Section: Metaphysics and Religion.

HUNT, Royden.

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In Fides et Ratio a number of philosophical requirements are mentioned for our understanding of how the human spirit can 'rise to the contemplation of Truth' through faith and reason. Philosophy should have a 'sapiential dimension' which explains the natural foundation for the human search for the ultimate meaning of life. (para 81). It should also verify the human capacity to reach objective truth by an adaequatio rei et intellectus.(82) These in turn imply 'the need for a philosophy of genuinely metaphysical range, capable of transcending empirical data in order to attain something absolute, ultimate and foundational in its search for truth.'(83) Further, 'a theology without a metaphysical horizon could not move beyond an analysis of religious experience, nor would it allow the intellectus fidei to give a coherent account of the universal and transcendent value of revealed truth.' (83)

This paper will outline how closely John Paul is relying on Rosmini's account of the nature of metaphysics given in his 'Preface to the Metaphysical Works'. Here the relationship between epistemology and metaphysics is made clear, and the latter defined as the philosophical account of real being, which therefore includes Natural Theology. The paper will indicate how Rosmini's metaphysics is capable of resisting the challenge of both Humean and Kantian criticism, so restoring that confidence which 'Fides et Ratio' places in the human ability to combine both reason and faith in the assent to the truth of Revelation and to belief in a transcendent, Triune God.