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Nothingness and Gratitude: The Beshara Lecture 2017

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St Ethelburga's Centre

78 Bishopsgate

London

EC2N 4AG

United Kingdom

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Speaker: George Pattison.

Nothingness is one of the key terms of the Western mystical tradition. Mystical texts portray the self as called upon to become or to recognize that it is nothing before God, who is all in all. Yet, at the same time, Christianity, like other monotheistic faiths, calls on humans to 'give thanks always' (St Paul), suggesting that, in some way, we stand over against God and are free to accept or refuse the gifts God bestows upon us. Nothingness and gratitude in this way illustrate two different aspects or movements of spiritual life and the lecture will explore the relationship between them with reference to major figures of the Abrahamic traditions.

George Pattison is a theologian and an Anglican priest with particular interests in philosophy – notably Kierkegaard, Heidegger and Dostoyevsky – and the theology of art and film. He has held the 1640 Chair of Divinity at the University of Glasgow since 2103. Before this he was the Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity at the University of Oxford from 2004 to 2013 and a Canon of Christ Church Cathedral.

A recent interview with George Pattison can be found here:

https://besharamagazine.org/metaphysics-spirituality/george-pattison-mysticism-in-comparative-perspective/


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St Ethelburga's Centre

78 Bishopsgate

London

EC2N 4AG

United Kingdom

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