ST504: History of Philosophy and Christian Thought. 3 hours Tuesdays: 1:00-3:55 pm

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1 ST504: History of Philosophy and Christian Thought. 3 hours Tuesdays: 1:00-3:55 pm Contact Information Prof.: Bruce Baugus Office Phone: (x696) Office: Chapel Annex Hours: Wed. 9 am-4 pm; by appointment; and generally whenever my door is open TA: Ben Kappers Catalog Course Description A critical, historical survey of the development of the main schools of philosophy and the principal developments in Christian doctrine and thought. After a brief introduction to philosophical thinking, the course concentrates on philosophical movements from Heraclitus to contemporary existentialism. Each school of thought is evaluated from a distinctively Reformed perspective. Expanded Description and Course Objectives Philosophy is inescapable and the relationship between philosophy and Christian thought, life, and ministry is varied and complex. The purpose of this course (1) is to familiarize students with some of the most significant philosophical contributions, influences, and challenges to Christian thought. Along the way we will (2) critique the various philosophical methods and proposals discussed in class from an explicitly biblical and Reformed point of view, (3) attempting to discern both beneficial intellectual resources for and the implicit and explicit dangers to Christianity, considering how to appropriate the former while avoiding errors and repudiating the latter. Textbooks Colin Brown, Christianity & Western Thought, vol. 1 only (Downers Grove: InterVarsity Press, 1990) James C. Livingston, Modern Christian Thought, 2 nd ed., vols. 1 & 2 (Minneapolis: Fortress Press, 2006) James K. A. Smith, Who s Afraid of Postmodernism? (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2006) Homemade Reader (readings on reserve in library) Assignments Your primary assignment is to complete all assigned readings, attend each lecture, and be prepared to contribute to each discussion. Accountability will come in the form of reading reports, two in-class exams, and one take-home exam. Reading Reports You will submit a reading report each week that must include a single, concise, one-paragraph summary of each assigned chapter, article, or passage. Your grade for this assignment will consist of two factors: an accumulative P/F portion for each paragraph based on whether you have adequately summarized the reading; several reading reports (about five) will be chosen, unannounced and at random, over the course of the semester. These will be graded on a regular grading scale on the overall quality of the summary of the topic of the assigned reading. In-class Exams The two in-class exams will cover course content including assigned readings, class lectures, and class discussions. They will consist primarily of objective and short answer type questions, though a few short essay questions are possible. Take-Home Exam The take-home Exam will be comprehensive and consist of several longer, analytic and synthetic essay questions on major themes in the course. There will be an element of choice built into the exam.

2 Course Grade Reading Reports 20% P/F 10% Sample 10% In class Exams Midterm 25% Final 25% Take-home 30% Total 100%

3 COURSE SCHEDULE Date Topic Assignments Due August 20 Introduction to Philosophy 22 Philosophy and Theology PUT, ix-xxv Scripture and Philosophy Warnings Against Engagement With A Hebrew Philosophy? 27 Introduction to Platonic Philosophy PUT, 1-37 Plato and Socrates Dialogues Dualism Recollection and Innate Ideas 29 Discussion of Plato PR, 1-38 Republic: The Cave Timeus: Creation Platonic Tradition PUT, Stoicism Cicero Neoplatonism Plotinus Emanation Hierarchy of being Ascent of the soul Proclus on evil Pseudo-Dionysius on ascending to God September 3 Introduction to Aristotle PUT, Method of Inquiry On Definition 5 Discuss Aristotle PR, Categories on Substance and its Predicates Physics and Fourfold Causality Metaphysics and the case for an Unmoved Mover Ethics 10 Christian Philosophy to Augustine Handout Jewish encounter with Greek Philosophy Christian encounter with Greek Philosophy Gnosticism 12 The Augustinian Worldview Discussion of Augustine On Christian Teaching 17 From Augustine to Thomas Aquinas PUT, Boethius, The Rise of Scholasticism, and Anselm PR, Positive and Negative Theology Greatest Possible Being Ontological Argument

4 24 Thomas and Thomism 26 Discussion of Thomas PUT, Five Ways PR, Natural and Supranatural Theology Analogical Language, Definition, and Hierarchy of Being Natural Law Transubstantiation October 1 Scotus and Ockham Handout 3 Discussion of Scotism and Nominalism PUT, Protestant Philosophy: Modified Aristotelianism(s) Handout Luther and Melanchthon Reformed Scholasticism Petrus Ramus 8 & 10 Reading Week 15 MIDTERM EXAM 17 Rise of Modernity PUT, ; MCT, 1-11 Cartesian Rationalism PR, Lockean Empiricism MCT, 14-15, 18-24; PR, German Rationalism MCT, Hume MCT, 40, 49-58; PR, Kant PUT, ; MCT, 58-69; PR, Romanticism & Schleiermacher MCT, 83-86, Idealism and Hegel PUT, ; MCT, , ; PR, Left and Right Wing Hegelians Process Theology MCT2, , November 5 Post Enlightenment Critique of Christianity MCT, , Discussion of Strauss, Feuerbach, Nietzsche, Freud, and Marx Marx and Liberation Theology MCT2, Naturalism, Historical Positivism, and Princeton MCT, Existentialism PUT, ; MCT2, Kierkegaard MCT, ; PR, Barth & Brunner, Tillich, Bultmann MCT2, 62-84, Phenomenology: Heideggar Handout; PR, Hermeneutics Handout Dilthey PR, Gadamer MCT2, ; PR, Ricoeur 21 Analytic Philosophy & Positivism Handout Flew PR, Wittgenstein PR, ; MCT2, Reformed Epsitemology MCT2,

5 26 Postmodernism PUT, ; Handout; Whose Afraid of Postmodernism? 28 Thanksgiving December Final Exam (8:30-11:30)

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