The One, the Three and the Many

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Cambridge University Press, Jul 29, 1993 - Religion - 248 pages
This study, which is based on the 1992 Bampton Lectures delivered in the University of Oxford offers a theological analysis of and response to the modern world, and is at once a theology of culture and of creation. In the first half of the book, Professor Gunton expounds some of the distinctive and often contradictory features of modern culture. It is contended that the difficulties arise from inadequacies in the way both social and wordly beings are conceived, but that far from being unique modern culture here reflects similar inadequacies in ancient thought. The distinctive pathos of modernity is to be found in one unique feature, namely the displacement of God that is a mark of all realms of life. The roots of the problem are sought beyond the Enlightenment, where they are often located, in the combination of Platonism and Christian theology which dominated mediaeval Christian thought. At the heart of the matter is a deficient, because inadequately trinitarian, understanding of creation and creation's God. The second half of the book develops a theory of trinitarian transcendentals, whereby the relations between God and the world, and with it the distinctive being of the world - both personal and impersonal - can be conceived. The theology of createdness which results gives due weight to both the universal and the particular, both society and the individual.
 

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Contents

From Heraclitus to Havel The problem of the one and the many in modern life and thought
11
2 Modernity as disengagement
13
3 The one and the many
16
4 The concept of God
22
5 Modernity as the displacement of God
28
6 The pathos of the modern condition
34
7 Conclusion
37
The disappearing other The problem of the particular in modern life and thought
41
The universal and the particular Towards a theology of meaning and truth 1 Foundationalism and rationality
129
2 The one as transcendental
136
3 The open transcendental
141
4 Trinitarian transcendentals
149
Through whom and in whom Towards a theology of relatedness
155
2 Economy
157
3 Perichoresis
163
4 An analogical exploration
166

2 Plato
46
3 The Wests double mind
51
freedom
61
the aesthetic
66
6 A pattern of displacement
71
A plea for the present The problem of relatedness in modern life and thought
74
2 Christianitys false eternity
80
3 Modernitys false temporality
85
4 The displacement of eschatology
89
5 Gnosticism renewed
94
The rootless will The problem of meaning and truth in modern life and thought
101
2 Protagoras today
106
3 The fragmentation of culture
112
4 The origins of the rootless will
119
5 The shape of modernity
123
5 The heart of the problem
173
6 Christological conclusion
178
The Lord who is the Spirit Towards a theology of the particular
180
2 The problem of substantiality
188
3 Of particulars
196
4 The lord and giver of being
204
The triune Lord Towards a theology of the one and the many
210
2 Community
214
3 Sociality
219
4 Sociality in context
223
5 Conclusion
229
Bibliography
232
Index
241
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