"I am a philosopher because I am a Christian," writes Brian Leftow. "To many intellectuals, this probably sounds like saying that I am a dog because I am a cat." Indeed, prejudice against religious belief runs deep in the academy; in particular, many philosophers hold that faith is incompatible with their profession. But Thomas Morris has met that view head-on by asking a distinguished group of philosophers to write about the union of faith and reason in their lives.
God and the Philosophers offers a series of highly personal, thoughtful essays by traditionally religious philosophers, revealing the power of belief in their intellectually rigorous lives and work. Figures such as William P. Alston, William J. Wainwright, Marilyn McCord Adams, Peter van Inwagen, and Morris himself, to name a few, speak of their own spiritual journeys, sharing their experiences as philosophically reflective individuals seeking to center themselves on God. We read of conversions from unbelief, struggles with doubts raised by the presence of evil in the world, and changing convictions shaped by constant questioning and communing with God. For example, Brian Leftow describes his acceptance of Christianity, after being raised in a secular Jewish home, and Laura Garcia writes about her conversion to Catholicism from her earlier Protestant stance. Along the way, the writers reveal religious philosophy at work--demonstrating, as Arthur F. Holmes writes, "the motivation to intellectual inquiry that Christian faith brings." Here we see how individuals with extraordinary intellectual training, discipline, and knowledge grapple with personal and existential problems, drawing on their faith as well as their finely honed reason to achieve new understanding.
Profoundly honest and deeply thoughtful, these essays reveal how highly educated philosophers--working in the halls of dispassionate analysis--come to grips with their faith in a skeptical world. Together, they make a profound statement on contemporary spirituality, and the quandaries facing today's religious individual.
"The honesty and humanity with which these controversial themes are treated makes for attractive reading."--Kirkus Reviews
"Thought-provoking."--Rocky Mountain News
"Makes for fascinating reading."--The Human Quest
"Twenty professional philosophers tell how they combine intellectual rigor with religious commitment....The honesty and humanity with which these controversial themes are treated makes for attractive reading."--Kirkus Reviews
"The public image of contemporary philosophers is that their personal stories are all stories of losing faith or of never having had it. The stories in this volume shatter the image. They are stories by contemporary philosophers--many of them world-renowned--of coming to faith or returning, or of enduring in faith. The spiritual journeys narrated were never easy: there's a lot of suffering and desperation here, and perplexity. But after surprising turns they
open to the joy of knowing God and discovering how to serve God on the way. It's a remarkable collection. Any assessment of either contemporary philosophy or spirituality will have to take account of the examples it gives of faith and philosophical reflection joined in life."--Nicholas Wolterstorff,
"Challenging. It shows that American Christian philosophers demand evidence and argument."--The Economist
"...the book is honest, winsome, and quite moving. It provides us with a refreshing backdrop to some of the most gifted theistic thinkers of our time.God and the Philosophers is worthwhile reading."--The Review of Metaphysics