“Emptying God: The Ethics of Theology in Merleau-Ponty’s Work.” Mayra Rivera Rivera
“God: Theological Accounts and Ethical Possibilities.” A conference at the University of Chicago Divinity School. Mayra Rivera Rivera, Harvard Divinity School. Respondent Rick Elgendy, University of Chicago.
Questions about the relationship between God and the good and the right remain as urgent today as they did in ancient times. For example, what is the relationship between claims about the nature or character of God and the moral actions motivated by those claims? What is the relationship between moral codes underwritten by claims about God and the ethics espoused by the (ideally agnostic) civic sphere? Are beliefs about God open to moral critique by others who espouse different beliefs or no beliefs at all?
Today answers to these questions must take into account factors such as cultural and religious pluralism, hybrid theologies that incorporate teachings and beliefs from a variety of religious traditions, and religiously motivated violence around the world. This conference invites philosophers, theologians and religious ethicists to offer accounts of God relevant to the current state of affairs in the West while taking seriously the possibility of a relationship between God and ethics.
This conference was supported by grants from the University of Chicago Divinity School, the Martin Marty Center for the Advanced Study of Religion, the University of Chicago Franke Institute for the Humanities, the Norman Wait Harris Fund of the University of Chicago Center for International Studies, and the Aronberg Fund of the University of Chicago Center for Jewish Studies.
Recorded in Swift Hall on April 9-11, 2014.