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[THL 1000] - Final Exam Guide - Comprehensive Notes for the exam (34 pages long!)


Department
Theology & Religious Studies
Course Code
THL 1000
Professor
Timothy Hanchin
Study Guide
Final

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Villanova University
THL 1000
FINAL EXAM
STUDY GUIDE

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THL 1000
Dr. Hanchin
Notes
“Is Belief Wishful Thinking?”
“Defining Faith” – Tilley
Substantive Points:
Faith both is and isn’t wishful
thinking, it just depends on
what context you are looking
at it from. Faith is wishful
thinking in the sense that we
have reasons for it and
although all the evidence is
not there, we believe it to be
true. However, it isn’t wishful
thinking in the sense that we
have “blind faith” in
something with no
explanation or evidence
supporting it. Instead, faith is
between these two extremes
as something that requires a
little wishful thinking but
isn’t entirely wishful
thinking.
Questions:
How can faith be something
and not that thing at the same
time?
Does McCabe think that there
are faiths out there that can be
on either side of the extreme?
Reflection:
McCabe offers good analysis
of how we think about faith.
By defining the two different
views that people have of
wishful thinking, he is able to
successfully defend his
argument as faith being
something that requires
wishful thinking, but is not
entirely made up of wishful
thinking.
Substantive Point:
Terrence Tilley defines faith
as the thing that we center our
existence around. This
doesn’t necessarily have to be
one God or a religious aspect
but could be multiple values
that are intrinsic to our being.
He also makes the analogy of
faith to love and how each
develops over time and must
be truly felt. Faith, in his
opinion, is both a gift and a
choice.
Questions:
How did Tilley find his own
faith and does he believe it
was more of his personal
choice or forced upon him?
Reflection:
I agree that faith is a mix of
choice and upbringing.
Although we may be
influenced by those around us
to accept a faith, we make the
ultimate choice in whether or
not we will believe in it.
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Class Discussion:
What is my object of life?
Love and Happiness
o Seeking the approval of others so that I cannot only love them but they will love
me back
o Creating joy and happiness in others because through that I can experience joy
myself
o Having a successful career so that I can fund things I enjoy and contribute to my
overall happiness as well as the happiness of those that I care about
What did I learn in class today?
-Faith is universal and everyone has it, although it isn’t necessarily religion based
-Regardless of our individual upbringings, we all have something that we are working towards
“The Sabbath” – By Abraham Joshua Heschel
Class Discussion Notes:
Trying to recover the meaning of the Sabbath and the importance of time. Our communal
practice of faith can help us shape our desires away from those of culture and more so with ones
we personally agree with. Need help of community and practices to fight forces.
“Judaism is a religion of time aiming at the sanctification of time” (8)
“It is, indeed, a unique occasion at which the distinguished word qadosh is used for the first
time: in the Book of Genesis at the end of the story of creation. How extremely significant is the
fact that time is applied by God: blessed the seventh day and made it holy”
Substantive Points:
We should worship time as
holy and not space or
physical objects. The Sabbath
is the seventh day and the
first thing that God deemed
holy so it is a special day for
rest and reflection. The
Sabbath should not be seen as
a means of relaxing to be
more productive for the week
but rather the weekdays
should be seen as working
towards relaxation on the
Sabbath.
Questions:
If time is the most holy
things, should we reject all
other things that are physical
and a part of holy space?
Does our obsession with
space as a holy attribute come
from our fear that our time is
limited and so we don’t want
to reflect on time and its
meaning?
Reflection:
Although I agree with
Heschel that many people
place too much importance in
material objects I find it
difficult to accept time as the
holiest of all things. The
Sabbath may be a time for
reflection and relaxation
however there must also be
some truth to the holiness we
place in objects that have to
do with space, and there must
also be things that are holy
and have an overlap time and
space.
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