Michael Rea is professor of philosophy and director of the Center for Philosophy of Religion at the University of Notre Dame. On March 14, he will be the speaker for the Scripture and Ministry lecture series sponsored by the Carl F. H. Henry Center for Theological Understanding.
The lecture will be held in TEDS chapel and will also be live-streamed here. This event is free and open to the public.
Refreshments will begin at 12:45 pm, followed by the lecture at 1:00 pm (with Q&A to follow).
The topic of the lecture …
“Divine Hiddenness, Divine Silence”
Divine silence, or divine hiddenness, is an important source of doubt and spiritual distress for religious believers, and is often seen as supporting atheism. Many seem to be utterly broken by divine silence in the midst of suffering, or by unsatisfied longing for the presence of God. In this talk, Michael Rea explains why divine silence poses a serious obstacle to belief in God, and then goes on to consider ways of overcoming that obstacle. After considering several ways in which divine silence might benefit us, he argues that perhaps silence is simply God’s preferred mode of interaction with creatures like us. Perhaps God desires communion more than overt communication, and perhaps we can experience God’s presence richly even amidst the silence. Rea concludes that it is plausible to think that Biblical narratives and the liturgies of the church are vehicles by which God’s presence is mediated to us.