A John Hick Reader by Paul Badham (eds.)

By Paul Badham (eds.)

John Hick is likely one of the most generally learn and mentioned dwelling writers in smooth theology and the philosophy of faith. This publication deals scholars a one quantity textbook on his inspiration. Extracts from his writings hide the entire numerous subject matters for which Hick has turn into identified: religion and data, Philosophy of faith, Evil and the God of affection, loss of life and everlasting existence, the parable of God Incarnate, and difficulties of spiritual Pluralism. The extracts are preceded by way of an introductory essay by way of Paul Badham on John Hick's philosophical theology, and at the integrity of his lifestyles and thought.

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The modes of cognition have been classified in various ways. But the distinction that is most relevant to our present purpose is that between what I shall call cognition in presence and cognition in absence; or acquaintance (using this term less restrictedly than it was used by Russell) and holding beliefs-about. We cognise things that are present before us, this being called perception; and we also cognise things in their absence, this being a matter of holding beliefs about them. And the astonishing fact is that while our religious literature - the Bible, and prayers, hymns, sermons, devotional meditations and so on - confidently presupposes a cognition of God by acquaintance, our theological literature in contrast recognises for the most part only cognition in absence.

E. necessarily) 26 A John Hick Reader exists, in distinction from eternally not existing. Even if Phillips were to claim that this question can be definitively settled by philosophical reasoning (as Malcolm perhaps and Hartshorne certainly claim), the question thus settled would still be a perfectly good question. This leads me to my third thesis: Philosophical considerations are relevant to a decision as to whether or not it is reasonable to believe that God exists. Here it seems that Phillips would accept the negative contention that philosophical criticism may render an existing belief untenable, 8 but would deny to philosophy any converse positive office.

As such it would be invulnerable to external criticism but, as the price of such invulnerability, of significance only to those who chose to play this 'game'. The teaching of Jesus, for example, could then no longer be seen as declaring in common human language truths which are of infinite importance to mankind but which are also capable of being questioned from an agnostic or atheist standpoint. 12 And in the course of the paper he goes quite a long way in acknowledging that religious language cannot be an autonomous language-game, discontinuous with the rest of our speech and immune from the possibility of conflict with our other beliefs.

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