Reasoning about the existence of God tonight ?

Back in my Caesar salad days, I used to ham it up on the old blog almost every waking slumber.  My forte (whether by music, poetry or pure verbiage) having always been improv - "uniquely suited" (as they say) to extensive bloggification on all matters pertinent and impertinent - I was having a field day every night.

Oh well, enough about that.  I've been reading - trying to read - an extremely dense and philosophically technical book by Denys Turner, titled Faith, Reason and the Existence of God (Cambridge UP, 2004).  It's one heck of a meatloaf.

Turner is defending against an old traditional challenge to St. Thomas Aquinas.  He's too rational, he's too philosophical : and as such, he veers too far toward the "natural", the secular, the humanist, the agnostickal, the pantheist, etc.  Turner is also challenging those contemporary theologians who have basically surrendered any rational argument for theism, on behalf of an interpretation of "negative theology", apophaticism, & so forth, which disallows rational argument on behalf of mystical (post-rational?) faith.

I'm not doing Turner justice, and am bowdlerizing & totally messing up what this extremely logically assiduous scholar engage is trying to say.  Nevertheless, I'm on his side.

After working through, very carefully, the alternative mentalities of Kant, Bertrand Russell ("the world is just a fact") and a few other prominent agnostics, Turner comes around to defending, very obliquely, very elegantly, the logic of Aquinas, regarding the one most basic & most profound children's question at the heart of philosophy and religion : Why is there anything, rather than nothing?

Sit back and think about it, quietly, for a while.  La vida es sueno.

There is no simple "positively theological" answer to this basic question, as Turner makes clear.  Negative theology, "apophaticism", is inherent in our reasoning itself : because we know we cannot explain how God has produced this intricate dream-cosmos.  The question ends in wonder.

Which leads Turner, and Aquinas (and me) back to the delicate distinctions of the Chalcedonian creed.  We know God only through her manifestation as the conjunction of differences : the human-divine Person... "without separation, without confusion..."

Love manifest as infinite mystery, gift, harmony... and, in the end (at the center of interplanetary melody) - victory, glory, law, fulfillment, redemption.  Star of Redemption... promised land, "kingdom of heaven".

Don't ask me to explain.  Bird has left the cage.

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