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Ask a Theologian II

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Plotinus, May 9, 2008.

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  1. Agent327

    Agent327 Observer

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    I find any reasoning arriving at a conclusion that this is the best possible world extraordinary and I don't think I'm the only one, e.g. the success of Voltaire's Candide.

    Not following this: if two people - of all the people in the world - are the two tallest persons, then they share the attribute of being the tallest person in the world. Saying that they aren't (or don't) does not conform with reality. And again, if Peter is "the only man in the world, and Paul [is], the only man in the world", that is still possible if this person's name is Peter Paul of Paul Peter. But indeed. this being mere examples. it's no big deal. (This is what I meant with bringing up examples: I rather see a problem with these examples than with what they're supposed to be exemplifying. One might think of a better example or dispense with them.)

    Well, philosophers - and scientists - seem prone to inventing new words. In this case, I gather it to be a hybrid of coexistent/coexistence combined with possible/possibility.

    Indeed, but Plotinus seems rather keen of the concept of God in the 'traditional' sense. I agree that there are quite a few people around who believe in God, but do not agree with Leibniz' conclusion - nor with the 'traditional' attributes of God. Only in the eyes of 'the church' does that make them blasphemous heretics. That would appear to be a rather theocratic, not philosophical approach. Obviously, for Leibniz it was a necessary part of his definition, as it is part of the reasoning behind this being the best of all possible worlds. Within that strict definition that may be true, but outside it it just plain doesn't make sense.
     
  2. Plotinus

    Plotinus Philosopher Administrator

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    I don't think I have, since I'm not really very interested in the Bible, but he's obviously an important figure.

    I'll have to to ask my editor when I meet her later today!

    I don't know at all, but I shall try to find out. I expect that it didn't have a problem with it at all - the Catholic Church today is of course opposed to capital punishment but seems to have been very comfortable with it in the Middle Ages!

    The article isn't exactly the most rigorous or comprehending one I've ever seen so it's probably presenting Ehrman's claims in a more sensationalist way than he does himself. After all, there aren't even nineteen books of the New Testament that claim the authorship of any named figure, so there could hardly be that many "forgeries". Miles Teg's breakdown makes sense to me.

    If you want to turn it the other way around, I think there are only seven books of the New Testament which are generally accepted as written by the person who is traditionally supposed to have written them: Romans, 1 Cor, 2 Cor, 1 Thess, Philippians, Galatians, and Philemon (the undisputed Pauline epistles). So if the claim attributed to Ehrman actually means he thinks that nineteen out of twenty-seven are not written by the traditional authors, he's got an extra one that he's being traditionalist about.

    Of course one can drive home a point, both to emphasise it and and to interest people. But it's possible to do that without exaggeration and misrepresentation. And it's possible to do it without intellectual dishonesty. If somebody is incapable of making a point without resorting to these things, then either (a) the point they are making really is very dull and of no interest to anyone, or (b) they are lazy and cannot be bothered to do it in a respectable way, or (c) they simply lack the brainpower to do it in a respectable way.

    See, what you're doing here is a perfect example. I said that satire shouldn't be part of rational argument because it is fundamentally irrational: it distorts and trades honesty for laughs. You are acting as though I said that all public discourse has to be dry and dull. I didn't say that. I merely said that satire is not an appropriate vehicle for it. That's just the sort of thing Dawkins does: ignore what your opponents actually say, exaggerate their position, present a strawman version of it, and get all worked up at how outrageous it is. I suppose that makes for an entertaining display, at least.
     
  3. Miles Teg

    Miles Teg Nuclear Powered Mentat

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    If I had to make a guess, probably Ephesians, maybe Revelations, James, or Jude. The first is an eternal battleground between those saying their are too many similarities to Paull's unchallenged work, especially Colossians, and those who say that it uses to many different ideas and divergent vocabulary to be the same person's writing. The second is the only of the various Johannine books that actually gives his name. Probably not John the Apostle, but he never said he was that John. James and Jude are in the tricky position of being the only book by their traditional author. There's not much to compare them to.
     
  4. Plotinus

    Plotinus Philosopher Administrator

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    I think Jude is unlikely to be by the real Jude; it is simply too late, usually considered one of the very latest books of the New Testament to be written (beaten only by 2 Peter, which is partly based on it). James actually has a fairly decent chance of being authentic, if only because there's no particular reason to doubt that it's by James - as you say, it is very hard to tell since there are no other writings attributed to him. It is an interesting book because it's so very Jewish - in fact apart from a couple of references to Jesus it could pass as fairly standard Jewish wisdom literature of the time.

