Paul Ricoeur between Theology and Philosophy: Detour and by Boyd Blundell

By Boyd Blundell

Paul Ricoeur (1913–2005) continues to be one in every of philosophy of religion's such a lot specific voices. Ricoeur used to be a thinker first, and whereas his non secular reflections are very appropriate to theology, Boyd Blundell argues that his philosophy is much more correct. utilizing Ricoeur's personal philosophical hermeneutics, Blundell indicates that there's a approach for explicitly Christian theology to keep up either its integrity and total relevance. He demonstrates how the dominant trend of detour and go back discovered all through Ricoeur’s paintings offers a route to figuring out the connection among philosophy and theology. by means of placing Ricoeur in discussion with present, basic, and longstanding debates concerning the position of philosophy in theology, Blundell deals a hermeneutically delicate engagement with Ricoeur's idea from a theological perspective.

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Those unwilling to give publicly accessible arguments are considered not so much wrong as ill-mannered. If a theologian makes an argument in academic discourse that relies explicitly on a confessional truth such as the deity of Christ or the operation of the Spirit as the third person of the Trinity, such that the argument makes no sense without it, it makes even those academics who are serious and of good will a little uneasy. Even when there is agreement, there is the sense that the argument should not be so crudely theological, and a search is made to translate the argument into less problematic, that is, more publicly accessible language.

But if an academic interlocutor is simply not willing to listen to what is said because it is explicitly theological, the last thing to do is compromise the content of the message to improve its presentation. Theologians, when speaking as theologians, will inevitably speak in theological language. An interlocutor who resolutely objects to the use of theological language is someone who does not want to talk to a theologian. , continue to have a positive impact in the academic world), theologians must behave with the good manners appropriate to the occasion.

Engaging other religions (including secular humanism) in ethical conversations and calling them theological marks a dramatic shift from the apologists of old. This not only suggests a category error, but can render the dialogue bloodless by robbing the interlocutors of that which motivates them. Dealing effectively with a pluralist culture need not entail becoming 26 | Th e M a i n R oa d pluralist about our own religious identity. ”30 If, in facing the demands of an academic environment, theologians adopt the strategy of omitting the specifics of the Christian faith due to their distressing particularity, then theologians will finally self-censor themselves right out of theology.

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