2011-12 Catalog

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Offering Description

In Our Image: Readings in the Philosophy of Religion


Spring 2012 quarter

Andrew Reece classical art and literature
Fields of Study
philosophy and religious studies
Preparatory for studies or careers in
philosophy, religious studies, and theology.

Can we know God?  Or, for that matter, does such a being exist, and, if so, how do we relate to it (or Her, or Him)?  What is the distinction between faith and reason?  Between philosophy and theology?  Morality and religion?  How can one live a life of intellectual and moral integrity and a life of faith?  Do the two imply one another, or are they in conflict?  These are the central questions of this program, and in our inquiry we will raise many more, about belief, dogma, doubt, divinity, language, ritual, and meaning-making.  Our ability to raise, refine, and resolve these questions will be strengthened by our study of classic texts in the philosophy of religion from authors including Anselm, Aquinas, Descartes, Spinoza, Kant, Hegel, Kierkegaard, Martin Buber, and Paul Tillich. 

This program was originally planned as the third quarter of the In Our Image program, which was a study of the Christian movement from its origins in Judaism and Greco-Roman culture to the time of Dante.  Partly for that reason, the authors selected are Christian and Jewish; however, this is a study not of apologetic theology but of philosophy of religion.  That is, the theories we will encounter do not necessarily defend a particular religious perspective, nor do they demand from readers extensive familiarity with scripture.  The points of view they share are not limited to those who share their faiths.

Reading, discussion, and writing will be our sole modes of inquiry, and we will go about them with a level of seriousness and intensity that cannot be understated.  Students will participate in book seminars and writing seminars on every text, and they will respond to every text in essays.  Peer review and revision will also be a significant component of our work together.      

Online Learning
Enhanced Online Learning
Greener Store
Offered During

Program Revisions

Date Revision
February 13th, 2012 New offering added.