Homepage » Lectures » Lecture 6

Lectures / Disk 6


Great Minds of the Western Intellectual Tradition (Part II, The Christian Age)
Featuring Various Professors

DISK 6.1 
Lecture 13: Introduction/ Caryf
What this introduction deals with is the Western tradition which comes from Athens and Jerusalem and the Biblical world of Moses and Jesus. These two worlds come together in the writings of the Church Fathers, representing the synthesis between the biblical faith and philosophical reason.

Lecture 14: Job and the Problem of Suffering/Cary
There is nothing like the biblical book of Job; it’s a unique book about an unusual relationship between Job and God. Job is a good man who suffers and pours his heart out to God complaining but then again is afraid to complain as he fears God, he is religious and obeys God. The structure of the Book of Job begins and ends with a prose narrative told like a folk tale whereas the in-between parts make up one of the greatest poems ever written.

Lecture 15: The Hebrew Bible and Covenantal History/Cary
The Hebrew bible is like the Book of Job; it focuses on faith rather than reason and the relationship between God and the People of Israel. This relationship gets its structure from the Convenent, a set of promises and commands that binds these two sides together.

Lecture 16 The synoptic Gospels – The Historical Jesus and the Kingdom of God/Cary
The synoptic Gospels of the New Testament are the Gospels of Mark, Mathew and Luke because they all share the same plot line summarized in a common ‘synopsis’, whereas the fourth gospel of John has a different plot line and a different focus on Jesus. In this lecture you will listen to research concerning the historical Jesus based on the synoptic gospels which are the key sources for this understanding.

Lecture 17: Paul – Justification by Faith/Cary
This lecture deals with Paul, the writer of the earliest writings in the New Testament. His writings were the first biblical writings predating the synoptic Gospels discussed in the previous lecture. Paul’s special mission was to preach Christ to non-Jews. Paul prepared the ‘doctrine of justification’ contrasting the life of Jews (they lived under the Law) to those who believed in Christ and lived ‘under grace’.

Lecture 18: Plotinus and Neo-Platonism/Cary
Plotinus and his writings are discussed in this lecture. He was the last great philosopher of pagan antiquity who saw the universe in terms of a deep underlying unity which he called the One. Learn about the divine Intellect (Nous) and the place of the human soul in the universe.

DISK 6.2 
Lecture 19: Augustine – Grace and Free Will/Cary
Augustine was a bishop and a Church Father; one of the leaders who helped formulate the basic doctrines of ancient Christianity. Augustine was a reader of Paul and Plotinus (two previous lectures) as he was important for the doctrine of ‘grace’ based on his interpretation of Paul. Augustine was an influential personality and perhaps the most important thinker of the time to combine biblical religion with spirituality (Plutonian, previous lecture).

Lecture 20: Aquinas and Christian Aristotelianism/Adams
Aquinas Thomas was the son of a south Italian noble family connected to the 13th century aristocracy of Western Europe. This lecture deals with Aquinas’ role in adapting Aristotle’s thought and philosophical method to the needs of the Christian philosophy and theology of his time. You will hear views on logic, motion, politics, legal thinking and more which Aquinas integrated in his work from Aristotle.

Lecture 21: Universals in Medieval Thought/Adams
This lecture discusses the relationship of names and things, the ‘problem of ‘universals’, a philosophical issue that has arisen in every crucial period questioning the relationship between names and things of various categories in which we tend to classify phenomena.

Lecture 22: Mysticism and Meister Eckhart/Cary
Professor Phillip discusses the many things that ‘Mysticism’ has meant through time. The four strands of mystical experience are examined along with the classical medieval mysticism and the original meaning of ‘mystic’. Echart’s identity mysticism is discussed; he was a 14th century priest who agrees with Plotinus (previous lecture) that the highest part of the soul is eternally identical with the divine One.

Lecture 23: Luther – Law and Gospel/Cary
Luther Martin was a German monk who started the Protestant Reformation. Luther used concepts from Paul and Augustine (previous lectures) and taught that we are justified by faith alone which means that we can receive the grace of God only by believing the Gospel of Christ and not by doing good works. A controversy broke out when the Pope tried to take the Gospel away from him and the Christians, leading to the break between the Roman church and those who saw things as Luther did.

Lecture 24: Calvin and Protestantism/Cary
Calvin was a French-born theologian and an important figure in the second generation of the Reformation. He was distinct from Luther and the Catholics as he was more critical of the Catholic emphasis on external sacraments. He believed that justification is something that happens once in life implying that anyone who has experienced justification is chosen by God to be saved.

<Back to Lectures>