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God, the Mind's Desire
Reference, Reason and Christian Thinking


Part of Cambridge Studies in Christian Doctrine

  • Author: Paul D. Janz, Trinity Western University, British Columbia
  • Date Published: October 2008
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521529617

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About the Authors
  • This 2004 book reconfigures the basic problem of Christian thinking - 'How can human discourse refer meaningfully to a transcendent God?' - as a twofold demand for integrity: integrity of reason and integrity of transcendence. Centring around a provocative yet penetratingly faithful re-reading of Kant's empirical realism, and drawing on an impelling confluence of contemporary thinkers (including MacKinnon, Bonhoeffer, Marion, Putnam, Nagel) Paul D. Janz argues that theology's 'referent' must be located within present empirical reality. Rigorously reasoned yet refreshingly accessible throughout, this book provides an important, attentively informed alternative to the growing trends toward obscurantism, radicalization and anti-reason in many recent assessments of theological cognition, while remaining equally alert to the hazards of traditional metaphysics. In the book's culmination, epistemology and Christology converge around problems of noetic authority and orthodoxy with a kind of innovation, depth and straightforwardness that readers of theology at all levels of philosophical acquaintance will find illuminating.

    • A fresh, provocative yet faithful re-reading of Kant's empirical realism for philosophers and theologians
    • Anti-realism and realism illuminated through Bonhoeffer's Act and Being and MacKinnon's critical metaphysics
    • Theological reference reconfigured as empirical reference
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    Reviews & endorsements

    Review of the hardback: 'This intense and profound book performs the very approach it recommends, by demonstrating throughout intellectual virtues of patience, attention, rigour and commitment. Janz writes well and in a style refreshingly free from self-indulgent obscurity.' The Times Literary Supplement

    Review of the hardback: '… a magnificent achievement … anyone professionally involved in the realist/antirealist debate should read this book and take it seriously. They should also encourage their graduate students to read it.' Reviews in Religion and Theology

    Review of the hardback: '… rewarding study that is carefully argued, challenging and thought provoking for all who are interested in the fate of theological discourse in our so-called postmodern age …' Conversations in Religions and Theology

    Review of the hardback: '… most lucidly argued throughout, frequently persuasive in its analysis of other writers, and profound and innovative in its conclusions … and which speaks of the author as well-read in both theology and philosophy and writes with the confidence of someone who has mastered the relevant literature'. Expository Times

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    Product details

    • Date Published: October 2008
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521529617
    • length: 248 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 152 x 14 mm
    • weight: 0.37kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    1. A reconnaissance of theology and epistemology
    2. Theology and the lure of obscurity
    3. Philosophy's perpetual polarizations: Anti-realism and Realism
    4. Philosophy's perpetual polarizations: making and finding
    5. Philosophy's perpetual polarizations: act and being
    6. The Kantian inversion of 'all previous philosophy'
    7. Tragedy, empirical history and finality
    8. Penultimacy and Christology.

  • Author

    Paul D. Janz, Trinity Western University, British Columbia
    Paul D. Janz is Assistant Professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Trinity Western University, Canada.

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