God as Love: The Concept and Spiritual Aspects of Agape in Modern Russian Religious Thought

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9780802868930: God as Love: The Concept and Spiritual Aspects of Agape in Modern Russian Religious Thought
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Nineteenth-century Russian religious intellectuals devoted a great deal of attention to the concept of "agape," or Divine Love, arguing that the Christian church is a reflection of the triune, self-sacrificing God and his love for all of creation. On account of their deliberations, these intellectuals played a key role in mediating between the Orthodox Church and modern society. In "God as Love" Johannes Oravecz presents a comprehensive summation of twenty-five prominent Russian thinkers and their thought on the concept of "agape," showing in detail how they broke new ground in their various affirmations of the truth that "God is love." No other book in any language treats this topic with such breadth and depth.

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Review:

Boris Jakim"This is an encyclopedic work of immense scholarship, unprecedented in the study of Russian religious thought. Not only does Johannes Oravecz give us valuable analyses of works on Divine love by the major figures of Russian philosophy (Solovyov, Florensky, Bulgakov), but he also ventures into the byways and introduces us to the ideas of lesser known writers such as Malevanskii, Tareev, and Svetlov. This book is obviously rooted in Oravecz's personal experience: it is a book about God's love written by someone who loves God."T. Allan Smith--University of St. Michael's College, Toronto"In this much-needed study of the historical development of Russian theology in the modern period, Johannes Oravecz brings to the attention of English readers some hidden gems of Russian theology. . . . He intersperses his discussion with excerpts from the theological writings under review, many of them rendered into English for the first time. Oravecz's God as Love offers a wealth of bibliographical information and is sure to become a standard reference work both for specialists in Russian theology and for scholars interested in learning from other voices of the Christian tradition."Lubomir Zak--Pontifical Lateran University, Vatican City, Rome"An outstanding introduction into the Russian Orthodox religious thought of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Oravecz demonstrates with precision and competence the rich complexity of the Russian theological and philosophical realm."Robert F. Slesinski--Saint Sophia Ukrainian Orthodox Seminary"Truly encyclopedic in scope, this study of modern Russian religious thought has one central focus -- the theme of love as it was approached and analyzed by a host of nineteenth- and twentieth-century authors, whose impassioned writings on the subject of love and particularly God as Love range from the pastoral to the heights of speculative philosophical and theological thinking."

"Theological Studies"
"Graciousness, thoroughness, and an evident love for God characterize this highly readable opportunity to taste and see the variety of "God as Love.""
Boris Jakim
"This is an encyclopedic work of immense scholarship, unprecedented in the study of Russian religious thought. Not only does Johannes Oravecz give us valuable analyses of works on Divine love by the major figures of Russian philosophy (Solovyov, Florensky, Bulgakov), but he also ventures into the byways and introduces us to the ideas of lesser known writers such as Malevanskii, Tareev, and Svetlov. This book is obviously rooted in Oravecz s personal experience: it is a book about God s love written by someone who loves God."
T. Allan Smith
--University of St. Michael s College, Toronto
"In this much-needed study of the historical development of Russian theology in the modern period, Johannes Oravecz brings to the attention of English readers some hidden gems of Russian theology. . . . He intersperses his discussion with excerpts from the theological writings under review, many of them rendered into English for the first time. Oravecz s "God as Love" offers a wealth of bibliographical information and is sure to become a standard reference work both for specialists in Russian theology and for scholars interested in learning from other voices of the Christian tradition."
Lubomir Zak
--Pontifical Lateran University, Vatican City, Rome
"An outstanding introduction into the Russian Orthodox religious thought of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Oravecz demonstrates with precision and competence the rich complexity of the Russian theological and philosophical realm."
Robert F. Slesinski
--Saint Sophia Ukrainian Orthodox Seminary
"Truly encyclopedic in scope, this study of modern Russian religious thought has one central focus -- the theme of love as it was approached and analyzed by a host of nineteenth- and twentieth-century authors, whose impassioned writings on the subject of love and particularly God as Love range from the pastoral to the heights of speculative philosophical and theological thinking.""

