"Philosophers Who Believe: The Spiritual Journey Of 11 Leading Thinkers," edited by Kelly James Clark (InterVarsity, 340 pp., $24.99, hardcover). Reviewed by Arthur Holmes, professor-at-large at Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois.
In his CHRISTIANITY TODAY editorial entitled "Our Shackled Scholars" (Nov. 22, 1993), Nathan Hatch cites Christian activity in philosophy as an exception to the anti-intellectualism that threatens evangelical scholarship today. But as "Philosophers Who Believe" indicates, there is more to philosophy than meets the mind.
Kelly James Clark, a Calvin College philosopher who serves as editor of this work, notes that "although Christian philosophers have attained to the highest scholarly level in their discipline, little attention has been paid to the actual generation, development and sustenance of their beliefs." This volume, however, attempts to alter the balance as 11 influential Christian philosophers present autobiographies of their respective spiritual journeys.
They represent Presbyterian, Christian Reformed, Episcopal, and Roman Catholic traditions—that span itself is an index to the breadth calf the movement. They teach at the University of Calgary, at Claremont, Loyola Marymount, Maryland, Notre Dame, Oxford, Pittsburgh, Toronto, and Yale. (Others could be named at Cornell, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Syracuse, USA, etc.) Six of them, by their own accounts, are adult converts who, like Justin Martyr, were philosophers before they became Christians. The most familiar name outside of professional philosophy is Mortimer Adler, formerly of the University of Chicago, who tells how he became a believer ten years ago. It was not just an intellectual conversion.
Their stories differ greatly. Some were ...1
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