The Experience of God

Being, Consciousness, Bliss

Author: David Bentley Hart

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9780300209358

Category: Religion

Page: 365

View: 5648

Despite the recent ferocious public debate about belief, the concept most central to the discussion "God" frequently remains vaguely and obscurely described. Are those engaged in these arguments even talking about the same thing? In a wide-ranging response to this confusion, esteemed scholar David Bentley Hart pursues a clarification of how the word "God" functions in the world's great theistic faiths. Ranging broadly across Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Vedantic and Bhaktic Hinduism, Sikhism, and Buddhism, Hart explores how these great intellectual traditions treat humanity's knowledge of the divine mysteries. Constructing his argument around three principal metaphysical "moments"--Being, consciousness, and bliss- the author demonstrates an essential continuity between our fundamental experience of reality and the ultimate reality to which that experience inevitably points.

The Experience of God

Being, Consciousness, Bliss

Author: David Bentley Hart

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300167334

Category: Religion

Page: 192

View: 726

Despite the recent ferocious public debate about belief, the concept most central to the discussion—God—frequently remains vaguely and obscurely described. Are those engaged in these arguments even talking about the same thing? In a wide-ranging response to this confusion, esteemed scholar David Bentley Hart pursues a clarification of how the word “God” functions in the world’s great theistic faiths. Ranging broadly across Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Vedantic and Bhaktic Hinduism, Sikhism, and Buddhism, Hart explores how these great intellectual traditions treat humanity’s knowledge of the divine mysteries. Constructing his argument around three principal metaphysical “moments”—being, consciousness, and bliss—the author demonstrates an essential continuity between our fundamental experience of reality and the ultimate reality to which that experience inevitably points. Thoroughly dismissing such blatant misconceptions as the deists' concept of God, as well as the fundamentalist view of the Bible as an objective historical record, Hart provides a welcome antidote to simplistic manifestoes. In doing so, he plumbs the depths of humanity’s experience of the world as powerful evidence for the reality of God and captures the beauty and poetry of traditional reflection upon the divine.

The Story of Christianity

Author: David Bentley Hart

Publisher: Quercus

ISBN: 1623656087

Category: History

Page: 272

View: 2898

The story of Christianity is an immeasurably fascinating one. A faith that began in Roman occupied Palestine, as a small and fugitive faction within Judaism, grew, thrived and finally "conquered" the empire that had sought to exterminate it. Then, over many centuries and in many lands, it became the vital source from which new civilizations sprang. At times, its geographical range expanded mightily, at others contracted perilously. At times, the church proved heroically true to its deepest moral principles; at others, inexcusably traitorous to them. But, by the beginning of the 21st century, this faith that began in such fragility, and that became so powerful--even though its temporal power has now receded in its historic homelands--is the most widespread and diverse of all religions. Christianity is rapidly taking root in cultures very different from those in which it was born and in which it once flourished, and is assuming configurations that could not have been anticipated a century ago. In The Story of Christianity, the distinguished theologian David Bentley Hart provides a broad picture of Christian history. Presented in 50 short chapters--each focusing on a critical facet of Christian history or theology, and each amplified by timelines, quotations, and color images--his magisterial account does full justice to the range of Christian tradition, belief and practice--Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Anglican, Presbyterian, Evangelical, Coptic, Chaldean, Ethiopian Orthodox, Armenian Orthodox, Malankaran, to name but a few of the many possibilities. From the persecutions of the early church to the papal-imperial conflicts of the Middle Ages, from the religious wars of 16th and 17th-century Europe to the challenges of science and secularism in the modern era, and from the ancient Christian communities of Africa and Asia to the "house churches" of contemporary China, The Story of Christianity triumphantly captures the heterogeneous richness of Christian history.

Atheist Delusions

The Christian Revolution and Its Fashionable Enemies

Author: David Bentley Hart

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300155646

Category: History

Page: 268

View: 5926

Religious scholar Hart argues that contemporary antireligious polemics are based not only upon conceptual confusions but upon facile simplifications of history and provides a powerful antidote to the New Atheists' misrepresentations of the Christian past.

