Cromey Online

The writings of author, therapist, and priest Robert Warren Cromey.

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Sunday, June 16, 2013

My Philosophy of Religion


I was a philosophy minor at NYU. Sidney Hook was chair of the department. William Barrett, the existentialist scholar, was one of my teachers. I read lots of Kierkegaard then and sill do from time to time. K. was a believer as I am. Hook and Barrett were not. They presented their arguments fairly and objectively. I soon was comfortable with the notion that religion in general was a matter of transcendence, wonder, awe, compassion, forgiveness and love. These were matters that might be understood by logic and science and should be investigated. I was drawn to the ethical and moral teaching derived from religion and its writings.

In particular I was inspired by the ethical and behavioral practices of Jesus as found in the gospels.

“If Kierkegaard is your benchmark, then you judge any philosophy not just on the basis of how cogent its arguments are, but on whether it speaks to the fundamental needs of human beings trying to make sense of the world.”

I see Christianity at its best as concerned with the basic needs of human beings dealing with the paradoxes, the fundamental evil and goodness inherent in human nature. Living in that tension is the sign of maturity, health and intensity of human life.

Working for peace, an end to poverty, health care for all, and an end to hunger is a impossible task. Yet the paradox is that that is exactly what we have to do as Christians and as human beings

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