    I don't think Ephesians is very disputed, at least among scholars. There is overwhelming consensus that it is not by Paul. It simply develops Pauline ideas and language too drastically to be authentic. However, its author was certainly very familiar with Paul, unlike the author of the Pastorals. Also, Colossians is not unchallenged - in fact I should think that more scholars regard it as inauthentic than not. Colossians is difficult because it's like Ephesians, but less so. It develops Pauline ideas and language to some degree, but not as much as Ephesians does, so it's less clear whether this is Paul taking his own ideas further or someone else building on his work. Of course, if Colossians is inauthentic then that would prove the inauthenticity of Ephesians outright, since the latter is based to some extent on the former.

    I agree about Revelation; since John of Patmos is otherwise unknown he doesn't seem to be a Great Name whom the author is imitating, so why doubt that it's the author's real name? It's worth adding that apocalypses of this sort were generally anonymous or written in the name of some quasi-legendary figure of the distant past - it is very unusual for the author to appeal to his own name as authoritative in some way, as the author of Revelation seems to do. This in itself is valuable information about the status of "prophets" of this kind in Christian Asia Minor at the end of the first century CE.

    A quick search of Ehrman's new book on his publisher's site reveals that he thinks that the "authentic" books of the New Testament are indeed the seven undisputed Pauline letters and Revelation. Of course, calling the rest "forgeries" would be absurd for the reasons already mentioned, but I'm sure that's just over-enthusiastic press officers and journalists who do that and Ehrman himself wouldn't.
     
  5. Elrohir

    Elrohir RELATIONAL VALORIZATION

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    I know. :blush: That was all I could find on short notice. If I find a better explanation, I'll be sure to post it.

    Even so, I don't think it's fair to label the others as "forgeries" - a forgery is something that is intentionally ascribed to someone besides the actual author. I don't think that's accurate - Hebrews, for instance, is anonymous. It was traditionally thought that Paul wrote it, even though it's not a signed letter. Even if we accept that Hebrews was not written by Paul (as the vast majority of modern scholars do) labeling it a forgery is unfair, as forgery implies deliberate intent to deceive, and it's not the author's fault that other people later thought he was Paul. (Presumably, if he intended to try to trick people into thinking Hebrews was written by Paul, he would have signed it so.)

    My only question is whether that's actually what he believes, or if a reporter took the relatively uninteresting "these books probably aren't by the people most people think they are" and turned it into "The Bible is chock full of forgeries! News at 11!" I'm inclined to think it's the latter. Thanks for the answer. :)
     
  6. Erik Mesoy

    Erik Mesoy Core Tester / Intern

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    On a related note, I seem to recall something about a "forgery of humility" argument that some of the books in the NT were by people who didn't think themselves worthy to have their name on it, so they put the name of someone more important on it for that reason. Is this even vaguely credible?
     
  7. Plotinus

    Plotinus Philosopher Administrator

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    Right, and I entirely agree with you. No respectable Biblical scholar would describe most of the New Testament as "forgeries" - partly because (as you rightly say) most of these books are anonymous anyway and make no claim of authorship, whether true or false, and partly because the "forgery" category does not exactly map onto ancient pseudonymity anyway. Ancient authors wrote under other people's names for many reasons, not all of which match our conception of "forgery". So the use of this word is surely down to the reporter, not to the scholar - kind of like this.

    That sounds to me like rather a pious way of putting it, but it's hard to be sure. On the one hand, anyone who thinks that they've got something to say that they want other people to read isn't being particularly humble, so the explanation seems rather self-contradictory. On the other, writing under someone else's name could be done for a variety of relatively high-minded reasons. As I said, people in antiquity wrote pseudonymously for various reasons. One was simply to get their work read as widely as possible. Why sign it "Non-entitius" when you could put "Aristotle" at the end and guarantee a wide circulation? Such works are often obviously inauthentic, showing little attempt to imitate the style of the author, such as the pseudo-Aristotelian treatise De mundo. At other times, authors might try to write "a summary of the thought of so-and-so, in his style", so the idea there seems to be a bit more respectable. Ephesians may fall into this category. Other authors might have wanted to fill in a gap in the author's work, writing "what so-and-so would have written if he'd got around to thinking about this topic". The letters of Plato might fall into this category (although scholars don't know whether they are authentic or not, which indicates that if they are inauthentic the author did a brilliant job of imitating Plato). And others might write purely as rhetorical exercises. The letters between St Paul and Seneca are surely absurd enough to fall into this category rather than representing any genuine desire to deceive - although they fooled as astute a scholar as Jerome, so you never can tell.