The Doors of the Sea

Where Was God in the Tsunami?

Author: David Bentley Hart

Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing

ISBN: 0802866867

Category: Religion

Page: 136

View: 2880

As news reports of the horrific December 2004 tsunami in Asia reached the rest of the world, commentators were quick to seize upon the disaster as proof of either God s power or God s nonexistence, asking over and over, How could a good and loving God if such exists allow such suffering? In The Doors of the Sea David Bentley Hart speaks at once to those skeptical of Christian faith and to those who use their Christian faith to rationalize senseless human suffering. He calls both to recognize in the worst catastrophes not the providential will of God but rather the ongoing struggle between the rebellious powers that enslave the world and the God who loves it wholly.

The Devil and Pierre Gernet

Stories

Author: David Bentley Hart

Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing

ISBN: 0802817688

Category: Fiction

Page: 172

View: 5653

Brilliant scholar and wordsmith David Bentley Hart turns his mind and imagination to narrative fiction in this volume, The Devil and Pierre Gernet, a thought-provoking collection of four short stories and one novella. Anticipating questions about his shift in genre, Hart writes that "God is no more likely (and probably a good deal less likely) to be found in theology than in poetry and fiction." These stories -- "The Devil and Pierre Gernet," "The House of Apollo," "A Voice from the Emerald World," "The Ivory Gate," and "The Other" -- beguile and entrance the reader through Hart's engrossing, opulent writing style and the complex characters he evokes and explores. Often bedazzling, sometimes heartbreaking, and ultimately mesmerizing, Hart's wide-ranging stories are united by a common thread of haunting religious and philosophical questions about this life and the next. Here is fiction to fully engage both the mind and the heart.

Proofs of God

Classical Arguments from Tertullian to Barth

Author: Matthew Levering

Publisher: Baker Academic

ISBN: 1493403362

Category: Religion

Page: 256

View: 5304

Leading theologian Matthew Levering presents a thoroughgoing critical survey of the proofs of God's existence for readers interested in traditional Christian responses to the problem of atheism. Beginning with Tertullian and ending with Karl Barth, Levering covers twenty-one theologians and philosophers from the early church to the modern period, examining how they answered the critics of their day. He also shows the relevance of the classical arguments to contemporary debates and challenges to Christianity. In addition to students, this book will appeal to readers of apologetics.

The Tides of Mind: Uncovering the Spectrum of Consciousness

Author: David Gelernter

Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company

ISBN: 1631490842

Category: Science

Page: 288

View: 4512

A “rock star” (New York Times) of the computing world provides a radical new work on the meaning of human consciousness. The holy grail of psychologists and scientists for nearly a century has been to understand and replicate both human thought and the human mind. In fact, it's what attracted the now-legendary computer scientist and AI authority David Gelernter to the discipline in the first place. As a student and young researcher in the 1980s, Gelernter hoped to build a program with a dial marked "focus." At maximum "focus," the program would "think" rationally, formally, reasonably. As the dial was turned down and "focus" diminished, its "mind" would start to wander, and as you dialed even lower, this artificial mind would start to free-associate, eventually ignoring the user completely as it cruised off into the mental adventures we know as sleep. While the program was a only a partial success, it laid the foundation for The Tides of Mind, a groundbreaking new exploration of the human psyche that shows us how the very purpose of the mind changes throughout the day. Indeed, as Gelernter explains, when we are at our most alert, when reasoning and creating new memories is our main mental business, the mind is a computer-like machine that keeps emotion on a short leash and attention on our surroundings. As we gradually tire, however, and descend the "mental spectrum," reasoning comes unglued. Memory ranges more freely, the mind wanders, and daydreams grow more insistent. Self-awareness fades, reflection blinks out, and at last we are completely immersed in our own minds. With far-reaching implications, Gelernter’s landmark "Spectrum of Consciousness" finally helps decode some of the most mysterious wonders of the human mind, such as the numinous light of early childhood, why dreams are so often predictive, and why sadism and masochism underpin some of our greatest artistic achievements. It’s a theory that also challenges the very notion of the mind as a machine—and not through empirical studies or "hard science" but by listening to our great poets and novelists, who have proven themselves as humanity's most trusted guides to the subjective mind and inner self. In the great introspective tradition of Wilhelm Wundt and René Descartes, David Gelernter promises to not only revolutionize our understanding of what it means to be human but also to help answer many of our most fundamental questions about the origins of creativity, thought, and consciousness.

