Contemplation and Kingdom

978-1-58731-136-9
Forthcoming Books
Hardback $22
4.5" x 7", 172 pages

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Contemplation and Kingdom

Aquinas Reads Richard of St. Victor

Hart, Kevin

This book rises out of Dr. Kevin Hart’s 2020 Aquinas Lecture at the University of Dallas. and Kingdom seeks to retrieve aspects of Richard of St. Victor's treatment of contemplation, principally in De arca mystica, and does so by weighing Thomas Aquinas's reservations about this treatment in the Summa theologiæ. Is Aquinas right to object, as Augustine does in De Doctrina Christiana, that our contemplation should go directly to God and not be stalled in the consideration of the natural world? What relation is there between Jesus's preaching of the Kingdom and the contemplation of God? Is the contemplative life consistent with Jesus's injunction to love both God and neighbor? These are the principal questions considered in the book.

This book is vintage Hart, erudite, well written, a treat for a wide readership. It is an example of how theology ought to be done, with a clarity and depth unsurpassed in today’s scholarly world. Its blend of anglo-saxon elegance and continental insights will be praised in the Academy and outside. – Jean-Yves Lacoste, Clare Hall, Cambridge

In the light of great contemporary interest in contemplation, this brilliant and erudite work is a stunning example. The focus on Richard of St. Victor and Thomas Aquinas is especially appropriate. Theologians and philosophers will be especially thankful for Kevin Hart’s work on the actuality of contemplation. – David Tracy, University of Chicago