    Now which of these we would call "forgeries" and which show humility or other noble traits on the part of the authors in question is hard to determine. What always strikes me as odd about ancient pseudonymity is that it was so prevalent and common, and yet people seem almost always to have been taken in by it. It seems barely credible, for example, that people in the sixth century should all have thought, unanimously, that the group of works supposedly by Dionysius the Areopagite, which were suddenly "discovered" by Severus of Antioch having never been known by any earlier authors, used highly technical contemporary Neoplatonic language, and even contained a quotation from Ignatius of Antioch (who lived half a century after the real Dionysius), were genuine, but they did (and continued to do so until the Renaissance). This is especially so when we remember that some ancient scholars did develop critical tools similar to those of modern scholars, such as comparing writing styles or tendencies of thought, and used them to argue that certain texts were not genuine. Dionysius of Alexandria is an example (he argued, on textual grounds, that Revelation was not by the author of the Johannine literature) and I believe Theodore of Mopsuestia is another.
     
  8. RulerOfDaPeople

    RulerOfDaPeople Chieftain

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    Here's my question: Is a marriage really a marriage (legitimate, thus enacting all biblical laws regarding divorce onto that couple) if a couple had never gotten married in a church? Is a marriage certificate from a quick trip to the court house or Las Vegas legitimate in the eyes of God? Or Biblicly/spiritually are those people not considered ever being married?
     
  9. Ayatollah So

    Ayatollah So the spoof'll set you free

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    You've got it backwards. Satire can have a place before the explicit rational argument begins. Satire can have cognitive content and usually does. (And so can caricature, even.) That's why it can suggest an argument, which ball the audience can then run with - or kick away, if it's no good.
     
  10. Plotinus

    Plotinus Philosopher Administrator

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    According to whom? You can't ask a question like that without context. Marriage means different things to different people, as the debates about gay marriage indicate. Whose view about marriage are you asking about here?

    I can tell you, at least, that Christians typically understood marriage as a primarily civil and legal matter until the Middle Ages, when the notion arose that it was a sacrament and therefore the business of the church. Even then, the "marriage" ceremony was typically regarded as a recognition of a pre-existing state, not as the creation of a new state. People in the Middle Ages normally just started living together and got their "marriage" blessed by the church some time later (if at all), sometimes en masse (everyone in the area who was in such a state got "married" in one big ceremony by the bishop). The idea that the ecclesiastical marriage service brought about a married state was associated with the idea of marriage as a sacrament (i.e. something that, by God's grace, does something) and had become central by the time of the Council of Trent. So by then, marriage had become an almost entirely religious affair and not a civil one at all, although of course it still fell within the purview of canon law (i.e. it was a legal affair, not simply a liturgical one, but was governed by ecclesiastical law rather than civil law). On that understanding I suppose a marriage conducted outside the church would not count. But even then that still leaves room for interpretation: would a marriage conducted in a non-Catholic church count? That would depend on one's attitude to other churches.

    Moreover, post-Vatican II the Catholic Church has tended to view marriage not as a sort of contract, governed by ecclesiastical law, but as a sort of covenant, modelled after God's covenant with his people. So it retains its sacramental character but is conceived in a more personal and less legalistic way. I would imagine that this creates more conceptual space for recognising marriage outside the church, because even a marriage that does not conform to canon law could still meet the conditions of a covenant. But then one might still have varying views of what those conditions are.

    That may be true, but then the satire is still distinct from the argument. Moreover, because satire does not state its criticism explicitly but leaves it for the viewer to infer, it can be understood in many different ways, which is inimical to rational debate. If you have only satire then you don't have reasoned debate. As I say, its nature is to distort, and while the intention of the distortion may be to draw attention to a real feature in the (undistorted) target, distortion is a form of misrepresentation. And misrepresentation is obviously quite opposed to rational debate, given that one of the fundamental requirements of rational debate is that everyone agree on what they're talking about and what they mean by it.
     