The Hidden and the Manifest

Author: Hart, David Bentley

Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing

ISBN: 0802865968

Category: Metaphysics

Page: 358

View: 7411

Rowan Williams says that David Bentley Hart "can always be relied on to offer a perspective on the Christian faith that is both profound and unexpected." The Hidden and the Manifest, a new collection of this brilliant scholar's work, contains twenty essays by Hart on theology and metaphysics. Spanning Hart's career both topically and over time, these essays cover such subjects as the Orthodox understanding of Eucharistic sacrifice; the metaphysics of Paradise Lost; Christianity, modernity, and freedom; death, final judgment, and the meaning of life; and many more.

The New Testament

A Translation

Author: N.A

Publisher: Yale University Press

ISBN: 0300186096

Category: Bibles

Page: 616

View: 8044

"David Bentley Hart undertook this new translation of the New Testament etsi doctrina non daretur, "as if doctrine is not given." Reproducing the texts' often fragmentary formulations without augmentation or correction, he has produced an often pitilessly literal translation of the early Christians' sometimes raw, astonished, and halting prose, one that captures the texts' frequent impenetrability and unfinished quality while awakening readers to an uncanniness that often lies hidden beneath doctrinal layers. This rendering also challenges the idea that the New Testament affirms the kind of people we are. Hart reminds us that the first Christians were a company of extremists, radical in their rejection of the values and priorities of society not only at its most degenerate, but often at its most reasonable and decent. "To live as the New Testament language requires," he writes, "Christians would have to become strangers and sojourners on the earth, to have here no enduring city, to belong to a Kingdom truly not of this world. And we surely cannot do that, can we?""--Jacket flap.

The Beauty of the Infinite

The Aesthetics of Christian Truth

Author: David Bentley Hart

Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing

ISBN: 9780802829214

Category: Philosophy

Page: 462

View: 5513

The Beauty of the Infinite is a splendid extended essay in "theological aesthetics." David Bentley Hart here meditates on the power of a Christian understanding of beauty and sublimity to rise above the violence -- both philosophical and literal -- characteristic of the postmodern world. The book begins by tracing the shifting use and nature of metaphysics in the thought of Kant, Hegel, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Lyotard, Derrida, Deleuze, Nancy, Levinas, and others. Hart pays special attention to Nietzsche's famous narrative of the "will to power" -- a narrative largely adopted by the world today -- and he offers an engaging revision (though not rejection) of the genealogy of nihilism, thereby highlighting the significant "interruption" that Christian thought introduced into the history of metaphysics. This discussion sets the stage for a retrieval of the classic Christian account of beauty and sublimity, and of the relation of both to the question of being. Written in the form of a dogmatica minora, this main section of the book offers a pointed reading of the Christian story in four moments, or parts: Trinity, creation, salvation, and eschaton. Through a combination of narrative and argument throughout, Hart ends up demonstrating the power of Christian metaphysics not only to withstand the critiques of modern and postmodern thought but also to move well beyond them. Strikingly original and deeply rewarding, The Beauty of the Infinite is both a constructively critical account of the history of metaphysics and a compelling contribution to it.

