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Learning to Trust in Freedom

Signs from Jewish, Christian, and Muslim Traditions

True religious faith cannot be confirmed by any external proofs. Rather, it is founded on a basic act of trust—and the common root of that trust, for Jewish, Christian, and Islamic traditions, is a belief in the divine creation of the universe. But with Learning to Trust in Freedom, David B. Burrell asks the provocative question: How do we reach that belief, and what is it about the universe that could possibly testify to its divine origins? Even St. Augustine, he points out, could only find faith after a harrowing journey through the lures of desire—and it is that very desire that Burrell seizes on as a tool with which to explore the origin and purpose of the world. Delving deep into the intertwinings of desire and faith, and drawing on St. John of the Cross, Edith Stein, and Charles Taylor, Burrell offers a new understanding of free will, trust, and perception.

93 pages | 6 x 9 | © 2010

Religion: Comparative Studies and History of Religion

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Table of Contents

Preface: Time and Freedom
Introduction: Freedom as Response

1.  Learning from Traditions to Overcome the Pastness of the Past: From Modernity to 
2.  Contrasting Acting as Initiating with Acting as Responding: A Classical View of Will
3.  Creation and Cosmic Trust in Abrahamic Faith Traditions
4.  Philosophical Presumptions and Strategies Clarified by Theology
5.  How Narrative Contextualizes and Articulates Freedom: Augustine and Etty Hillesum
6.  Beyond Optimism to Hope: John of the Cross and Edith Stein Responding to Charles Taylor


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