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546 BOOK REVIEWS Now as a matter of fact, William Alston has elaborately and explicitly gone beyond this, to defend the possibility that human beings sometimes perceive God. But he develops his account of perceiving God on analogy with perceiving physical objects; and to perceive a tree is not to have an immediate awareness of a tree. With these points clearly in mind, one has to look once again at Plato, Augustine, and Calvin. It appears to me that Augustine did think that we had direct awareness of God, and that Plato thought we had direct awareness of The Good. If so, then there is less continuity than Hoitenga thinks between them and contemporary Reformed epistemology . As for Calvin, it is not at all clear to me that he thought we had direct awareness of God: awareness, yes, hut not direct. If I'm right about that, then a divide comes somewhere between Augustine and Calvin. My own hunch is that what accounts for the difference here is that Augustine thought that to he aware of God is to he aware of (part of) the realm of necessity, whereas Calvin did not believe that. But following up that hunch would take a large article-or a small book! NICHOLAS P. WOLTERSTORFF Yale University New Haven, Connecticut The Theology of Canon Law, A Methodological Question. By EUGENIO CORECCO. Pittsburgh: Duquesne University Press, 1992. Pp. 159. $21.95. So that one might better understand the nature of the Church, the Second Vatican Council encourages the study of Canon Law (OT 16). In 1971 and 1974 Paul VI called upon canonists to develop more fully the theological nature of canon law. Eugenio Corecco's book is a longawaited response to this call. The author (1931-) is one of the pre-eminent canonists. He is on the Papal Council for the Interpretation of Legislative Texts and chairs the Consortio lnternationalis Studio Iuris Canonici Promovendo. Prior to becoming Bishop of Lugano, he had been canon law professor in Frihourg, Switzerland. This hook is an English version of Theologie du Droit Canon. Dr. Francesco Turvasi, MSC, supplied the translation. It greatly expands on previous contributions of Bishop Corecco in: IKaZ Communio 6(77), pp. 481-495; Canonistica 4 (Theologie des Kirchenrechts, Trier, 1980) and Handbuch des katholischen Kirchenrechts (1983). BOOK REVIEWS 547 Does indeed an ontological connection between human legal norms and a higher law exist? If such is the case, Corecco argues, "a theological doctrine of canon law needs to he developed " (p. 54) . With unusual perspicacity he accomplishes this on a wide philosophicaltheological canvas. In the first chapter the author readily acknowledges that canon law constrains personal freedom. It is experienced as an obstacle to "the dynamic manifestations of the Spirit" On the other hand canon law enables one to overcome individualism and to practice fidelity to the communion. It offers stability and equilibrium. This tension he describes as part of the paradox of Christian existence. In the second chapter (pp. 5-54) the underlying unity of law in Classical and Christian thought is delineated. Already in the days of Homer and Plato a hidden harmony between the divine/cosmic order and social norms is established. In Sophism the tension between ob· j ective, divine law and the validity of natural law arises. Plato suc· cessfully mediates by seeing an organic unity of positive and natural law, which is grounded in the transcendent idea of justice (universalia ante rem). Aristotle divines this idea as a reality immanent in each thing (universalia in re) . The Old Testament saw God as the "immediate and personal source of law" (p. 21). The majority of Fathers thus note a consensus between the Stoic and Judeo-Christian views. Ambrose states a conson· ance of grace and law. Jurisprudence is to Ulpian "the knowledge of things human and divine" (p. 12). While noting the existence of a strong bond between lex aeternus, lex naturalis and lex humana, Augustine 's clear distinction between ratio divina and ratio humana will prove fateful in the Renaissance. The Middle Ages witness a reductio ad unum. To Thomas, God can only will what is rational. Herein the unity of natural and divine law finds its...

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Additional Information

ISSN
2473-3725
Print ISSN
0040-6325
Pages
pp. 546-549
Launched on MUSE
2017-04-05
Open Access
No
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