The God Who Saves

A Dogmatic Sketch

Author: David W. Congdon

Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers

ISBN: 1608998274

Category: Religion

Page: 340

View: 6553

Christian universalism has been explored in its biblical, philosophical, and historical dimensions. For the first time, The God Who Saves explores it in systematic theological perspective. In doing so it also offers a fresh take on universal salvation, one that is postmetaphysical, existential, and hermeneutically critical. The result is a constructive account of soteriology that does justice to both the universal scope of divine grace and the historicity of human existence. In The God Who Saves David W. Congdon orients theology systematically around the New Testament witness to the apocalyptic inbreaking of God's reign. The result is a consistently soteriocentric theology. Building on the insights of Rudolf Bultmann, Ernst Kasemann, Eberhard Jungel, and J. Louis Martyn, he interprets the saving act of God as the eschatological event that crucifies the old cosmos in Christ. Human beings participate in salvation through their unconscious, existential cocrucifixion, in which each person is interrupted by God and placed outside of himself or herself. Both academically rigorous and pastorally sensitive, The God Who Saves opens up new possibilities for understanding not only what salvation is but also who the God who brings about our salvation is. Here is an interdisciplinary exercise in dogmatic theology for the twenty-first century.

True Paradox

How Christianity Makes Sense of Our Complex World

Author: David Skeel

Publisher: InterVarsity Press

ISBN: 0830896694

Category: Religion

Page: 179

View: 957

Foreword Review's 17th Annual INDIEFAB Book of the Year Finalist (Religion) How do we explain human consciousness? Where do we get our sense of beauty? Why do we recoil at suffering? Why do we have moral codes that none of us can meet? Why do we yearn for justice, yet seem incapable of establishing it? Any philosophy or worldview must make sense of the world as we actually experience it. We need to explain how we can discern qualities such as beauty and evil and account for our practices of morality and law. The complexity of the contemporary world is sometimes seen as an embarrassment for Christianity. But law professor David Skeel makes a fresh case for the plausibility and explanatory power of Christianity. The Christian faith offers plausible explanations for the central puzzles of our existence, such as our capacity for idea-making, our experience of beauty and suffering, and our inability to create a just social order. When compared with materialism or other sets of beliefs, Christianity provides a more comprehensive framework for understanding human life as we actually live it. We need not deny the complexities of life as we experience it. But the paradoxes of our existence can lead us to the possibility that the existence of God could make sense of it all.

A Splendid Wickedness and Other Essays

Author: David Bentley Hart

Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing

ISBN: 0802872646

Category: Religion

Page: 320

View: 3529

"Incisive essays from a master wordsmith" Why has Don Juan become so passe of late? What s the trouble with Ayn Rand? How did the Doge of Venice come to venerate the counterfeit remains of Siddhartha Gautama? Why does the Bentley family s collection of ancestral relics include a bronzed human thumb? And what, exactly, is the story behind Great Uncle Aloysius, who was born a Quaker but died a pagan? This collection of occasional essays brings us David Bentley Hart at his finest: startlingly clear and deliciously abstruse, coolly wise and burningly witty, fresh and timeless, mystical and concrete often all at once. Hart s incisive blend of philosophy, moral theology, and cultural criticism, together with his flair for both the well-told story and the well-turned phrase, is sure to delight. "

Analogia Entis: Metaphysics

Original Structure and Universal Rhythm

Author: Erich Pryzwara,John R. Betz,David Bentley Hart

Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing

ISBN: 0802868592

Category: Philosophy

Page: 628

View: 1687

Although Erich Przywara (1889 1972) was one of the preeminent Catholic theologians of his time and a profound influence on such people as Hans Urs von Balthasar and Joseph Ratzinger, he has remained virtually unknown in North America. This volume includes Przywara s groundbreaking Analogia Entis, originally published in 1932, and his subsequent essays on the concept analogia entis -- the analogy between God and creation -- which has currency in philosophical and theological circles today.

The God Delusion

Author: Richard Dawkins

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 1784161926

Category: Atheism

Page: 496

View: 9747

The God Delusion caused a sensation when it was published in 2006. Within weeks it became the most hotly debated topic, with Dawkins himself branded as either saint or sinner for presenting his hard-hitting, impassioned rebuttal of religion of all types. His argument could hardly be more topical. While Europe is becoming increasingly secularized, the rise of religious fundamentalism, whether in the Middle East or Middle America, is dramatically and dangerously dividing opinion around the world. In America, and elsewhere, a vigorous dispute between 'intelligent design' and Darwinism is seriously undermining and restricting the teaching of science. In many countries religious dogma from medieval times still serves to abuse basic human rights such as women's and gay rights. And all from a belief in a God whose existence lacks evidence of any kind. Dawkins attacks God in all his forms. He eviscerates the major arguments for religion and demonstrates the supreme improbability of a supreme being. He shows how religion fuels war, foments bigotry and abuses children. The God Delusion is a brilliantly argued, fascinating polemic that will be required reading for anyone interested in this most emotional and important subject.