  11. Ayatollah So

    Ayatollah So the spoof'll set you free

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    Fiction is fictional, yet one can learn a lot about the human condition from fiction. You're dangerously close to painting a picture of reason as a purely explicit deductive and semantical exercise, with no role for emotion or creativity. It doesn't ring true to me, and it doesn't fit with what neuropsychologists and psychologically informed philosophers are saying.
     
  12. RulerOfDaPeople

    RulerOfDaPeople Chieftain

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    Well you give an educational review of the history about it, but it still leaves me curious regarded my question so I'll reply to the above question in hopes to clarify my own. Let's use my friend as an example. We'll say he's a protestant christian but his wife may not be associated with any religion, but also would not consider herself an athiest. (I guess the technicle term is "Heathen"?) Info of that nature may be irrelevent to my question and it may not, but I figure the more info there is the more it will help the hypothosis...

    They go to the coarthouse without any of their family or friends knowing and get a quick marriage certificate (via application) by a coarthouse judge one quick spontaneous afternoon, with no family or friends witnessing it. In the eyes of God, are they married?

    I've read somewhere that in order for the marriage to be legitimate it has to be witnessed by 2 or 3 people, is that correct?

    My real curiosty here relates to what the bible says about divorce. Because in order for a couple to be restricted from splitting up (IE what Jesus said in Matt. 19:9 and Matt. 5:32), they would have to first be legitimately married, correct? I mean if they are not married according the way scriptures defign marriage, then they can't be divorced the way scriptures defign and restrict divorce because they were never really officially married in the first place.

    What say a Theologian about this? :)

    Edit: Also, would it make a difference if they had kids together or not? (We'll say they did not.)
     
  13. burleyman

    burleyman Chieftain

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  14. RulerOfDaPeople

    RulerOfDaPeople Chieftain

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    Dang, where did our Theologian go?
     
  15. Plotinus

    Plotinus Philosopher Administrator

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    No, she just doesn't have a religion. "Heathen" is equivalent to "pagan", which is a religion (or group of religions).

    The problem again here is that "Protestant Christian" is still very vague. I'm sure that there is as wide a range of views on this among Protestants as there would be among Christians in general.

    Basically, I don't know what most churches would say to this. I am sure that some would say that marriage is a matter of intent, so if they intended to become married then they are. And I'm equally sure that others would say that a marriage that doesn't involve any religious aspects is not a marriage in God's eyes. I can't give any more specifics on this as I simply don't know and it's surprisingly hard to find out. The Catholic Encyclopaedia, for example, has a lot about the theology of matrimony but doesn't say anything about non-religious weddings. My father is a priest in the Church of England so I asked him what the church's line is on this, and he said that he doesn't think it has one, or if it does, he doesn't know what it is. The church regards civil marriages as valid and binding, but this is in a moral sort of sense rather than a theological one. It's not clear if it regards them as different in any significant sense from marriages performed in an ecclesiastical context.

    That sounds to me like a civil requirement - presumably the laws on this might vary from country to country. From a theological point of view, a sacrament can be performed without witnesses. Peter Damian's Letter 18 tackles this issue, arguing that a priest may perform a church service by himself and even address the apparently non-existent congregation, on the grounds that all Christians are present wherever a single Christian is, because of the unity of the church. So I should think that, theologically speaking, there would be no need for witnesses - at least if one accepts this view of marriage.

    This is an interesting argument; the problem is, of course, that the Bible doesn't define marriage, so in the absence of any scriptural definition of marriage, it's hard to tell under precisely what circumstances its strictures on divorce apply (quite apart from the fact that those strictures are inconsistent anyway). As I say, if one regards marriage from a purely moral point of view, which seems to be at least how Anglicans would tend to, then while a church wedding may be preferable to a civil ceremony, the end result is (morally) much the same, in that the couple have made vows to each other which they are morally obliged to keep (except under X circumstances, or whatever). To suppose that the church-married couple are in a different state from the registry-office-married couple must be to suppose that a church wedding confers some status upon the marriage itself that is lacking from a non-church wedding. But I'm not actually sure if anyone thinks that this is the case; and if they are, I don't know what they think that status is.

    That's just a long-winded way of saying I don't know. Sorry!

    I'm going to guess that it might make a difference to the moral issues mentioned above (e.g. if there are children then that might add force to the imperative to stay together simply for their sake) but surely not to any theological issues, whatever they might be.

