•  3250
    Friedrich Schleiermacher and Rudolf Otto
    In John Corrigan (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Religion and Emotion, Oxford University Press. 2008.
    Two names often grouped together in the study of religion are Friedrich Schleiermacher (1768–1884) and Rudolf Otto (1869–1937). Central to their understanding of religion is the idea that religious experience, characterized in terms of feeling, lies at the heart of all genuine religion. In his book On Religion, Schleiermacher speaks of religion as a “sense and taste for the Infinite.” In The Christian Faith, Schleiermacher grounds religion in the immediate self-consciousness and the “feeling of …Read more
  •  2423
    Making Sense of Kant’s Highest Good
    with West Lafayette
    Kant-Studien 91 (3): 329-355. 2000.
    This paper explores Kant's concept of the highest good and the postulate of the existence of God arising from it. Kant has two concepts of the highest good standing in tension with one another, an immanent and a transcendent one. I provide a systematic exposition of the constituents of both variants and show how Kant’s arguments are prone to confusion through a conflation of both concepts. I argue that once these confusions are sorted out Kant’s claim regarding the need to postulate God’s existe…Read more
  •  1500
    This paper explores the charge by Bruce Aune and Allen Wood that a gap exists in Kant's derivation of the Categorical Imperative. I show that properly understood, no such gap exists, and that the deduction of the Categorical Imperative is successful as it stands.
  •  1148
    Kant on grace: A reply to his critics
    Religious Studies 33 (4): 379-400. 1997.
    Against those who dismiss Kant's project in the "Religion" because it provides a Pelagian understanding of salvation, this paper offers an analysis of the deep structure of Kant's views on divine justice and grace showing them not to conflict with an authentically Christian understanding of these concepts. The first part of the paper argues that Kant's analysis of these concepts helps us to understand the necessary conditions of the Christian understanding of grace: unfolding them uncovers intri…Read more
  •  897
    In my chapter "Christology and Anthropology in Friedrich Schleiermacher,” I discuss Schleiermacher's understanding of both the person and work of Christ. Schleiermacher's dialogue with the orthodox Christological tradition preceding him, as well as his understanding of the work of Christ, is founded on a critical analysis of the fundamental person-forming experience of being in relation to Christ and the community founded by him. I provide an analysis of Schleiermacher's discussion of the diff…Read more
  •  649
    This article explores the early Schleiermacher's attempts to deal with difficult philosophical problems arising from Kant's ethics, specifically Kant's notion of transcendental freedom. How do we connect a transcendentally free act with the nature of the subject? Insofar as the act is transcendentally free, it cannot be understood in terms of causes, and this means that it cannot be connected with the previous state of the individual before he or she engaged in the act. I work through Schleier…Read more
  •  570
    This paper explores two themes—Schleiermacher’s realism and his perspectivalism—and their significance for a theory of religion. I show that Schleiermacher's theory offers an account of human subjectivity and epistemological modesty that at the same time allows us to affirm the reality of the Absolute.
  •  545
    One of the principle aims of the B version of Kant’s transcendental deduction is to show how it is possible that the same “I think” can accompany all of my representations, which is a transcendental condition of the possibility of judgment. Contra interpreters such as A. Brook, I show that this “I think” is an a priori (reflected) self-consciousness; contra P. Keller, I show that this a priori self-consciousness is first and foremost a consciousness of one’s personal identity from a first person…Read more
  •  526
    The Religious Significance of Kant’s Ethics
    American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly 75 (2): 179-200. 2001.
    This paper provides analysis of Kant's Categorical Imperative and its relevance to religion. I discuss what the concept of a categorical imperative implies about self-transcendence, and what this understanding of self-transcendence indicates about the self's relation to God and others.
