What the Body Knows

Each spring a kind of anxious waiting sets in. I never catch it in the approach, but only after it has congealed into a distinct and concrete mood. Over the last several years, my family has suffered trauma in spring as regular as the change of the season: a life-threatening accident, a divorce, my father’s death, a relapse, heartbreak. Even as I have continued to deal with these events on a conscious level, my body always seems to greet spring in mid flinch. It’s as if grief... Read More

Boredom and the Possibility of Community

Several years ago, I had the privilege of serving as a Eucharistic minister in a small church community in upstate New York. I had come to the Episcopal Church as an adult after a childhood spent in evangelical congregations of varying degrees of fundamentalism. My mother was a converted Catholic and preferred the emphasis these churches placed on relationship over ritual. I came to liturgy later when I could no longer conjure my faith at will. I needed a discipline that was strong... Read More

Those Which were Possessed by Devils

Pop-culture, Demons and Philosophy Recently, I enlisted a friend to see The Conjuring with me. The movie claims to be based on real events, which seems to be a standard feature for these types of films, and depicts the haunting of a family upon moving into a new home with a grisly past, yet another fairly standard feature. The family enlists the help of self-proclaimed demonologists, Ed and Lorraine Warren, who nearly immediately confirm the affliction as having a demonic source.[1]... Read More

Can Philosophy Come Forth As Prophecy?

J. Aaron Simmons (aaron.simmons@furman.edu) – Department of Philosophy, Furman University Zachary Jolly (zach.jolly@furman.edu) – Department of Philosophy, Furman University In 1984 Alvin Plantinga’s landmark essay, “Advice to Christian Philosophers,” appeared in print in Faith and Philosophy. This widely celebrated essay can rightly be said to have crystallized the early gestures toward what has become known as contemporary “Christian Philosophy,” and stands... Read More

On Postmodern Epistemology: A Rejoinder to Hackett

J. Aaron Simmons Department of Philosophy Furman University aaron.simmons@furman.edu   I would like to begin this short rejoinder to Ed Hackett’s critique of my notion of postmodern kataphaticism by thanking him for his time and energy in responding to my short essay.  What follows is not at all intended to be conclusive, but simply one more move in a conversation that I hope will continue between Hackett and I, and many others, about the possibilities of determinate religion... Read More

The Relevance of Philosophy of Religion to Religious Studies: Of Gaps and Gratitude

By: J. Aaron Simmons (Department of Philosophy, Furman University), www.furman.edu/philosophy/simmons In 1996, William J. Wainwright edited a book entitled God, Philosophy, and Academic Culture: A Discussion between Scholars in the AAR and the APA.  That book features contributions from some of the most influential philosophers of religion and theologians in recent history: Nicholas Wolterstorff, Merold Westphal, Walter Lowe, Stephen Crites, Philip L. Quinn, C. Stephen Evans,... Read More