    Those aren't sufficient conditions for an explanation being reasonable. If the proposed explanation is intrinsically incredibly unlikely, for example, or clashes with other things we know, then that must at the very least drastically reduce its chances of being true and therefore its reasonableness as an explanation for the phenomenon in question. In this case, if we have good reason to think that a purposeful creator is very unlikely to exist, then I would say it's not a reasonable explanation for anything, even if it meets the criteria you mention.

    Well, let's break this down into its constituent bits. It seems to me that there are a number of facts which are being conflated here.

    (1) The fact that the universe is such that it can produce life.

    We can reasonably ask why the universe is such that it can produce life. That is the same thing as asking in virtue of what it can produce life. It is in virtue of the following fact:

    (2) The fact that the universe has certain physical laws, constants, and other features.

    An analogy: (1) Stevie Ray Vaughan is such that he can melt your face with his guitar playing. Why? Because (2) Stevie Ray Vaughan has certain technical and artistic knowledge and abilities that allow him to do that.

    Now (1) stands in need of an explanation. The explanation is (2). So does (2) stand in need of an explanation? Well, perhaps, and perhaps not. As I've said, for all we know, the aforementioned laws and constants are the only ones that any existent universe possibly can have. Of course if that's true then we might ask why. But any answer to that would surely requr

    But why should it require an explanation? This isn't an event or thing within the universe that we're talking about here. Things like that do, as a rule, require explanations, and they can in theory generally be given. But why should this apply to features of the universe? It's not just arbitrary to cavil at the claim that it does. You say yourself:

    All right, I concede that this is a different sort of argument from the Paley one. But what you say here just confirms what I just said. The values of the basic physical constants aren't like events, organisms, or other features within the universe (its "furniture", if you like) that fit into the normal pattern of physical cause and effect that we can perceive and study scientifically. They are features of the universe which were there from the start and are built into its fabric, presumably. So why on earth suppose that the ways in which we think about the furniture of the universe apply to features of the universe?

    A problem here is that he seems to be shifting between "facts" and "events". Perhaps what van Inwagen says here may be true of facts about events. But we're not talking about facts like that - we're talking about facts about permanent states of the universe, and I just don't see the force of this assertion (which is all that this passage is) when applied to those.

    So now we're back to appealing to what is "elegant" or "satisfactory" or "neat"? Are we back in the seventeenth century again? This isn't very philosophical and is actually just arbitrary. Bostrom's last assertion there is particularly bald. Why is a "neater" theory to be preferred? What is a "neater" theory anyway? It is worth pointing out that even within the philosophy of science there are considerable controversies over the problem of merely stating what makes one theory "neater" (or "more parsimonious") than another - let alone over why such theories are to be preferred to others. And that's just within science! When you start applying these criteria to issues that go beyond science, such as the existence of God, you are going so far out on a limb that you're no longer in sight of the trunk. Why should such criteria be applicable to such matters? Just because they appeal to us more? What sort of a criterion is that?

    That's not because the result is unlikely, though, is it? It's only because it's patterned. Now what is the pattern that, in the case of LPCU, we are seeking to explain? Surely there is no pattern, because the universe is a sample of one, at least as far as our observations go. If we could observe many universes, and LPCU held in all of them, then perhaps we could say that there's a pattern to explain. But when there is only one, what's the pattern?

    It seems to me that this is where there is some kind of false analogy at the heart of this sort of argument. The analogy is between LPCU and patterns that demand an explanation. But there's no pattern involved in LPCU and, accordingly, no reason to suppose that it demands an explanation.

    I believe I'm right in saying that there is some evidence for this, which is why some physicists have proposed it, to explain certain behaviours of entities at the quantum level. From what I understand, which isn't much, it's not a very impressive explanation. But still, it's not entirely lacking in evidence.

    This argument does seem wrong-footed for the reason you give. However, a revised argument could state simply that while it is very improbable that all the constants should fall within the requisite range (and to be honest, I don't see why even that should be conceded - how can we possibly know that it's very improbable?) it is still possible. The question again is what we're trying to explain here. Is it (a) the fact that physical constant X has value Y (as opposed to some other value)? Or is it the more basic fact that (b) there is a physical constant X at all? Now, if (b) is true, then X has to have some value, and presumably Y is as good a value as any. It may be unlikely that it should happen to have Y (and that all the other constants should happen to have the values we'd approve of as well), but there you go. That still leaves (b) itself unexplained, of course. But then we're back to the question whether it needs any explanation. In fact, one could plausibly say that if there is a universe at all, there is going to be a constant X, with some value. So in that case, (b) would simply boil down to (c) there exists a physical universe. And I certainly don't know any good reason to suppose that that stands in need of an explanation.

