Moving along the bookshelf
Yesterday I finally finished Msgr. Knox's The Hidden Stream
. I have to say, in summary, that this was one of my most enjoyable reads in years. For those who haven't read Knox (and I hadn't, before this), he's best described as a Catholic version of C. S. Lewis, except that theologically he's much better grounded and less impulsive. This text itself is sort of an introduction to Catholicism, but from more of a mid-twentiety-century 'pre-theologate' fashion, nearly the equivalent of a set of lessons in foundational theology. Thus, it's not especially profound on any level, but Knox (like Lewis) has a way of tossing out off-hand witticisms which are remarkably refreshing. Highly recommended for those new to theology.
I also put down St. Bonaventure's Hexaemeron: Collations on the Six Days
yesterday. I didn't finish it, but I got through nearly half the collations and decided to move on. It's great stuff, but dense. If you like your scholastic theology in mystico-exegetical form, Bonaventure's your man. I would classify the Hexaemeron
more as a work in mystical epistemology than metaphysics, which is surprising given the format. But all of Bonaventure's work revolves around the means by which the mind ascends to God from created things, and hence the epistemological question is always pivotal. I would recommend this work more as a text in spirituality than in systematic theology, but for those new to Bonaventure, the Itinerarium mentis
is probably a better start.
I also returned briefly to Avery Dulles' Models of Revelation
over the weekend, having read it once before. Years later, I find it at the same time more sensible and less compelling. I can appreciate more now, I think, the way in which Dulles' highlights the inadequacy of the fundamental 'models' which he reviews in Book I, while I have significantly less enthusiasm for his more positive contribution in Book II, the 'symbolic mediation' model, which probably turned more heads in the early 80s than it would turn today.
# posted by Jamie : 7:49 AM