Search Results

Toward a Renewed Understanding of Religious Life and its Public Accountability
Can religious faith be critical and remain recognizable as faith? Or is the idea of a critical faith a contradiction in terms? In this book an emerging new voice in the philosophy of religion argues in favor of critical faith. Playing on a double meaning of the word ‘critical’, the title of the book suggests that faith is not only a critical (crucial) component of human life, but also a component that can and should develop in a critical (intellectually vigilant) way. Taking John Locke’s reflections on the relationship between faith and reason as his point of departure, the author weaves his discussion around a wide array of intellectual figures and conversations. In addition to addressing important elements in the work of such historical figures as Aquinas and Locke, Kuipers also incorporates themes from recent discussions in the philosophy of science, feminist epistemology, philosophy of language, liberal theology, and critical theory. The book ends with a discussion of elements in Jurgen Habermas’s theory of communicative action, and offers a critical assessment of the merit of Habermas’s notion of critical rationality as a normative yardstick for the achievement of a critical faith.

Privatization, the liberal political strategy for handling religious differences, has been criticized for hegemonically privileging a secularist worldview and for refusing to provide full public scope to the plurality of religious traditions that exist in contemporary democratic societies. For these and other reasons, it is important to explore alternatives to privatization that do not thereby neglect the importance of maintaining citizen solidarity in these societies. This essay explores the potential that amor mundi, a fundamental theme of Hannah Arendt’s political philosophy, has for addressing this vexing issue. In doing so, it also asks whether Arendt’s thematization of the human position between past and future, amidst the demise of tradition, holds any lessons for contemporary Christians. What would it mean for today’s Christian to love a world that has, for both good and ill, become what it is, from out of a past that remains to be discovered, in its full plurality and natal potentiality? Can Christian faith, at the end of the day, do without amor mundi?

In: Crossroad Discourses between Christianity and Culture
In: Looking Beyond?
In: Contemporary Pragmatism
Philosophical Conversations. About Reason and Religion
This book expands upon the dialogue between the atheist philosopher Kai Nielsen and the Christian philosopher Hendrik Hart in the book Search for Community in A Withering Tradition. Collected here for the first time are the responses of several prominent Canadian philosophers to Nielsen's outspoken work in the philosophy of religion, including their responses to Hart's criticisms of Nielsen. New replies by Hart and Nielsen to these added voices are also included. This volume is of interest for students in the philosophy of religion who wish to examine the encounter between religious faith and secular humanism at the close of the twentieth century, an increasingly postmodern time in which the appeal to an a historical standard of rationality is no longer sought or even thought possible. This book tackles tough topics like the appropriate role of reason in the intellectual criticism and defense of faith, the limits of the rational justification of human knowledge, the role of pre-reflective commitments in human intellectual life, the nature of truth, and the possibility for peace in a world consisting of a plural and often violent collection of cultural and religious groups.