    I agree that answers that conform to existing scientific consensus are to be preferred, for obvious reasons. But must one say that that consensus is wrong in order to hope that an answer of the kind you mention will one day be forthcoming? Surely one needs only accept that the existing scientific consensus is incomplete, and no-one would deny that.

    No problem. I think people are probably aware by now that I have no objection to long posts. If I gave the impression that I think these arguments not worth considering then I apologise - I think all arguments are worth considering; the question is how long they are worth considering. Ultimately it seems to me that any arguments of this kind do rest, fundamentally, upon the view that certain fundamental facts about the universe itself (and not simply about the furniture of the universe) require explanation, and that is a view that I can't see any reason to think must be true. That's why I don't have a whole lot of time for such arguments, because I think they rest upon an unproven assertion. But that doesn't mean we can't discuss them profitably.

    It often takes me a while to reply, especially if the questions are long or numerous or if I basically don't know the answer and am unsure how to proceed - also if I'm busy, which is most of the time.
     
  16. Eran of Arcadia

    Eran of Arcadia Stormin' Mormon Retired Moderator

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    The LDS view on civil/religious marriage is basically that any marriage between one man and one woman who were not already married to someone else, that is recognized by legitimate government authority, is valid as a marriage in the eyes of God. No distinction is made between one in a courthouse, and one in a church (although a distinction exists for most done in temples).
     
  17. Eretz Yisrael

    Eretz Yisrael Korean Conscript

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    Hello, Plotinus, I was wondering if you could recommend some good books on Chrsitian, Atheistic Existentialism (anything from Kierkegaard and Berdyaev would be fine) as well as some insightful analyses for both sides of arguments between Protestantism vs. Catholism.
     
  18. Plotinus

    Plotinus Philosopher Administrator

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    The big names in Christian existentialism are Rudolf Bultmann and Paul Tillich, so I think any investigation into that subject has to begin there.

    Bultmann:

    Fergusson, D. Rudolf Bultmann[/io] London: Continuum 1992 (basic introduction)

    Bultmann, R. Existence and Faith London: Hodder & Stoughton 1961 (collection of relatively readable short pieces)

    Tillich:

    Thomas, J. Tillich London: Continuum 2000 (basic introduction)

    Tillich, P. The Shaking of the Foundations London: SCM 1949 (collection of sermons, much more accessible than the later dogmatics)

    Another interesting representative of Christian existentialism is John Macquarrie, who is much less well known but quite under-rated, in my opinion.

    Macquarrie, J. The principles of Christian theology London: SCM 1966 (more readable than it sounds)

    As for Christian atheist existentialism I'm not so sure. While there is something sometimes called Christian atheism (although its adherents prefer the name "Christian humanism") it's not really associated with existentialism so much, at least as far as I can tell. Although Tillich might sometimes be classified as a sort of atheism, since he thinks that God is simply another name for Being itself, which makes God not really a thing at all (this is actually just a development of Thomism in more shocking language).

    I'm also not sure about the arguments between Protestantism and Catholicism, because thanks to the ecumenical movement such arguments don't really occur these days. Of course there are some Protestants, mainly conservantive evangelicals, who engage in polemics against Catholics, and I'm sure there are some Catholics who do the same, but this can't really be called an "argument" since neither side is engaging with the other - they are just writing for their own readers and often without any real knowledge of their antagonists. In fact, after the very initial flurry of the Reformation, most Protestant polemics has been directed at other Protestants, not at Catholics.

    That said, I'm sure that books on the subject exist, but I'm afraid I don't know of them.
     
  19. Loppan Torkel

    Loppan Torkel Chieftain

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    You say that the big names of Christian existentialism are Bultmann and Tillich plus Macquarrie.... are they good or just the best representatives?

    Have you read any of Kierkegaard's books? What's your opinion of his works?

    Since you didn't recommend any of his books, I'll go ahead and recommend Fear & Trembling. I just liked it on a personal level...
     
  20. Eretz Yisrael

    Eretz Yisrael Korean Conscript

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    Many thanks for the recommendations, especially the ones on John Macquarrie (never heard of him before, looked him up just now), but already read the books for Bultmann and Tillich. Also I meant to say Atheist Existentalism, not Christian Atheist Existentalism(was typo).:blush:
     
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