The Model of Love: A Study in Philosophical Theology
Religious believers understand the meaning of their lives and of the world in terms of the way these are related to God. The conceptual models whereby this relationship is described therefore play a key role in the conceptual designs which theologians produce to express the faith of the community of believers. Vincent Brümmer examines the implications of using the model of love in this context and looks at a number of the most significant views of the nature of love: exclusive attention (Ortega y Gasset), ecstatic union (nuptial mysticism), passionate suffering (courtly love), need-love (Plato, Augustine), and gift-love (Nygren). All these views are shown to interpret love as an attitude rather than as a relation between persons. In the final chapters a relational concept of love is developed, and it is shown how all the various attitudes discussed in the previous chapters have a role to play. Finally, the implications are addressed of using the model of love as a key model in theology.
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