Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Burrell on the distinction between philosophical theology and the philosophy of religion

". . . Thomas Aquinas offers us the stellar example of how someone, in trying to use philosophy to search for the truth of our faith, will have to transform ordinary philosophical categories.  And that transforming is to me the difference between the work I dophilosophical theologyand standard philosophy of religion.  Because the tendency of philosophers of religion is to think that their philosophical categories will work everywhere and there's no need to transform them to talk about God.  To my mind, the result of that is a procrustean picture of Godin effect an idol.  If you've got to fit God into your philosophical categories, then it's no longer God you're talking about.  And interestingly enough, something analogous can happen with ethical categories which have emerged in a climate without reference to a transcendent Creator. . . ."

David Burrell as interviewed by Rupert Shortt in God's advocates: Christian thinkers in conversation (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2005), 137.

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