16 October 2007

the analogy of being

A blog reader alerts me to a conference, to be held 4-6 April 2008 at the Pope John Paul II Cultural Center in Washington, DC: The Analogy of Being: A Theological Symposium, co-sponsored by the Dominican House of Studies. The conference subtitle is "Invention of the Anti-Christ or the Wisdom of God?" alluding to Barth's description of the analogia entis as "anti-Christ."

On this matter I'm far more inclined to agree with von Balthasar than Barth, yet there are substantive questions to debate here and the line-up of speakers is impressive: John Betz, Martin Bieler, Peter Casarella, Michael Hanby, David Bentley Hart, Reinhard Hütter, Bruce McCormack, Bruce Marshall, Richard Schenk OP, John Webster, and Thomas Joseph White OP.

Part of the issue here is the relation of God to creation. What is the relationship between created nature and God? Is there a likeness between God and his creation that is revelatory of who God is? Is there any knowledge of God available to the human person, apart from Christian revelation, in virtue of creation or is all knowledge of God graciously given to human beings uniquely in Christ? Or is creation itself "in Christ" from its inception and thus nature is always already graced?