Frontmatter

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Title page, copyright

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pp. i-iv

Contents

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pp. v-vi

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Acknowledgments

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pp. vii-x

First of all, I am profoundly thankful for the constant sympathy and support of my wife, Anna Maria, throughout the writing of this book, as I am for my children’s understanding of the role that writing plays in their father’s life and work....

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Introduction

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pp. 1-9

The following chapters converge on one central point: the crucial need to return to the actual teaching of St. Thomas Aquinas with respect to the distinction within unity of nature and grace.1 Never has the phrase of Jacques Maritain, ‘‘distinguish in order to unite,’’ been...

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1. On the Loss, and the Recovery, of Nature as a the Economic Principle: Reflections on the Nature/Grace Controversy

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pp. 10-51

Dr. Lawrence Feingold is to be thanked for the comprehensive, instructive, and irenic character of his work The Natural Desire to See God According to St. Thomas Aquinas and His Interpreters.1 The doctrinal and historical intricacy, the sympathy, indeed, the sheer...

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2. A Criticism of Nature as Vacuole for Grace

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pp. 52-109

In chapter 1, I responded to the famed thesis of Henri de Lubac while attempting to situate the theological problematic within which that thesis could seem the sole intelligible strategy for preserving the truth of Christian revelation from naturalism. In this...

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3. On the Impropriety of Treating Theology's Handmaiden like an Analytic

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pp. 110-139

The essential role of natura in theological method, with all its ontological dynamism, density, and relative autonomy vis-a`-vis the revelata, raises the stakes with regard to the understanding of nature and being.1 Following upon the theological recovery of nature, a correct...

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4. Why Natura Pura is not the Theological Stalking Horse for Secularist Minimalism or Pelagianism

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pp. 140-199

We have argued that nature is neither a pure theological posit, a mere geometric point without magnitude terminating the line of grace, nor the preserve of logicism, Humean conventionalism, scientism, and the other ‘‘isms’’ with which contemporary analytic...

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5. Conclusion

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pp. 200-211

The preceding pages articulate how central will be our understanding of the relation of nature and grace for the proper contemplation and living of Christian life, and for the Christian’s participation in cultural and public life. It has considered the implications...

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Appendix

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pp. 212-222

It is essential to our argument in the preceding text that there is indeed a proportionate natural end from which the human species is derived, and that indeed the praeambula fidei are susceptible of apodictic speculative knowledge. Here, however, we clearly...

Notes

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pp. 223-272

Index

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pp. 273-282