Sunday 25 February 2007

The Heythrop Journal

The new issue of The Heythrop Journal 48:2 (March 2007) includes some excellent material. I particularly enjoyed Benjamin D. Crowe’s article on “Nietzsche, the Cross, and the Nature of God,” Robert S. Heaney’s article, “Towards the Possibility of Impassibilist Pastoral Care,” and Richard S. Briggs’ review article, “Perspectives on Scripture: Its Status and Purpose” (a discussion of the recent books on Scripture by John Webster, N. T. Wright, Telford Work and Brenda Watson).

But the most interesting essay is Bruce Milem, “Four Theories of Negative Theology.” Milem distinguishes between the following four kinds of negative theology: “The first theory, which I call the metaphysical theory, grounds negative theology in God’s role as the cause of all. The second theory interprets negative theology as an expression of desire for something unknown. The third theory justifies negative theology on the basis of an extraordinary or mystical experience. The fourth theory explains negative theology as an act of renunciation motivated by concern about self-interest in one’s devotion to God.” Milem thus concludes his discussion by saying: “If negative theology as a linguistic practice has no rationale or guiding logic, then no explanation or theory of it can be given.”


Sam Charles Norton said...

Curious. Does he discuss Denys Turner's work, and if so, in which category is Turner placed?

Ben Myers said...

Yes, he discusses Denys Turner's work in detail, and he puts Turner in his first category ("the metaphysical theory").

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