" Theological Studies"
"Graciousness, thoroughness, and an evident love for God characterize this highly readable opportunity to taste and see the variety of "God as Love.""
Boris Jakim
"This is an encyclopedic work of immense scholarship, unprecedented in the study of Russian religious thought. Not only does Johannes Oravecz give us valuable analyses of works on Divine love by the major figures of Russian philosophy (Solovyov, Florensky, Bulgakov), but he also ventures into the byways and introduces us to the ideas of lesser known writers such as Malevanskii, Tareev, and Svetlov. This book is obviously rooted in Oravecz s personal experience: it is a book about God s love written by someone who loves God."
T. Allan Smith
--University of St. Michael s College, Toronto
"In this much-needed study of the historical development of Russian theology in the modern period, Johannes Oravecz brings to the attention of English readers some hidden gems of Russian theology. . . . He intersperses his discussion with excerpts from the theological writings under review, many of them rendered into English for the first time. Oravecz s "God as Love" offers a wealth of bibliographical information and is sure to become a standard reference work both for specialists in Russian theology and for scholars interested in learning from other voices of the Christian tradition."
Lubomir Zak
--Pontifical Lateran University, Vatican City, Rome
"An outstanding introduction into the Russian Orthodox religious thought of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Oravecz demonstrates with precision and competence the rich complexity of the Russian theological and philosophical realm."
Robert F. Slesinski
--Saint Sophia Ukrainian Orthodox Seminary
"Truly encyclopedic in scope, this study of modern Russian religious thought has one central focus -- the theme of love as it was approached and analyzed by a host of nineteenth- and twentieth-century authors, whose impassioned writings on the subject of love and particularly God as Love range from the pastoral to the heights of speculative philosophical and theological thinking."
"Cistercian Studies Quarterly"
A most enlightening and worthwhile pilgrimage. . . . This is a valuable contribution to the ongoing rediscovery of the Russian thinkers wonderful vision of the Gospel put into practice, liturgy connecting with life, the church embracing and transforming the world.
"

Modern Greek Studies Yearbook
"An outstanding contribution to the study of Russian religious thought. . . . Superb."

-- Scarlet Marquette in Slavic and East European Journal
"The book represents a significant and original contribution to Russian theology and philosophy, as well as to an understanding of Russian Orthodox thought and Russian Modernism. . . . Masterful."

-- Adrian Helleman in Calvin Theological Journal
"Although the entire book is focused on love, the last chapter is an especially beautiful essay on the nature of love in all its many aspects, incorporating the insights discussed earlier in the book. I heartily recommend this book as a good entry point into the centrality of love in the thought of some of the greatest Russian Orthodox thinkers."

Boris Jakim
"This is an encyclopedic work of immense scholarship, unprecedented in the study of Russian religious thought. Not only does Johannes Oravecz give us valuable analyses of works on Divine love by the major figures of Russian philosophy (Solovyov, Florensky, Bulgakov), but he also ventures into the byways and introduces us to the ideas of lesser known writers such as Malevanskii, Tareev, and Svetlov. This book is obviously rooted in Oravecz's personal experience: it is a book about God's love
written by someone who loves God."

T. Allan Smith
--University of St. Michael's College, Toronto
"In this much-needed study of the historical development of Russian theology in the modern period, Johannes Oravecz brings to the attention of English readers some hidden gems of Russian theology. . . . He intersperses his discussion with excerpts from the theological writings under review, many of them rendered into English for the first time. Oravecz's God as Love offers a wealth of bibliographical information and is sure to become a standard reference work both for specialists in Russian theology and for scholars interested in learning from other voices of the Christian tradition."

Lubomir Zak
--Pontifical Lateran University, Vatican City, Rome
"An outstanding introduction into the Russian Orthodox religious thought of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Oravecz demonstrates with precision and competence the rich complexity of the Russian theological and philosophical realm."

Robert F. Slesinski
--Saint Sophia Ukrainian Orthodox Seminary
"Truly encyclopedic in scope, this study of modern Russian religious thought has one central focus -- the theme of love as it was approached and analyzed by a host of nineteenth- and twentieth-century authors, whose impassioned writings on the subject of love and particularly God as Love range from the pastoral to the heights of speculative philosophical and theological thinking."

Theological Studies
"Graciousness, thoroughness, and an evident love for God characterize this highly readable opportunity to taste and see the variety of God as Love."

Cistercian Studies Quarterly
"A most enlightening and worthwhile pilgrimage. . . . This is a valuable contribution to the ongoing rediscovery of the Russian thinkers' wonderful vision of the Gospel put into practice, liturgy connecting with life, the church embracing and transforming the world."

About the Author:

Johannes Miroslav Oravecz is a lecturer at the Byzantine Catholic Seminary of Pittsburgh and a parochial vicar at St Thomas More Church in the Diocese of Pittsburgh.

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