Tao of Islam, The

A Sourcebook on Gender Relationships in Islamic Thought

Author: Sachiko Murata

Publisher: SUNY Press

ISBN: 1438413939

Category: Religion

Page: 397

View: 9162

The Tao of Islam is a rich and diverse anthology of Islamic teachings on the nature of the relationships between God and the world, the world and the human being, and the human being and God. Focusing on gender symbolism, Sachiko Murata shows that Muslim authors frequently analyze the divine reality and its connections with the cosmic and human domains with a view toward a complementarity or polarity of principles that is analogous to the Chinese idea of yin/yang. Murata believes that the unity of Islamic thought is found, not so much in the ideas discussed, as in the types of relationships that are set up among realities. She pays particular attention to the views of various figures commonly known as "Sufis" and "philosophers," since they approach these topics with a flexibility and subtlety not found in other schools of thought. She translates several hundred pages, most for the first time, from more than thirty important Muslims including the Ikhwan al-Safa', Avicenna, and Ibn al-'Arabi.

The Kingdom of God Is Within You

Author: Leo Tolstoy

Publisher: BookRix

ISBN: 3736804563

Category: Religion

Page: 493

View: 9841

The Kingdom of God Is Within You is the non-fiction magnum opus of Leo Tolstoy. The book was first published in Germany in after being banned in his home country of Russia. It is the culmination of thirty years of Tolstoy's Christian anarchist thinking, and lays out a new organization for society based on a literal Christian interpretation. The title of the book is taken from Luke 17:21. In the book Tolstoy speaks of the principle of non-violent resistance when confronted by violence, as taught by Jesus Christ. When Christ says to turn the other cheek, Tolstoy asserts that Christ means to abolish violence, even the defensive kind, and to give up revenge. Tolstoy rejects the interpretation of Roman and medieval scholars who attempted to limit its scope. "How can you kill people, when it is written in God’s commandment: ‘Thou shalt not murder’?” Tolstoy took the viewpoint that all governments who waged war are an affront to Christian principles. As the Russian Orthodox Church was—at the time—an organization merged with the Russian state and fully supporting state's policy, Tolstoy sought to separate its teachings from what he believed to be the true gospel of Christ, specifically the Sermon on the Mount. Tolstoy advocated non-violence as a solution to nationalist woes and as a means for seeing the hypocrisy of the church. In reading Jesus' words in the Gospels, Tolstoy notes that the modern church is a heretical creation: "Nowhere nor in anything, except in the assertion of the Church, can we find that God or Christ founded anything like what churchmen understand by the Church.”

No God, No Science

Theology, Cosmology, Biology

Author: Michael Hanby,John Milbank,Catherine Pickstock,Graham Ward

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 111923087X

Category: Religion

Page: 454

View: 985

'No God, No Science' presents a work of philosophical theology that retrieves the Christian doctrine of creation from the distortions imposed upon it by positivist science and the Darwinian tradition of evolutionary biology.

God, Religion and Reality

Author: Stephen R. L. Clark

Publisher: Society for Promoting Christian

ISBN: 9780281051335

Category: Religion

Page: 177

View: 1552

In this engaging study Professor Clark sets out to show that there are good philosophical reasons for theism, and Christian theism in particular. He travels the breadth of our intellectual engagement with the world, from ethics to scientific knowledge, and his journey is vigorously argued, fresh, lively and readable. He explores the assumptions which underpin our philosophical and everyday thinking alike, examines the construction of the arguments used to support them, and tests the sturdiness and the makeup of their props and foundations.