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date: 21 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter discusses four general features of modern Orthodox epistemology of theology—ontologism, apophaticism, integral knowledge, and the noetic implications of theosis—and the contributions of individual Orthodox authors, including Berdyaev, Bulgakov, Florensky, Florovsky, Frank, Khomiakov, Lossky, Solovyov, and Zizioulas. Ontologism is a philosophical stance that subordinates epistemology to metaphysics; apophaticism is an attitude towards the mystery of God with implications for theories of religious language, religious experience, and metaphysics; a theory of integral knowledge challenges one-sided epistemologies developed in modernity; and the idea of theosis indicates human participation in the life of God, which has implications for the process of coming to know God. Gavrilyuk highlights the retrieval by Orthodox neopatristic theologians of important pre-modern epistemological insights as well as their contributions to personalism, reliabilism, and social and virtue epistemology that remain unknown in Western scholarly literature.

Keywords: Nikolai Berdyaev, Sergius Bulgakov, Pavel Florensky, Georges Florovsky, Aleksei Khomiakov, Vladimir Lossky, Vladimir Solovyov, John Zizioulas, integral knowledge, neopatristic theology

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