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Faith, Reason and the Existence of God


  • Date Published: September 2004
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521841610

$ 118.00

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About the Authors
  • The proposition that the existence of God is demonstrable by rational argument is doubted by nearly all philosophical opinion today and is thought by most Christian theologians to be incompatible with Christian faith. This book argues that, on the contrary, there are reasons of faith why in principle the existence of God should be thought rationally demonstrable and that it is worthwhile revisiting the theology of Thomas Aquinas to see why this is so. The book further suggests that philosophical objections to proofs of God's existence rely upon an attenuated and impoverished conception of reason which theologians of all monotheistic traditions might wish to reject. Denys Turner proposes that on a broader and deeper conception of it, human rationality is open to the 'sacramental shape' of creation as such and in its exercise of rational proof of God it in some way participates in that sacramentality of all things.

    • Revisits Thomas Aquinas's thinking on the rational proof of God
    • Challenges prevailing orthodoxies about the impossibility of rational proof
    • Addresses believers and non-believers alike
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'Professor Turner here offers an elegant and sophisticated defence of the conciliar teaching against detractors of both Catholic and Protestant sympathies. … read this book for some of the fems it contains …'. Church Times

    '… remarkable … a major contribution to Catholic theology.' International Journal of Systematic Theology

    'Advanced students of natural theology, theological language and Aquinas will find this an immensely stimulating read.' Themelios

    '… there is much to learn from Turner's work. It should be particularly appealing to those interested in Radical Orthodoxy, natural theology and the thought of Thomas Aquinas.' Scottish Journal of Theology

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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2004
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521841610
    • length: 292 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 21 mm
    • weight: 0.6kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. The 'Shape' of Reason:
    1. Clarifications and issues
    2. Negative theology and natural theology
    3. The darkness of God and the light of Christ
    4. Intellect
    5. Reason and rhetoric
    6. The 'shape' of reason
    Part II. Univocity, Difference, and 'Onto-theology':
    7. Univocity and inference: Duns Scotus
    8. God, grammar, and difference
    9. Existence and God
    Part III. Inference, and the Existence of God:
    10. Analogy and inference
    11. Why anything?
    12. Refusing the question
    13. The God of reason and the God of Christ.

  • Author

    Denys Turner, Yale University, Connecticut
    Denys Turner is Norris-Hulse Professor of Divinity and Fellow of Peterhouse, University of Cambridge. He is the author of Marxism and Christianity (1983), Eros and Allegory (1995), The Darkness of God (CUP, 1995) and Faith Seeking (2002).

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