving Openness toward Every Truth: A Letter from Thomas Aquinas to Karl Rahner
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From “Die Offenheit lieben gegenüber jeglicher Wahrheit. Brief des Thomas von Aquino an Karl Rahner,” Mut zur Tugend. Über die Fähigkeit, menschlicher zu leben, Karl Rahner and Bernhard Welte, eds. (Herder: Freiburg, 1979), 124-133. Author in French, Yves Congar; translator into German, Ulrich Schütz; translator from German into English, Thomas O’Meara.
79. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Mary E. Hines Rahner on Development of Doctrine: How Relevant Is Rahner Today?
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This paper explores the continuing relevance of Karl Rahner’s work on development of doctrine to a church within a world marked by an emerging postmodern consciousness. It focuses primarily on three elements of development as Rahner understands it, theological discussion, the influence of the Spirit and the role of church authority. The discussion of a possible definition of Mary as co-redemptrix and the controversy over the ordination of women are cited as concrete examples of issues of development facing the church today. Rahner’s increasing awareness of the context of irreducible plurality that marks the world-church of today and tomorrow led him to the increasing conviction in the later works that the Spirit is leading the church to a deepening understanding of the central mysteries of faith rather than to a further proliferation of defined dogmas. In the later works especially, he encouraged an attitude of open discussion that reflects the confidence that the Spirit is with the whole church as it struggles to express its faith in ever changing contexts. The paper concludes that Rahner’s understanding of the complex balance of elements involved in authentic doctrinal development continues to offer valuable insight to today’s discussions.
80. Philosophy and Theology: Volume > 12 > Issue: 1
Anthony J. Godzieba The Meanings of Fides et Ratio: Patterns, Strategies, and a Prediction
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This paper proposes a wider framework for the diagnostic and evaluative readings of Fides et Ratio. Each commentator has provided an exit from the impasse of the encyclical’s rhetoric of affirmation and denial in the form of a double reading of the text. In a wider framework, John Paul II holds up Antonio Rosmini among those whose works he considers paradigmatic for the fruitful relation between faith and reason. This displays a period of a prolonged struggle between an Augustinian and a Thomist style of theology which finds expression in a Christ-versus-culture approach in Catholic theology. The reading of Fides et Ratio reveal something of a “third way” in their affirmative readings of the encyclical.