Christianity and the Life of the Mind: An Introduction 2012

Christianity and the Life of the Mind: An Introduction. Video content.

What does our calling to be disciples of Christ mean for our academic vocation (whether temporary as students or longer term as a career)? What are some of the promises and pitfalls of the scholarly life? How can academics and postgraduate students serve and relate to the wider body of Christ (the Church)?

We believe that considering these questions is a matter of Christian discipleship for graduate students and postdocs of faith. Through lectures and discussion, the ‘Christianity and the Life of the Mind’ conference creates space for an academic and personal introduction to the aim of ‘Developing a Christian Mind at Oxford’.

‘The calling of Christian postgrad students and academics’: An introductory lecture, given by Ard Louis at the Graduate Christian Union.

Ard Louis: The calling of Christian postgraduate students and academics. from oxfordchristianmind on Vimeo.

How Christians relate to the world (Alister McGrath)

This lecture sets out the different ways in which Christians relate to the world, be they positive, negative or mixed. What is the value of these models of relating for understanding our relationship to secular academic disciplines?

Alister McGrath: How Christians relate to the world (2012) from oxfordchristianmind on Vimeo.

A Christian worldview? (Benno van den Toren)

This lecture discusses the notion of ‘worldview’ and its influence on the development of a Christian mind in the contemporary world. It outlines main elements of Christian worldview and the implications for Christian attitudes to life, the world, and science.

Benno van den Toren: A Christian worldview? (2012) from oxfordchristianmind on Vimeo.

The doctrine of creation and the science of nature (Ard Louis)

This lecture explores how far the Judaeo-Christian understanding of creation has been fundamental in the development of modern science. It also explores the tensions between modern science and the Christian understanding of reality and how to enable constructive dialogue

Ard Louis: The doctrine of creation and the science of nature (2012) from oxfordchristianmind on Vimeo.

What does it mean to be human? (Elaine Storkey)

This lecture discusses how the Christian understanding of the human being steers a course between individualism and collectivism, between fatalism and personal freedom, between materialism and ‘idealism’; and how its personal and communitarian understanding of the human being is grounded in the Trinitarian God.

Elaine Storkey: What does it mean to be human? (2012) from oxfordchristianmind on Vimeo.

Seek the Welfare of the City (Donald Hay)
The contours of a Christian engagement with the University

Donald Hay: Seek the Welfare of the University (Jeremiah 29:7) from oxfordchristianmind on Vimeo.

What went wrong with humankind? (Elaine Storkey)

The social sciences in particular have implicit or explicit convictions about what is wrong with the world, and many individual scholars are driven by the desire to improve society and to alleviate suffering. How do these understandings relate to the Christian understanding of sin and evil?

Elaine Storkey: What went wrong with humankind? (2012) from oxfordchristianmind on Vimeo.

What is salvation? (Benno van den Toren)

Salvation in Christ is not just a spiritual reality – it touches the whole of our being, the whole of humanity, and has cosmic dimensions. Salvation therefore has implications for how we relate to the world in our disciplines and professions. The lecture is an introduction to the different dimensions of redemption through Christ

Benno van den Toren: What is salvation? (2012) from oxfordchristianmind on Vimeo.

Some initial bibliographical notes:

  • David K. Naugle, Worldview: The History of a Concept, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2002.
  • Brian W. Walsh & J. Richard Middleton, The Transforming Vision: Shaping a Christian Worldview, Downers Grove: IVP, 1984.
  • Cornelius Plantinga, Engaging God’s World: A Christian Vision of Faith, Learning, and Living, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2002.
  • Gene Edward Veith, Loving God with All your Mind: how to Survive and Prosper as a Christian in Higher Education and post-Christian Culture, Leicester: IVP, 1989.
  • Kelly James Clark, Return to Reason: A Critique of Enlightenment Evidentialism and a Defense of Reason and Belief in God, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1990.
  • Christopher B. Kai­ser, Creation and the History of Science, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1991.
  • Thomas F. Torrance, The Ground and Grammar of Theology: Consonance between Theology and Science, New Edition, Edinburgh: T. & T. Clark, 2001 [1980].
  • Alister E. McGrath, The Foundations of Dialogue in Science and Religion, Oxford: Blackwell, 1998.
  • Roy A. Clouser, The Myth of Religious Neutrality: A Essay on the Hidden Role of Religious Belief in Theories, Revised Edition, Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 2005.
  • James P. Moreland & William L. Craig, Philosophical Foundations for a Christian Worldview, Downers Grove: IVP, 2003.
  • Stanley J. Grenz, The Social God and the Relational Self: A Trinitarian Theology of the Imago Dei, series: The Matrix of Theology, Louisville: Westminster John Knox, 2001.
  • Tom Wright, Surprised by Hope, London: SPCK, 2007.

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“…Very stimulating and thought-provoking presentations and discussion – and a good opportunity to meet other graduates with whom to ponder these things…”

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