Monday, April 24, 2006

A Natural Theology

As mentioned in my profile, my faith is informed through natural theology. The difference between natural and non-natural theology is that the former requires that knowledge of the divine acting in and through the world comes from evidence in the world itself, while the later does not.

The first is open and public, the second private and personal. The first can be viewed, experienced, explored, and judged by others outside oneself. The second only exists inside the mind of the individual. The first caters to history, reason, and communal faith. The second caters to feeling and personal faith. The first neither forgets and denies what is beyond nature nor thinks that nature and deity are the same. The second frequently forgets and denies what is in nature, becoming either anti-intellectual or fideistic.

A key difference between my faith and the other's is easily explained by a look at my Stage of Truth where both general and special revelation co-exist to inform one another and reason stands at the front. The typical conservative Protestant or Evangelical will be quick to place scripture (special revelation) at the head of the stage and general revelation behind it.

Check out a wonderful post on the concept of prayer and its significance to science, which echoes the concerns of natural theology: “Science and the Supernatural".

2 Comments:

Blogger Donna B. said...

Thanks for the link. I'd love to know where you ran across my humble little blog.

You might enjoy my opening essay in the recently released Handbook of Process Theology (Chalice, 2006) in which I defend natural theology to some extent against a Barthian attack. I look forward to your feedback.

10:58 AM  
Blogger slaveofone said...

Ah, the countless doorways in cyberspace. Who can follow their paths?

I would love to see your essay. With friends like Barth in Christianity, who needs enemies? ;)

11:33 AM  

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