Lamennais: A Believer’s Revolutionary Politics, edited by Richard A Lebrun, offers English translations (by Lebrun and Jerry Ryan) of the most influential and controversial writings of Félicité de Lamennais, a French priest who began his career as a Traditionalist, became the founder of Liberal Catholicism in the early 1830s, and then left the Church after his ideas were condemned by Rome. Sylvain Milbach’s comprehensive Introduction and Annotations place these writings in the context of the author’s intellectual history and the political, religious, and intellectual situation in France in the first half of the 19th century.
Lamennais challenged traditional religious, political, and social thinking, leaving a fiercely debated reputation. The writings translated here allow 21st-century readers to judge him for themselves.
Dialogues of Maximus and Themistius is the first English translation of Pierre Bayle’s last book,
Entretiens de Maxime et de Thémiste, published posthumously in 1707. The two parts of the
Dialogues offer Bayle’s final responses to Jean Le Clerc and Isaac Jaquelot, who had accused Bayle of supporting atheism through his writings on the problem of evil. The
Dialogues defends Bayle’s thesis that the problem of evil cannot be solved by reason alone, but serves only to demonstrate the necessity of faith. In his Introduction to the
Dialogues, Michael W. Hickson provides detailed historical and philosophical background to the problem of evil in early modern philosophy, as well as summary and analysis of Bayle’s debates with Le Clerc and Jaquelot.
Divine Causality and Human Free Choice, R.J. Matava explains the idea of physical premotion defended by Domingo Báñez, whose position in the Controversy
de Auxiliis has been typically ignored in contemporary discussions of providence and freewill. Through a close engagement with untranslated primary texts, Matava shows Báñez’s relevance to recent debates about middle knowledge. Finding the mutual critiques of Báñez and Molina convincing, Matava argues that common presuppositions led both parties into an insoluble dilemma. However, Matava also challenges the informal consensus that Lonergan definitively resolved the controversy. Developing a position independently advanced by several recent scholars, Matava explains how the doctrine of creation entails a position that is more satisfactory both philosophically and as a reading of Aquinas.
Smilen Markov’s monograph on the metaphysical synthesis of John Damascene depicts a paradox ontological structure: the single man, whose ontological position is conditioned by non-being, participates in the life of the Origin of being. The term ‘historical interconnections’ denotes the basic elements of Damascene’s reception strategy through which he approaches the Holy Scripture and the tradition of the fathers. The structural transformation to which different epochs and cultural circles put Damascene’s concepts reveals regularity in understanding the intellectual scope of the Palestinian monk. The reception of his thought could serve as an indicator for the stable mental structures, ‘framing’ the epoch turning-points in European culture for at least six centuries.
Nicolaus Cusanus on Faith and the Intellect, K.M. Ziebart argues convincingly that Cusanus’ epistemology was a direct response to late-medieval debates over the relation between faith and reason—one which sought to resolve these debates by introducing a controversially strong integration of philosophy and theology.
By examining his works in the context of debates with his peers, Ziebart shows how and why Cusanus came to articulate a theory of knowledge in which faith is posited as inherent to the very structure of mind, as the
vis iudiciaria, or power of judgment.
This well-grounded study sheds new light on the Cusan philosophy and expands our view of a crucial, liminal period in European intellectual history.
Although little known today, the Utrecht physician and town councillor Lambert van Velthuysen (1622–1685) was a prolific Dutch seventeenth-century philosopher and a vociferous advocate of the new philosophies of Descartes and Hobbes.
The Letter on the Principles of Justness and Decency of 1651 constitutes both the first published reaction to Hobbes's political philosophy and the first attempt by a Dutch philosopher at using Hobbes to supply a ‘Cartesian’ moral philosophy. It is also a highly original work that seeks to define the nature of virtue and vice and to justify the magistrate's right to punish crimes. It will thus be of interest not only to historians of philosophy but to all those interested in the social and cultural history of the Dutch Golden Age.
Wittgenstein's religious thought is not well understood. And Wittgensteinian philosophy of religion is charged with fideism, religious non-realism, and even crypto-atheism. These charges, however, are borne of misunderstandings that are a result of the critics' being oblivious of apophatic theology. This book is intended to help clear some of those misunderstandings and neutralize the above-mentioned charges. It argues that Wittgenstein's religious thought shares kinship with the thought of apophaticists in Christendom such as the Pseudo-Dionysius and St. Thomas Aquinas. What appear to be fideism, non-realism, or crypto-atheism to the critics appear differently to those who see Wittgensteinian philosophy of religion from the apophaticists' point of view--Wittgenstein's religious point of view.
In this volume, fourteen philosophers of religion reflect on religious views of the good life. Some authors focus on positive religion and its specific religious representations of the good life, while others abstract from these and focus on philosophical religion and its conceptual articulations of the good life. The tension between positive religion and philosophical religion, between representation and concept, is itself also analyzed.
This volume is a result of the co-operation of the philosophers of religion who are senior members of the Netherlands School for Advanced Studies in Theology and Religion NOSTER.
Religion and the Good Life
Religion and the Good Life: Introduction - Marcel Sarot (Utrecht) and Wessel Stoker (Amsterdam)
PART I – THE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN REPRESENTATION AND CONCEPT
The Tension between Representation and Concept as a Challenge for Philosophy of Religion - Peter Jonkers (Utrecht)
Beyond Representation and Concept: The Language of Testimony - R.D.N. van Riessen (Kampen)
PART II – THE TENSION BETWEEN REPRESENTATION AND CONCEPT
Seduction and Guidance: Some Remarks on the Ambiguities of Reason and Reflective Thought in Connection with Religion and
the Good Life - W. Dupré (Nijmegen)
The Good Life is Historical - Ben Vedder (Nijmegen)
The Quality of Life: Comic Vision in Charles Dickens and Iris Murdoch - Henry Jansen (Amsterdam)
Narrative, Atonement, and the Christian Conception of the Good Life - Gijsbert van den Brink (Leyden)
Myths and the Good Life: Ricoeur’s Hermeneutical Approach to Myth - Wessel Stoker (Amsterdam)
Bhajans and their Symbols: Religious Hermeneutics of “the Good Life” - Hendrik M. Vroom (Amsterdam)
PART III – REPRESENTATIONS OF THE GOOD LIFE
Models of the Good Life - Marcel Sarot (Utrecht)
The Highest Good and the Kingdom of God in the Philosophy of Kant: A Moral Concept and a Religious Metaphor of the Good Life - Donald Loose (Tilburg-Rotterdam)
Jacques Derrida and Messianity - Victor Kal (Amsterdam)
Skepticism and the Meaning of Life - Michael Scott (Manchester)
Ultimate Happiness and the Love of God - Vincent Brümmer (Utrecht)
Human Being and the Natural Desire for God: Reflections on the Natural and the Supernatural - Eef Dekker (Utrecht)