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September 01 , 2008

Truth in the Making

Creative Knowledge in Theology and Philosophy


Is knowing a purely passive reception of something concrete outside the mind, or when we know something, are we creating something too?
Spanning more than 500 years of philosophical enquiry from the Middle Ages to the present day, Robert Miner clarifies modern philosophical conceptions of knowing as making or constructing, and contrasts this view with the theological understanding of knowing as a participation in divine creation.
This study demonstrates how 'creative knowledge' has its roots in the theologies of Thomas Aquinas and Nicholas Cusanus. It explores the multiple ways in which this idea influenced the architects of modern philosophy, most notably Francis Bacon, René Descartes and Thomas Hobbes, despite their secular stance. Miner contends that, well in advance of Kant, one of these thinkers, Gaimbattista Vico provided a remarkably succinct formulation of the metaphysical and epistemological core of modernity in his principle verum et factum convertuntur: 'the true and the made are convertible'.
In Truth in the Making, Robert Miner challenges the standard assumption that Kant was the first thinker to conceive of knowing as constructive activity, and shows how contemporary theology can reclaim a concept of knowing that is both creative and participant in divine wisdom.
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