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Archive for the ‘Christian philosophy’ Category

philosophy-james-spiegel

James Spiegel. Philosophy.  Phillipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing, July 11th, 2014. 48 pp.

5 out of 5

The author James Spiegel is a Christian and a professor of philosophy and religion at Taylor University.  I’m glad that the editors and publishers for the Faithful Learning Series picked a guy qualified to write this booklet on a Christian view of philosophy as an academic discipline.  Spiegel surveys how the trajectory of philosophy has shifted in recent historical context starting with Christian philosopher Alvin Plantinga.  Plantinga and other Christians philosophers like him have contributed not only to the defense of the faith but even in the field of philosophy itself.  The change in the field of philosophy is quite radical as the author noted that not too long ago the philosophy of Positivism was assumed by society at large to be philosophically sound and physicalism was in vogue.  Spiegel’s work gives readers a quick and helpful survey on epistemology, philosophy of mind, philosophy of religion and moral theory.  In what follows below I will share what I found helpful and then some words of constructive criticisms.

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History of Western Philosophy John Frame

John Frame. A History of Western Philosophy and Theology.  Phillipsburg, NJ: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing, October 23rd, 2015. 864 pp.

This year (2015) is one of John Frame’s most productive years in terms of the quantity and quality of books published.  For many the most anticipated book among them is probably A History of Western Philosophy and Theology.  The following is my review of this book.

If there is anyone today that is qualified to give a biblical evaluation and exposition of Western philosophy and how it shapes theology it would be John Frame.  This book is the result of the author’s experience with teaching and writing on philosophy, theology and apologetics over the last few decades.  Like other works by Frame, this work reflects his commitment to Scripture and the Christian worldview.  At the same time Frame is knowledgeable of philosophy.  Frame is a great model of a Christian scholar:  He is charitable but does not shy away from refuting error.  All this contribute towards making this work a great book.

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Superheroes The Best of Philosophy and Pop Culture Edited by William Irwin

Get it for free on KINDLE

Review: This is a neat kindle book put out by the publishers Blackwell.  I typically think of their academic books that they published but apparently they have a series on Philosophy and Pop Culture.  In this book various contributors explore how superheroes are complex characters that have become the myths of our times.  In the introduction the book notes that while philosophers specialize in nuance articulation of philosophy often those who are unfamiliar with the more technical expression of philosophy “gets” their philosophy through the more familiar medium of movies, comics, music and video games.  This is a good book for those not as familiar with philosophy to see how philosophy is put in action; it is also a good book for those who are naïve not to see that there are worldview undercurrents in popular culture and entertainment to see that comics and films about superhero are not “value-free” or done in a vacuum apart from a worldview.  I think those who do enjoy philosophy will also find this book interesting in showing examples of various philosophy and isms displayed in the comics.  I think the book is insightful.  For instance I enjoyed the discussion about Captain America and the virtue of humility.  I especially enjoyed the chapter on the discussion of why Batman doesn’t kill Joker.  I admit it has also made me wanting more and seeing some of the discussion has made me see how various philosophies are inadequate; but to the end that this book is an exploration of philosophies and superheroes this book accomplished it’s goal.

Get it for free on KINDLE

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I just posted a few minutes ago but this is too good not to share right now!

Redeeming Philosophy A God-Centered Approach to the Big Questions

Dr. Vern Poythress of Westminster Theological Seminary has just had his book Redeeming Philosophy published just a few weeks ago last month.  Apparently he has made this book available for free online as a PDF!

You can download the file if you click HERE.

Here’s the book’s description from the publisher’s website:

Who am I? Why am I here? Where do I find meaning?

Life is full of big questions. The study of philosophy seeks to answer such questions. In his latest book, prolific author Vern Poythress investigates the foundations and limitations of Western philosophy, sketching a distinctly Christian approach to answering basic questions about the nature of humanity, the existence of God, the search for meaning, and the basis for morality.

For Christians eager to engage with the timeless philosophical issues that have perplexed men and women for millennia, this is the place to begin.

Here is the table of content:

Table of Contents

Part 1: Basic Issues in Exploring Big Questions

  1. The Big Questions about Life
  2. The Bible as a Resource
  3. Opposite Approaches to Philosophy

Part 2: Metaphysics: What Is There?

  1. Inadequate Philosophies
  2. Christian Metaphysics

Part 3: Perspectives

  1. Introducing Perspectives
  2. Multiperspectivalism
  3. Perspectives on God
  4. Perspectives on the World
  5. Perspectives through Language
  6. Implications for Theology

Part 4: Examples of Metaphysical Analysis

  1. Metaphysics of an Apple
  2. Metaphysics of Walking
  3. Metaphysics of a Bookmark
  4. Perspectives in Combination

Part 5: Other Subdivisions of Philosophy

  1. Ethics
  2. Epistemology
  3. The Soul, the Mind, and Psychology
  4. Logic
  5. Aesthetics
  6. Specialized Branches of Philosophy

Part 6: Interacting with Defective Philosophies

  1. The Challenge of Philosophies
  2. Immanuel Kant
  3. Edmund Husserl
  4. Analytic Philosophy

Appendix A: Cosmonomic Philosophy
Appendix B: Perspectives on the Trinity
Appendix C: The Structure of a Bookmark

 

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