•  18
    Human holiness as religious shape apologia
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 46 (2): 63-82. 1999.
    The article critically examines Hans Urs von Balthasar’s core intuition that human holiness has apologetic value for Christianity. It argues that von Balthasar’s claim relies on two notions of ‘proof’, and, in distinguishing between the two notions, it clarifies his position. This clarification is followed by a defense of von Balthasar’s view that it can be rational to accept Christian faith on the grounds of human holiness. However, by way of conclusion, the article proposes that von Balthasar’…Read more
  • The Oneness Hypothesis: Beyond the Boundary of Self
    with Philip J. Ivanhoe, Owen Flanagan, Hagop Sarkissian, and Eric Schwitzgebel
    Columbia University Press. 2018.
    The idea that the self is inextricably intertwined with the rest of the world—the “oneness hypothesis”—can be found in many of the world’s philosophical and religious traditions. Oneness provides ways to imagine and achieve a more expansive conception of the self as fundamentally connected with other people, creatures, and things. Such views present profound challenges to Western hyperindividualism and its excessive concern with self-interest and tendency toward self-centered behavior. This anth…Read more
  • Philosophy and Museums: Volume 79: Essays on the Philosophy of Museums (edited book)
    with Anna Bergqvist and Gary Kemp
    Cambridge University Press. 2017.
    Museums and their practices - especially those involving collection, curation and exhibition - generate a host of philosophical questions. Such questions are not limited to the domains of ethics and aesthetics, but go further into the domains of metaphysics, epistemology and philosophy of religion. Despite the prominence of museums as public institutions, they have until recently received surprisingly little scrutiny from philosophers in the Anglo-American tradition. By bringing together contrib…Read more
  •  6
    This article reviews three basic ways in which the relationship between Abrahamic religion and science has been construed: as fundamentally antagonistic; as non-antagonistically incommensurable; and as complementary. Unfortunately, while each construal seems to offer benefits to the religious believer, none, as the article demonstrates, is without considerable cost.
  •  7
    Hans Urs von Balthasar’s Christocentric philosophical anthropology is the premise not only of his religious epistemology, but also of his whole theological enterprise. The importance of his anthropology to the rest of his theology is often overlooked, because its fundamentals are set out in an early work to which little critical attention has been given: Das Betrachtende Gebet—a work which emphasises the ‘necessity of prayer’. According to von Balthasar, in praying, one encounters God, and it is…Read more
  • Philosophy and Museums : Volume 79: Essays on the Philosophy of Museums (edited book)
    with Gary Kemp and Anna Bergqvist
    Cambridge University Press. 2017.
    Museums and their practices - especially those involving collection, curation and exhibition - generate a host of philosophical questions. Such questions are not limited to the domains of ethics and aesthetics, but go further into the domains of metaphysics, epistemology and philosophy of religion. Despite the prominence of museums as public institutions, they have until recently received surprisingly little scrutiny from philosophers in the Anglo-American tradition. By bringing together contrib…Read more
  •  5
    There have been a number of developments within religious epistemology in recent years. Currently, the dominant view within mainstream philosophy of religion is, arguably, reformed epistemology. What is less well known is that feminist epistemologists have also been active recently within the philosophy of religion, advancing new perspectives from which to view the link between knowledge and religious experience. In this article I examine the claim by certain feminist religious epistemologists t…Read more
  • This article reviews three basic ways in which the relationship between Abrahamic religion and science has been construed: as fundamentally antagonistic; as non‐antagonistically incommensurable; and as complementary. Unfortunately, while each construal seems to offer benefits to the religious believer, none, as the article demonstrates, is without considerable cost.
  •  6
    The chapter explores some of the connections between religious diversity and theism, beginning with a brief review of the scope and meaning of the terms "religion" and "religious diversity". A discussion of why religious diversity is sometimes thought to be problematic prepares the ground for a look at some of the ways in which it has been deployed within arguments for atheism or agnosticism. After outlining some possible responses to these arguments, attention turns to religious pluralism - a t…Read more
  •  1
    This paper examines the challenge that philosophers influenced by positivism posed to religion during the twentieth century, and considers how philosophers more sympathetic to theism responded to this challenge. By focusing upon the trajectory of the philosophical challenge to theism in the twentieth century, this paper seeks to highlight the various ways that the relationship between theistic faith and reason was conceived by those debating the credibility of religious belief. The paper conclud…Read more
  • Book Reviews (review)
    with Kristopher J. Hansen, Jay Goulding, Jeffery Smith, Michele Dumont, Sky Liu, Yaqin Cui, Kai Shen, and Dan Lin
    Dao: A Journal of Comparative Philosophy 2 (1): 163-192. 2002.
  •  11
    Many electronic texts are available in the Christian Classics Ethereal Library. Here you’ll find works from people as diverse as St. John of the Cross and Billy Graham, all indexed by author. The address is: http://ccel.org..
  •  16
    Hans Urs von Balthasar's philosophical anthropology is the premise not only of his religious epistemology, but also of his whole theological enterprise. The importance of his anthropology to the rest of his theology is often overlooked, because its fundamentals are set out in an early work to which little critical attention has been given: Das Betrachtende Gebet– a work which emphasizes the “necessity of prayer”. According to von Balthasar, in praying, one encounters God, and it is through this …Read more
  •  27
    Arguments from design: A self-defeating strategy?