  •  486
    Both in the Speeches and in The Christian Faith Schleiermacher offers a comprehensive theory of the nature of religion, grounding it in experience. In the Speeches Schleiermacher grounds religion in an original unity of consciousness that precedes the subject–object dichotomy; in The Christian Faith the feeling of absolute dependence is grounded in the immediate self-consciousness. I argue that Schleiermacher's theory offers a generally coherent account of how it is possible that differing relig…Read more
  •  410
    The Religious A Priori in Otto and its Kantian Origins
    In Heinrich Assel, Christine Helmer & Bruce McCormack (eds.), Luther, Barth, and Movements of Theological Renewal 1918-1833, De Gruyter. forthcoming.
    This paper provides an analysis of Rudolph Otto's understanding of the structures of human consciousness making possible the appropriation of revelation. Already in his dissertation on Luther's understanding of the Holy Spirit, Otto was preoccupied with how the " outer " of revelation could be united to these inner structures. Later, in his groundbreaking Idea of the Holy, Otto would explore the category of the numinous, an element of religious experience tied to the irrational element of the ho…Read more
  •  361
    Theism in 19th and 20th Century Intellectual Life
    In Charles Taliaferro, Victoria Harrison & Stewart Goetz (eds.), Routledge Companion to Theism, Routledge. 2012.
    This chapter traces how theism was developed by leading 19th and 20th century figures (Schleiermacher, Hegel, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Rahner, and Tillich) responding to Kant’s Copernican revolution in philosophy. Part one deals with the ontological nature of subjectivity itself and what it reveals about the conditions of the possibility of a subject’s relation to the Absolute. Part two explores the role of subjectivity and interiority in the individual’s relation to God, and part three takes …Read more
  •  336
    On Some Presumed Gaps in Kant's Refutation of Idealism
    In Udo Rameil (ed.), Metaphysik und Kritik, Walter De Gruyter. 2004.
    Kant’s aim in the Refutation of Idealism is to show that the temporal determination of inner experience presupposes outer experience. Commentators have rightly noted the extraordinarily compressed character of Kant's argument, and numerous gaps in the argument have been pointed out. In this paper I focus on two of these gaps and provide a reconstruction of Kant's argument that closes them.
  •  327
    This is the third chapter of my book Transformation of the self, which covers Schleiermacher's reception of Kant on the problem of personal identity.
  •  319
    Holiness
    In Charles Taliaferro, Paul Draper & Phil Quinn (eds.), A Companion to the Philosophy of Religion, Wiley-blackwell. 2010.
    This essay analyzes the category of “the holy” as developed by Rudolf Otto, examining his division of the holy into rational and non-rational elements. While rational elements of the holy are closely tied to ethics, another aspect of the holy can only be apprehended through sui generis feelings irreducible to other mental states. But how do non-rational elements relate to rational, ethical categories? I trace the distinction between rational and non-rational elements in Otto’s analysis to Kant…Read more
  •  290
    A review of Chris Firestone's Kant and Theology at the Boundaries of Reason.
  •  271
    Aristotle as A-Theorist: Overcoming the Myth of Passage
    Journal of the History of Philosophy 39 (2): 169-192. 2001.
    Debate about the nature of time has been dominated by discussion of two issues: the reality of absolute time and the reality of A-series. We argue that Aristotle adopts a form of the A-theory entailing a denial of the reality of absolute time. Furthermore, Aristotle's denial of absolute time is linked to a denial of the reality of pure temporal becoming, namely, the idea that the now moves through a fixed continuum along which events are arranged in chronological order. We show that the puzzles …Read more
  •  222
    Transformation and Personal Identity In Kant
    Faith and Philosophy 17 (4): 479-497. 2000.
    In this paper I explore how Kant’s development of the idea of the disposition in the Religion copes with problems implied by Kant’s idea of transcendental freedom. Since transcendental freedom implies the power of absolutely beginning a state, and therefore of absolutely beginning a series of the consequences of that state, a transcendentally free act is divorced from the preceding state of an agent, and would thus seem to be divorced from the agent’s character as well. The paper is divided into…Read more
  •  204
    Aristotle as A-Theorist: Overcoming the Myth of Passage
    Journal of History of Philosophy 39 169-192. 2001.
