Browsing Older Doctoral Theses by Authors
Towards a Christian PhilosophyOlthuis, James H.; McCormick, Thomas Wilson; Institute for Christian Studies (Institute for Christian Studies, 2012)The relationship between philosophy and Christianity has, of course, a long history, as do the discussions of that relationship. My own position is not dissimilar to that of many of the early Church Fathers, though of course that position must be elaborated differently for various historical and personal reasons, and hopefully enriched by attention to the history of Western philosophy. As with all such relations, one's understanding of this relation has a lot to do with one's understanding of the terms involved. To promote the possibility of "Christian philosophy" is also to comment on that "and" which might be understood to relate two otherwise distinct and irreconcilable terms. In the end I claim this "and" must be understood as that "love" which defines philosophy as the "love of wisdom" (and finally, the wisdom of love), and does so in terms which (almost) merge-with the surprising assistance of such thinkers as Martin Heidegger, Jacques Derrida, and Paul Ricoeur-with those of the Church Fathers cited. On the one hand, I intend nothing but the historical, orthodox, and catholic understanding of Christianity, especially with regard to the central figure of Jesus the Christ, the Trinitarian God whom He embodies, represents, and reveals, and the Scriptures given as The Bible. On the other hand, I present the specifically philosophical pertinence of this unique Person as such emerges from the texts of the "philosophers" considered, and in a manner which I claim does not force the issue by reading into their texts what is not there. Attending to a (Christian) philosophical reflection on (Christian) philosophy also offers elaborations of inherited doctrines, both Christian and philosophical, including a way to read and think unique to the outcome. Such is the adventure of this current work.