Saturday, January 30, 2016

Debased Coynage

I had a lot to say about Jerry Coyne’s Faith versus Fact in my First Things review of the book, but much more could be said.  The reason is not that there is so much of interest in Coyne’s book, but rather because there is so little.  I was not being rhetorical when I said in my review that it might be the worst book yet published in the New Atheist genre.  It really is that awful, and goes wrong so thoroughly and so frequently that it would take a much longer review than I had space for fully to catalog its foibles.  An especially egregious example is Coyne’s treatment of Alvin Plantinga’s “evolutionary argument against naturalism” (or EAAN).

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Upcoming Thomistic workshops

Today is the feast day of St. Thomas Aquinas, and thus a good time to draw attention to several forthcoming Aquinas-related summer workshops.

Mount Saint Mary College in Newburgh, NY will be hosting the Sixth Annual Philosophy Workshop on June 2-5, 2016, on the theme Aquinas on Politics. The presenters will be James Brent, OP, Michael Gorman, Steven Long, Dominic Legge, OP, Angela Knobel, Edward Feser, Thomas Joseph White, OP, and Michael Sherwin, OP.

The Albertus Magnus Center for Scholastic Studies will be holding its 2016 Summer Program in Norcia, Italy from July 10-24.  The focus of the program will be St. Paul's Epistle to the Hebrews and St. Thomas’s commentary on it.

The Witherspoon Institute will be hosting the 11th annual Thomistic Seminar in Princeton, NJ, on August 7-13, 2016, on the theme Aquinas and the Philosophy of Nature.  The faculty will be John Haldane, Sarah Broadie, Edward Feser, Robert Koons, and Candace Vogler.

Friday, January 15, 2016

Islam, Christianity, and liberalism again (Updated)

Hope you won’t mind submitting to one more post on Islam (the last for a while, I hope).  What follows are some comments on some of the discussion of Islam and its relationship to Christianity and to liberalism that has been going on both in my own comboxes and in the rest of the blogosphere in the weeks since I first posted on the subject.

Referring to God and worshipping God

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Liberalism and Islam

Note: What follows is pretty long, especially if you think of it as a blog post.  So think of it instead as an article.  The topic does not, in any event, lend itself to brevity.  Nor do I think it ideal to break up the flow of the argument by dividing the piece into multiple posts.  So here it is in one lump.  It is something of a companion piece to my recent post about whether Christians and Muslims worship the same God.  Critics of that post will, I think, better understand it in light of this one.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Canine theology

In Western culture, the dog is often described as “man’s best friend,” and in Western art, the dog is often used as a symbol for faithfulness.  Suppose, then, that we compare the Catholic faith to a healthy dog.  The analogy might be useful for understanding how other religions appear from the point of view of traditional Catholic theology.  Perhaps non-Catholics will not be amused by the comparisons to follow.  But dog lovers may appreciate them.