Academic journal article Theological Studies

Philosophy of Religion: Towards a More Humane Approach

Academic journal article Theological Studies

Philosophy of Religion: Towards a More Humane Approach

Article excerpt

Philosophy of Religion: Towards a More Humane Approach. By John Cottingham. New York: Cambridge University, 2014. Pp. xiv + 192. $27.99.

The subtitle says it all. For decades, philosophy in English-speaking countries has been dominated by various forms of scientism such as linguistic analysis and logical positivism. Cottingham is old enough to remember an earlier era, and he is suggesting a return to it in the future. Instead of arguing with the shortcomings of the recent past, however, C. proposes what he hopes can provide an agenda for the present. Although addressing his professional colleagues to some extent, C. seems primarily to be directing his book to students taking a university course in the subject, for it is highly readable and it refuses to get into academic debates. It offers an overview of the field, and it assumes a familiarity with Christianity and its traditional concerns: the existence of God, knowledge of the transcendent, moral principles and precepts, the problem of evil, and the possibility of an afterlife. C. does not expand into issues that might be raised by other traditions--for example, the possibility of multiple deities, the function of myth and ritual, and competing truth claims.

One of the book's unique contributions is its proposal that the philosophy of religion needs to get past treating religion as a set of beliefs and to acknowledge that it discloses a way of life. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.