John Cottingham is Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, University of Reading and Honorary Fellow, St John’s College, Oxford University. He is co-editor and translator of the three-volume Cambridge edition of The Philosophical Writings of Descartes. He was formerly an editor of Ratio, the international journal of analytic philosophy, president of the British Society for the Philosophy of Religion, Chairman of the British Society for the History of Philosophy, and president of the Aristotelian Society. Recently John was recognized as one of the 25 most influential living philosophers.
In the conversation we discuss:
- John’s ongoing relationship with Descartes
- How most philosophers get Descartes wrong and his spiritual dimension
- The task and challenge for the philosopher of religion
- The nature of religious knowledge
- Deity and the depth dimension
- Modernity and the disenchantment of nature
- Meaning, value, consciousness, and awareness are things to make sense of for the philosopher
- The relationship of theory and praxis in the study of religion
- Intimations of the transcendence and determinate religion
- Making sense of the return of religion without God
- Personal and intellectual integration
- Previous guest, Fiona Ellis, introduced me to John. If you enjoyed this episode then check out Fiona’s visit here.