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Recently Posted and hopefully not buried in this site

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Recently Posted:


See the page “Blogging my thoughts” on the Conservative Individualism of William F. Buckley, Jr. 

Recent entries into my website are somewhat hidden. In the Martin Luther page, I placed an important description of Luther’s theology capturing some of the important Luther themes as highlighted by Professor Robert Goeser, with whom I worked for many years.

My entries about performative language are also inspired by Goeser’s direction, because he claimed that Luther’s theology was concrete, occasional, and performative. His writing is not abstract and intellectual and thus needing practical thought for its application; it is thought out of his experience and directly informs our experience. Occasional means he does not write for life in general, but writes addressing issues, controversies, and crises that were at hand. Some scholars criticized Goeser’s using the term performative in this regard. Lutheran theology usually speaks about language of address and Theology of the Word containing the word as command and the word as promise.

My quest then was to see if Goeser was confusing performance with performativity, which is easily done. Thus I studied John Searle’s Philosophy of Language in order to clarify the issue. Theologically Lutherans have a different and richer way of speaking about what God does through language, but when Luther defines the gospel as the promises of God and the law as the word of command, he places his Theology of the Word squarely into what Austin and Searle call the performative, with God as the Speaker. So Goeser was right. Luther’s theology is performative.

See my February Theology Lectures and don’t be frightened by the symbols. They are merely the first letters of simple words. B = belief, I = intention, W = wish or want, S = speaker, H = hearer, p = proposition, (which is merely a simple sentence or claim in logic), and the arrow  going down means the word has to bend to reflect the world, while the arrow going up means the world has to change to reflect the meaning of the words. (The arrows did not copy onto WordPress here.) Searle calls these the two directions of fit.

Meanwhile below these lectures I am placing some thoughts together for a class that is reading Luther’s Spirituality at Christ Lutheran Church in El Cerrito, CA.


Written by peterkrey

February 11, 2008 at 8:03 pm

Posted in 1

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