    Philosophia 33 (1-4): 297-317. 2005.
    In this article, after reviewing traditional arguments from design, I consider some more recent versions: the so-called ‘new design arguments’ for the existence of God. These arguments enjoy an apparent advantage over the traditional arguments from design by avoiding some of Hume’s famous criticisms. However, in seeking to render religion and science compatible, it seems that they require a modification not only of our scientific understanding but also of the traditional conception of God. Moreo…Read more
  •  33
    This paper considers some of the ways in which ‘postmodernism’ is construed, before turning to several important representative examples of religious postmodern thought. It highlights some common features possessed by prominent examples of religious postmodern thought within Judaism and Christianity. Much postmodern religious thought is characterised by the separation of religious belief from religious experience, and is marked by the tendency to emphasise the latter at the expense of the former…Read more
  •  25
    Seeing the Dao: conceptual metaphors and the philosophy of religion
    Religious Studies 51 (3): 307-322. 2015.
    This paper suggests that different philosophical traditions have developed and matured around particular conceptual metaphors. It proposes that conceptual metaphor theory provides a useful tool with which to think about different world philosophical traditions, as it can reveal the deep structure of networks of ideas. Conceptual metaphors are not just linguistic devices; rather they organize whole networks of thought, experience, and activity. This idea is explored and special attention paid to …Read more
  •  78
    Internal realism, religious pluralism and ontology
    Philosophia 36 (1): 97-110. 2008.
    Internalist pluralism is an attractive and elegant theory. However, there are two apparently powerful objections to this approach that prevent its widespread adoption. According to the first objection, the resulting analysis of religious belief systems is intrinsically atheistic; while according to the second objection, the analysis is unsatisfactory because it allows religious objects simply to be defined into existence. In this article, I demonstrate that an adherent of internalist pluralism c…Read more
  •  13
    Fragmentary Selves and God-given Identity
    Journal of Indian Philosophy and Religion 11 139-153. 2006.
    This brief study employs Lacan's theory about the self and about the way that our self-image is constituted to highlight some crucial differences between one important Roman Catholic philosophical religious anthropology and one interpretation of the Theravāda Buddhist theory of anattā. It concludes that one persuaded of Lacanian theory would be likely to regard the Roman Catholic model of personal-identity as fostering a particularly tenacious and dangerous illusion, while being likely to view t…Read more
  •  39
    The pragmatics of defining religion in a multi-cultural world
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 59 (3): 133-152. 2006.
    Few seem to have difficulty in distinguishing between religious and secular institutions, yet there is widespread disagreement regarding what "religion" actually means. Indeed, some go so far as to question whether there is anything at all distinctive about religions. Hence, formulating a definition of "religion" that can command wide assent has proven to be an extremely difficult task. In this article I consider the most prominent of the many rival definitions that have been proposed, the major…Read more
  •  38
    In the view of Hans Urs von Balthasar, what is needed to bring a human life to fulfilment—to become ‘whole’—is the death of one's ‘personality’, and the acquisition of one's specific ‘personhood’, which is given to one, along with one's mission, by God. Moreover, according to von Balthasar, a human being becomes a ‘unique person’ when encountering God in contemplative prayer. And it is within contemplative prayer that one comes into contact with one's ‘Idea’, which is actualised when one' person…Read more
  •  6
    Hans Urs von Balthasar's philosophical anthropology is the premise not only of his religious epistemology, but also of his whole theological enterprise. The importance of his anthropology to the rest of his theology is often overlooked, because its fundamentals are set out in an early work to which little critical attention has been given: Das Betrachtende Gebet– a work which emphasizes the “necessity of prayer”. According to von Balthasar, in praying, one encounters God, and it is through this …Read more
  •  37
    Kierkegaard's philosophical fragments: A clarification
    Religious Studies 33 (4): 455-472. 1997.
    The article proposes that the hypothetical framework of Kierkegaard's "Philosophical Fragments" is determined by the question 'How is it possible for one to become a disciple?' An account of this framework is provided by employing an original interpretation of the concept 'the Moment'. This enables an understanding of 'the condition' by means of a contrast between 'Universalist' and 'Particularist' perspectives. Moreover, it is only when the insights offered by both perspectives are combined tha…Read more
  •  39
    Human holiness as religious apologia
    International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 46 (2): 63-82. 1999.
    The article critically examines Hans Urs von Balthasar’s core intuition that human holiness has apologetic value for Christianity. It argues that von Balthasar’s claim relies on two notions of ‘proof’, and, in distinguishing between the two notions, it clarifies his position. This clarification is followed by a defense of von Balthasar’s view that it can be rational to accept Christian faith on the grounds of human holiness. However, by way of conclusion, the article proposes that von Balthasar’…Read more
  •  83
    This paper examines a variety of intellectual responses to the religious and philosophical issues raised by religious plurality. While the specific questions raised by religious plurality differ across traditions, the more general problem that faces all religious intellectuals is how to provide a compelling theoretical account of the relationship between the various religions of the world. The paper briefly reviews religious exclusivism and inclusivism, before focusing upon theories of religious…Read more