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On the Mystery: Discerning Divinity in Process [Paperback]

By Catherine Keller, J. David Spurlock (Compiler), J. David Spurlock (Compiler), Neil Gaiman (Contributor), Paul Chadwick (Contributor), Eric Myott (Contributor) & Tim Ohr
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Item Number 69245  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   208
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 8.58" Width: 5.7" Height: 0.54"
Weight:   0.7 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Jan 1, 2008
Publisher   AUGSBURG FORTRESS PUB. #99
ISBN  0800662768  
EAN  9780800662769  


Availability  0 units.


Item Description...
Overview
With immediate impact and deep creativity, Catherine Keller offers this brief and unconventional introduction to theological thinking, especially as recast by process thought. Keller takes up theology itself as a quest for religious authenticity. Through a marvelous combination of brilliant writing, story, reflection, and unabashed questioning of old shibboleths, Keller redeems theology from its dry and predictable categories to reveal what has always been at the heart of the theological enterprise: a personal search for intellectually honest and credible ways of making sense of the loving mystery that encompasses even our confounding times.

Publishers Description
With immediate impact and deep creativity, Catherine Keller offers this brief and unconventional introduction to theological thinking, especially as recast by process thought. Keller takes up theology itself as a quest for religious authenticity. Through a marvelous combination of brilliant writing, story, reflection, and unabashed questioning of old shibboleths, Keller redeems theology from its dry and predictable categories to reveal what has always been at the heart of the theological enterprise: a personal search for intellectually honest and credible ways of making sense of the loving mystery that encompasses even our confounding times.

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More About Catherine Keller, J. David Spurlock, J. David Spurlock, Neil Gaiman, Paul Chadwick, Eric Myott & Tim Ohr

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Catherine Keller is a leading contemporary theologian. She is Professor of Constructive Theology at Drew University, USA, and author of The Face of the Deep.

Laurel C. Schneider works on multiplicity theory and is author of Beyond Monotheism. She is Professor of Theology, Ethics, and Culture at Chicago Theological Seminary, USA.



Catherine Keller currently resides in the state of New Jersey. Catherine Keller was born in 1953 and has an academic affiliation as follows - Theological School, Drew University Drew University, USA Drew Universi.

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Product Categories
1Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Christian Living > General   [31520  similar products]
2Books > Subjects > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity > Theology > Fundamentalism   [265  similar products]
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Reviews - What do our customers think?
A good book but a difficult read.  May 27, 2010
Many fine concepts are pursued in this book. The author, however, writes in a most difficult style to read. She uses many words with somewhat special definitions. It would be great if someone would translate this fine book into readily understandable English!
 
beautiful but flawed  Apr 7, 2010
I started out loving this book. Some passages moved me to tears they were so full of passion and insight. The chapter "Pilate's Shrug" was easily worth the price of the book. The author has a grasp of Whitehead's concept of how God lures the creative force of the universe into existence as specific entities which are related to each other and to God, though I think she might infer that means something about the relationship between people as well. She is able to apply this perspective to verse after verse in a way that brings new understanding to the Testaments. Reading this book was a valuable experience and I am grateful to Ms. Keller.

I've tried to understand Process Philosophy/Theology for decades. One of the difficulties is that A.N.Whitehead covered so much ground in his writings that he left a lot unsaid. In my understanding of his theology, God is an entity that never achieves final completion and is thereby outside time. The "forms" of all things that are possible are presented by God to the emerging entities in the physical world as possibilities. Every entity that does come into existence in the real world is accepted into God's perception. In this way, the world dependent on God for its existence. In Whitehead's metaphysics, the actual entities blink in and out of existence so they rely on God's timeless existence to provide them the history that allows them to exhibit continuity. This is one of his proofs of the existence of God. God is likewise dependent on the actual entities of the world to provide him consciousness since thought must be thought of something rather than nothing. Observation leads to the conclusion that there is a value system in how actuality is drawn into existence by God. The main values are novelty, diversity and intensity.

If my understanding is correct, there are a lot of big questions about what kind of ethical system can be constructed from this description of reality, what consciousness God has, and what is the raw creativity that God draws into existence. Also what kind of life after death is possible. Ms Keller deals very well with the idea that a process God is not omnipotent. Her description of life after death seems to assume we will still have the sensations we had as actual creatures and our continued existence in God will be either heaven or hell depending on how much we enjoy each other's company. In comparison to the rest of the book, I found that portion very weak. I was hoping she would extend Whitehead's work or fill in some of the blanks in other areas but she does not.

The most troubling aspect of this book for me was the author's assumptions that corporations are all greedy, Western civilization is built on worship of power and the Southern Baptist's opposition to greenhouse gas taxes is wrong. I think her unsupported opinions are the kind of absolutes she says her "third way" avoids. I ended up feeling the book was somewhere between a serious work of theology and a political tract from a liberal activist church.
 
Clear and perceptive  Mar 30, 2010
Catherine Keller has written a book free of the theological jargon that usually accompanies such work. She speaks clearly to the freeing of reality from the verbal and cultural matrix in which it has been imbedded--that matrix is often permeated with the racial, gender, and chauvinistic biases that distort truth or make it over in the shape of the original structures. Keller makes de-construction a method that renews and saves what has become stale and outmoded as time has passed the cultural matrices and structure by. Once freed, reality, divinity, nature, and humanity can reveal the depths which are in movement, as are all living beings. Process is what stops at death; process is the stuff of life.
 
Explore theology as relevant and creative  Mar 10, 2009
To hell with systematic theology. It might be interesting historically, but it's not interesting personally. This is where Catherine Keller comes in.

She writes creatively, intensely, intentionally, and intelligently. Reading her theology is like reading a fine novel. She wants you to explore your whole life, not just your detached idea of God. Finally, we have theology that challenges academics just as much as it does laypersons.

Keller isn't reviewing old doctrines (though they all get creatively covered), and neither do I consider this "Process Theology 101". Keller certainly stands strong in the process tradition, but this is no boring overview. "On The Mystery" is not a book to simply give you information. It wants to open your mind and heart to new realities.

So, you should get it.
 
For Honest Seekers  Sep 19, 2008
Catherine Keller has long been one of the most brilliant and complex theologians of the current generation of post-modern thinkers. This book offers some of her best insights and guidance for anyone interested in learning to think theologically.

A great guide to what it means to speak of God with love and care and profound attention to and appreciation for life. Written with grace, it offers confidence in the journey for those who prefer open-ended understandings to constricting--and self-deluding---certainties. It opens us to the divine mystery as a great and wonderful adventure.
 

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