Stanisław Kamiński
Worldview - Religion - Theology
Towarzystwo Naukowe Katolickiego Uniwersytetu Lubelskiego, Lublin 1998



The fifth volume of The Collected Papers with a title Worldview - Religion - Theology contains the papers written by Professor Stanisław Kamiński (1919-1986) and focuses on three issues: origins and foundations of the worldview, methodology of theology and religiology as well as philosophy of God. The articles are arranged in three parts and in each of them chronologically ordered. They were published between 1962 and 1989 and some of them came out after Kamiński's death and were prepared by his followers. The bibliographic information appears in a footnote on the first page of each paper.

The idea behind the content of this volume was to collect the texts essentially dealing with problems of worldview, religion and God. The volume contains therefore papers written or co-written by Kamiński as well as his shorter remarks presented at various occasions. It does not, however, contain all Kamiriski's texts concerning the mentioned problems for some relevant articles are already published in the first volume entitled How to Do Philosophy?1 for which the author himself chose the papers.

Having stressed the analogical (ambiguous) character of all basic philosophical and methodological notions, Stanisław Kamiński claims that the methodologist should aim first of all at revealing this fact; another aim is to elaborate in a possibly neutral way epistemic evaluation of theses developed in science and philosophy. The methodologist as methodologist does not directly know any essential answers to questions asked by scientists and philosophers. He can however examine and disclose assumptions involved in a solution to a given problem; and he can evaluate scientific and philosophical theses from the point of view of logic and methodology as well as check the formal validity of arguments. This is possible for he has at his disposal the tools developed by logic, methodology and philosophy of science.

Kaminski's epistemological and methodological attitude is pluralistic. Kamiński tries to characterize methodologically different types of human knowledge. He distinguishes the following: commonsense knowledge, which is the base for all other types of knowledge, scientific knowledge, philosophical knowledge and theological knowledge as well as wisdom as a separated type. These types cannot be reduced to each other, for they ask their own questions, pursue different tasks and use different methods. Wisdom is possible for apart from senses and discursive reason there exists a distinct rational cognitive faculty - intellect.

Kamiński strongly opposes those theorists of science who declare the end of all types of maximalistic rational philosophizing. Identifying rationality with broadly understood scientific character (episteme) which goes beyond the rationality of science, Kamiński defends a rational character of theology. He carefully considers the relationship between theology and philosophy. In the name of methodological purity (demarcationism) he criticizes all "eclectical" conceptions of theology which try to unite theological, philosophical and scientific notions and theses (e. g. Teilhard de Chardin). The main objection is that such conceptions confuse different orders of cognition. In his conception of the philosophy of God, Kamiński rejects both any irrationalistic trends and scientistic rationalism. In his view the philosophy of God (for which he uses the Latin term theodicea) is a part of the philosophy of being (metaphysics). Especially he stresses importance of the solutions developed by the existential thomism. In his investigations of religion (religiology), he recognizes as legitimate the existence of many complementary kinds of research (empirical, philosophical and theological) and analyzes possibilities and limits of all those kinds.

In the first part of the book the article From Perception to a Worldview, is a short, general encyclopedic characteristic of particular types of human knowledge and their mutual relations. It also characterizes connections between epistemic activity and other human mental activities. According to Kamiński the worldview has its source in different types of knowledge. It functions as the foundation for any reflective human action. What gives the worldview its theoretical foundations are in the first place the most basic and genuine epistemic contacts between man and the world, i. e. external and internal perception, but also so gives commonsense knowledge, scientific and philosophical knowledge, wisdom-knowledge and knowledge through faith. A worldview can originate spontaneously on the basis of commonsense and religious knowledge. In this case, however, it forms an unsystematic set of the most general beliefs. When a worldview arises on the basis of philosophy and theology, when in forming it one uses generalizations of scientific results, then it becomes a coherent system of views which gives the most general picture of the fundamental aspects of reality (especially the order of values) and implies norms and evaluations of conduct.

