5. Lonergan's Jaw

John C. Haughey

in Finding God in All Things

Published by Fordham University Press

Published in print December 2007 | ISBN: 9780823228089
Published online March 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780823236954 | DOI:
5. Lonergan's Jaw

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The title of this chapter refers to a recent newspaper article about the discovery of the mutation of a gene about 2.4 million years ago that lead to much weaker jaws in certain primates. But the upside of these weaker jaws was the growth of larger brains in the development of the human species. The chapter uses this recent scientific discovery as a springboard to discuss Bernard Lonergan's world-view of “emergent probability”, a view that describes how the ongoing accumulation of scientific and humanistic data helps account for the complex interdependency of cosmic evolution. It illuminates how Lonergan's notion of emergent probability changes the very nature of how we speak about “God talk” and about human transcendence. For Lonergan, emergent probability has its greatest referent in the intersubjective experience of love. He considers the human person as a co-creator who actively intervenes in the drama of the cosmos, assisting its progress or halting its decline.

Keywords: Bernard Lonergan; emergent probability; love; evolution; cosmos; human transcendence

Chapter.  4061 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

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