Third Dialogue on the Nature of Love

*In light of Valentine’s Day, a third dialogue on the nature of love. The first can be read here and the second here. All characters and events are fictional, and are used to convey philosophical arguments. My own personal views are not necessarily reflected by the views of any characters or statements herein; the dialogue is just meant to work out and develop some thoughts.

Thomas: So do we now understand what love is?

Reuben: I think we have a start.

Thomas: What more would you want to say? We have agreed that love is the active will for the good of the other, and that the emotions follow the will, but that the emotions also feed the will, and the will is directed towards certain emotions.

Reuben: I agree that this is one account of love. But I wonder if it is the whole of love?

Thomas: What could there be beyond this?

Reuben: Before I answer that, I have another question.

Thomas: Ask it!

Reuben: We said much earlier that love cannot be a desire, since desire results from some need or incompleteness within ourselves, and hence to desire another must ultimately be selfish, merely wanting to use the person as a means to an end of our own emotional fulfillment.

Thomas: We did indeed say this.

Reuben: But must it be true that all desire as such results from some need or incompleteness within us? Continue reading

Recommended Links: 9/6/16

More links to articles that I’ve been reading and highly recommend!

Divine Impassibility and Our Suffering God. An extremely interesting theological/philosophical article about the doctrine of divine impassibility, and how it relates to other important theological issues such as christology and the trinity.

A difficulty for Craig’s kalam cosmological argument? The latest post from Ed Feser about William Lane Craig’s version of the kalam cosmological argument.

Pro-Nicene Theology. A brief post from Zondervan Academic about divine simplicity.

Materialism Denigrates Matter. An interesting, and certainly controversial, short article about the results of a materialistic worldview.

How to Think Like Shakespeare. A great article about education.

Finally, since Mother Teresa was officially canonized this week, a few articles concerning her and the process of canonization:

Jesus Visits Town, Trailing Controversy: If the mainstream media covered Jesus the way it covered Mother Teresa (satire).

Mother Teresa to become saint amid criticism over miracles and missionaries.

When Mother Teresa Came to Washington (I haven’t personally finished reading this one yet).

*Note: I do not necessarily agree with, either in part or in whole, any of the articles, or authors thereof, listed above. They are just articles I found interesting to read and think about, and thought might be worth sharing.

Update: New Blog Features

I should have a new, actual post out sometime within the next week. Until then, I’ve added several new features to the blog that I thought I’d bring attention to.

First, I have added a new page called “Post Directory.” This page contains links to posts on my blog that are organized by series, to make finding specific posts easier. You can access it via the menu above, or by clicking here.

Second, I’ve added a blogroll, a list of links to high quality blogs that I regularly follow and highly recommend. If you look on the right hand side of the page and scroll down, you’ll see the blogroll underneath Archives.

Both of these new features will be updated regularly!

Recommended Links: 8/20/16

As I wrote in my personal update,  I’m busy settling in at school so I haven’t had much time to write. So here are a few links from other blogs that I’ve been reading and would recommend. I’ll return to full length posts hopefully sometime in the next few weeks.

Does the Law of Inertia Disprove the Argument from Motion? via Last Eden. This is a post by philosopher Eve Keneinan about inertia and Aquinas’s First Way. Newton’s Laws are often a common objection to the argument from motion; Ed Feser has responded to this objection in his books The Last Superstition and Aquinas, and more comprehensively in his essay Existential Inertia and the Five Ways. Eve offers an excellent treatment of this topic in a concise post.

A Pilgrim’s Regress: George John Romanes and the Search for Rational Faith. An interesting article about the journey to faith of George John Romanes.

Is it Obvious that God is not a Being Among Beings? A post in a series of posts between several philosophers about the nature of God, specifically concerning the views of Classical Theism and Theistic Personalism.

On Three Problems of Divine Simplicity by philosopher Andrew Pruss. An article whose title is pretty self explanatory.

The Fittingness of Evolutionary Creation. This is an article on a website the entirety of which is pretty unique and interesting, as its title displays: Thomistic Evolution.

Transubstantiation and Reason. An article about the philosophy of the Catholic doctrine of Transubstantiation.

*Note: I do not necessarily agree with, either in part or in whole, any of the articles, or authors thereof, listed above. They are just articles I found interesting to read and think about, and thought might be worth sharing.

 

 

 

Personal Update: Starting School

I don’t usually write much personal stuff on this blog, but tomorrow morning I will be moving across the country, from Tennessee to California, to start college. I’ve lived my entire life in the beautiful city of Chattanooga, and I couldn’t possibly love it more; but I’m extremely excited to be starting this new adventure in my life, with all of the new opportunities and experiences it will bring. To all the friends, peers, teachers, and mentors who have helped me along the way, but most of all, to my family, without whom I would be absolutely nowhere: my utmost thanks and appreciation to you; I am so grateful for all you’ve done.

For the next few weeks I will be moving, settling in, getting used to things, participating in orientations, and starting classes. As such, I probably won’t be having a whole lot of time for much writing. I have tried over this summer to post at least once, but more often twice a week. I have absolutely loved the experience of researching and getting my thoughts down, and to those of you who have read, followed, and commented on/interacted with my posts, I am extremely grateful to you as well. I fully intend to keep writing on a regular basis once I get settled in. Until then, I may post a few shorter things, or post links to other articles which I recommend, but it’ll probably be a few weeks before I get back to full length articles.

Once I return to a regular writing basis, I plan to write series on the last three of Aquinas’s Five Ways, continue my Person of Jesus series, and I have a few other series planned on various philosophical/theological topics. If there is any topic in particular, or any question, about which you’d like me to write, I’d love to hear suggestions!

Until then, thanks again!

-Harrison

My summer reading list 2016

My (preliminary) planned summer reading list for Summer 2016. Many of these will be rereads, some will be completely new. I will be trying to write about as many of them as I can!

  • The collected works of C. S. Lewis (will hopefully be doing a pretty big blog series on these)
  • Scholastic Metaphysics by Edward Feser
  • Real Essentialism by David Oderberg
  • Jesus and the God of Israel by Richard Bauckham
  • Selected works of Fyodor Dostoyevsky
  • Selected works of Leo Tolstoy
  • Selected works of Victor Hugo
  • Confessions of St. Augustine
  • Pensees by Blaise Pascal
  • Selected works of G. K. Chesterton (most like Orthodoxy, Heretics, and The Everlasting Man)
  • Selected works of Timothy Keller (Prayer, Jesus the King, Generous Justice)
  • Justice by Michael Sandel (read most of this for an ethics class this past year, will hopefully be reading through the whole thing again to do a series of posts on politics and social ethics)

This list, of course, is still evolving and taking shape. And, like usual, I may not get through everything I want to read, but this is the plan!

-Harrison Jennings