    Two things are often said about Aristotle's treatment of time in the Physics. First, that Aristotle's considered view of time is intrinsically tied to a language of temporal passage heavily dependent on the A-series. As such Aristotle's understanding of time is plagued with the perplexities that the A-series generates. Second, that the series of puzzles that Aristotle treats in IV.10, leading to the conclusion that time is non-existent, are left unanswered by Aristotle. Instead after presenting …Read more
  •  194
    This paper combines both an exegetical and philosophical approach to the treatment of miracles in the Markan gospel. Using key insights developed by biblical scholars bearing on the problem of Mark’s treatment of miracles as a basis, I conclude that for the author of Mark, miracles are effects, and as such, signs and symbols of what occurs in the moral and spiritual order. I argue that Mark connects miracles with faith in Jesus, a faith qualified through a grasp of the proper exercise of human p…Read more
  •  187
    All or Nothing: Systematicity, Transcendental Arguments, and Skepticism in German Idealism by Paul W. Franks (review)
    Zeitschrift für Neuere Theologiegeschichte/Journal for the History of Modern Theology 14 (1): 145-149. 2007.
  •  185
  •  184
    This paper explores the reception of Kant's understanding of consciousness by both Romantics and Idealists from 1785 to 1799, and traces its impact on the theory of religion. I first look at Kant's understanding of consciousness as developed in the first Critique, and then looks at how figures such as Fichte, Jacobi, Hölderlin, Novalis, and Schleiermacher received this theory of consciousness and its implications for their understanding of religion.
  •  181
    Selfhood and Relationality
    In Joel Rasmussen, Judith Wolfe & Johannes Zachhuber (eds.), Oxford Handbook for Nineteenth Century Christian Thought, Oxford University Press. pp. 127-142. 2017.
    Nineteenth century Christian thought about self and relationality was stamped by the reception of Kant’s groundbreaking revision to the Cartesian cogito. For René Descartes (1596-1650), the self is a thinking thing (res cogitans), a simple substance retaining its unity and identity over time. For Immanuel Kant (1724-1804), on the other hand, consciousness is not a substance but an ongoing activity having a double constitution, or two moments: first, the original activity of consciousness, what K…Read more
  •  161
    The Role of Limits in Aristotle’s Concept of Place
    Southern Journal of Philosophy 31 (2): 205-216. 1993.
  •  149
    This paper explores three important criticisms of Kant's ethics by Friedrich Schleiermacher, all having to do with Kant's alleged failure to account for the value of the individual. These are: (1) Kant's formalism precludes him from specifying ends for the will, and without such ends, the moral perfection of the individual, and the genuine appreciation of the other in his or her individuality cannot become my end; (2) Kant cannot provide an adequate metaphysical grounding of the value of the in…Read more
  •  137
    Kant’s Robust Theory of Grace
    Con-Textos Kantianos 6 302-320. 2017.
    In this paper I argue against two prevailing views of Kant’s Religion. Against commentators such as Michalson and Quinn, who have argued that Kant’s project in Religion is riddled with inconsistencies and circularities, I show that a proper understanding of Kant’s views on grace reveals these do not exist. And contra commentators that attribute to Kant at best a minimalist conception of grace, I show that Kant’s view of it is remarkably robust. I argue that Kant works with three different concep…Read more
  •  123
    Is God a Delusion? A Reply to Religion’s Cultured Despisers
    Faith and Philosophy 28 (4): 464-468. 2011.
    Review of Eric Reitan's Is God a Delusion
  •  115
    Friedrich Schleiermacher: Between Enlightenment and Romanticism. By Richard Crouter (review)
    Journal of the American Academy of Religion 10 200-204. 2007.
    My review of this book.
  •  107
    The Role of Limits in Aristotle’s Concept of Place
    Southern Journal of Philosophy 31 (2): 205-216. 1993.