Swinburne Evolved

We had Richard Swinburne in town on Wed, offering an interesting seminar paper, the stated thesis of which was ‘it is impossible to offer scientific explanation of the evolution of humanity’ – he did pause to reassure us that he is very happy with a (neo-)Darwinian account of evolution by natural selection, &c., to account for speciation. So why the problem? The basic argument relied on a particular take on the philosophy of science. We may usefully divide properties/events into ‘physical’ and ‘mental’, according to Swinburne, and science necessarily deals with only physical properties/events. (He defined an event as ‘a substance having a particular property at a particular time’.) However, what it is to...

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Bodies and the Body

Yesterday we managed to divert both Cyril O’Regan, Huisking Professor of Theology at Notre Dame, and Matthew Levering of Ave Maria University to St Andrews to give us papers. In the morning Prof O’Regan explored von Balthasar’s apocalyptic trinitarianism, which helped me to understand why Halden has thought McCormack’s ideas echo Balthasar. In the afternoon, Dr Levering gave us a paper soon to be published in Pro Ecclesia on the theological interpretation of Scripture, a topic we talk a lot about in St Andrews. Levering explored proposals from O’Collins and from the Princeton Scripture Project before giving us his own account of what theological interpretation ought to look like. It was good stuff. One point got me thinking, however....

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Ben Witherington in St Andrews

‘The School of Divinity presents a special series of open lectures byProfessor Ben Witherington (Asbury Seminary, Lexington, KY) Oral Texts and Rhetorical Contexts: Rethinking the Nature of the New Testament (Monday 14th Jan 2-3.30) Will the Real Beloved Disciple Please Rise Up? The Historical Figure of the Beloved Disciple in the Gospel of John (Tues 15th Jan, 2-3.30) Did the Canon Misfire? Rethinking Recent Rethinking about the Canon (Thurs 17th Jan 2-3.30)’ I shall have to miss the first of these, unfortunately, unless I can cancel a long-standing engagement in the south of England, but I’m looking forward to the rest. Ben is a fairly regular visitor to St Andrews, and always worth hearing.

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