[MD] What's wrong with "a personal God"?

Ron Kulp xacto at rocketmail.com
Thu Mar 24 00:04:05 PDT 2016

"Some personalists are idealists, believing that reality is constituted by consciousness, while others claim to be realist philosophers and argue that the natural order is created by God independently of human consciousness. For taxonomic convenience, the many strains of personalism can be grouped into two fundamental categories: personalism in a strict sense and personalism in a broader sense. "-Stanford 

"As a philosophical school, personalism draws its foundations from human reason and experience, though historically personalism has nearly always been attached to Biblical theism. von Balthasar suggests that “Without the biblical background it [personalism] is inconceivable.” Yet while most personalists are theists, belief in God is not necessary to all personalist philosophies, and some profess an atheist personalism."-Stanford 

> On Mar 23, 2016, at 1:52 PM, John Carl <ridgecoyote at gmail.com> wrote:
> John, I brought up the issue of Personalism a while back in MD, and
> honestly, before we get into what you mean by "God", I think we ought to
> talk about what we mean by "Personal".  I got interested in the discussion
> of Personalism in the general  way through reading Auxier's commentary on
> James's Personalism, which he (James) largely derived from Bowden Parker
> Bowne, if Auxier's correct (and he usually is ;)   It's a fascinating
> philosophical discussion and one that modernist-analytic philosophy (SOM)
> tends to ignore, being that it is a form of Idealism and god knows who we
> let in if we open THAT door....
> but on the other hand, without an account of the personal, all science;
> all modern education, flounders in such abyssi as "mind/body" and
> "Self/Other" logical problems.
> before  we can personalize God, God must personalize us, or we have no
> basis for standing.  I believe this can be a rational process, but it MUST
> be a process.  That is, Personality is a story - a process in time.  The
> god of the bible is certainly that, first and foremost - IAM he that knew
> your fathers, that brought you out of the land of bondage, etc.  The person
> is rooted in history but the now is always a choice.
> Thanks for continuing the conversation,
> John
> On Tue, Mar 22, 2016 at 12:16 PM, John McConnell <jlmcconnell at bellsouth.net>
> wrote:
>> Friends,
>> In a number of sources which otherwise affirm a spiritual reality or a
>> concept analogous to the way Christians conceive of God, most are vehement
>> in their denial a “personal God”, which most equate with an
>> “anthropomorphic” or “sectarian” God.  Although such may often be the case,
>> why, on the face of it, do scholars reject the notion of a “personal God”?
>> Why can’t God choose to be “personal”?  Why is the affirmation of a
>> “personal God” considered by MOQ fundamentalists to be a “limitation” or
>> “definition” of God?  How does being “personal” (not “personified”) violate
>> God’s the attributes of ineffable, indefinable, etc., ascribed to Dynamic
>> Quality?  What could be less “effable” and “definable” and “limited” than
>> the pure Essence of Being of Thomas Aquinas?  I’m really puzzled by this.
>> Can you help?
>> Many thanks,
>> John McConnell
>> Home:  407-857-2004
>> Cell:      407-867-2192
>> Email:   jlmcconnell at bellsouth.net
> -- 
> "finite players
> play within boundaries.
> Infinite players
> play *with* boundaries."
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