The Worldview and the Faith appeared in 1987 as the first part of a planned three-part article. Its second and third parts remained only in draft. Kamiński was to elaborate a typology of worldviews, to indicate the essential need for Christian faith in a worldview and to characterize more precisely the Christian worldview. The text systematically deals with a structure of the worldview, with the nature of its determinants and with its various functions. He points to the fundamental role played by axiology in the structure of the worldview and in the choice of a worldview. Any worldview consists of both epistemic as well as emotional and volitional components. They condition each other but this is faith (not only religious) which often decides about the acceptance of fundamental beliefs belonging to a worldview. Life experience and emotions play an important role in acceptance or rejection of a worldview. Thus, Kamiński denies the possibility of constructing any worldview without emotional and volitional components and so criticizes the view which rejects faith as an element in developing a worldview by arguing that it goes against rationalism, optimism, activism and personal autonomy.

The second part of the volume is opened by a short lecture Discussion Concerning a Scientific Character of Theology written in 1962 which attempts to reveal methodological assumptions involved in the question of whether theology is knowledge (episteme). By considering various philosophical and theological positions Kamiński shows that any answer to the question concerning the epistemic character of theology is relative to the notion of knowledge accepted at a given stage of scientific history, and to the way in which theological cognition is understood. He writes: "It is after all possible to adopt such meanings of these words that the statement: 'theology is knowledge' is analytically true or analytically false. It is however evident that the issue is not purely verbal. If a discussion is to concern the substance of the question then one should explicitly indicate according to which theory of science (and why that) and which notion of theology (and why that) the problem is being solved" (p. 41).

The article A Conceptual Apparatus of Theology and Philosophy describes some contemporary attempts at modernization of theology by means of allying it with fashionable philosophical way of thinking. According to

Kamiński the issue of integrating theology and philosophy in Catholicism will be easier to tackle when one takes into account the methodological status of these domains. Kamiński limits his considerations to dogmatic theology taken to be the central domain of theoretical theological cognition and he takes up the problem of the relations between dogmatic theology and philosophy, especially the problem of conceptual apparatus of the two. He formulates the general conditions of adequacy, which, if fulfilled, would allow us to use philosophy in theology. One of those conditions demands the agreement between the Bible and philosophical theses concerning the general view of the world.

In the paper Is There Theological Anthropology? The Subject Matter of the Contemporary Catholic Theology Kamiński, taking into account the ambiguity of the term "the subject matter of theology", makes an attempt to determine the material and formal subject matter of theology. Since theological cognition concerns the redemptional relationship between God and man and does it not only in the light of revelation, this cognition requires reason as an auxiliary faculty, for the supernatural is not cognizable unless the natural life is included. Such a view on the subject matter of theology (including dogmatics) provides grounds for understanding theological investigations as theological anthropology.

The short text Functions of Philosophy in the Church Sciences describes functions which the classical philosophy plays in various theological disciplines. According to Kamiński, this kind of philosophy can provide the so-called praeambula fidei and help to understand more fully the truths of faith. It can also help to evaluate the potentialities and limits which applications of methods used in humanities to theology may have.

The extensive paper, entitled Definitions of Religion and Types of Studies on Religion and written together with Zofia J. Zdybicka, offers a comprehensive typology of traditional definitions of religion in connection with a systematic overview of particular disciplines of religiology (studies on religion) with respect to their subject matter, aims and methods. The authors indicate connections which appear between particular disciplines of religiology as well as between definitions of religion formulated on their grounds. They claim that we ought to abandon the dream of the only one theoretical definition of religion which would embrace the totality of religious experience and all research results in all disciplines of religiology. One can only expect to have definitions of religion arising in different studies on religion and harmoniously complementing one another, but more in the form of a mosaic than that of a formal and material synthesis.

TJie article Rational Factors in Modern Science and Theology. Methodological Aspects addresses the issue of functions of reason and theoretical

factors in theological knowledge in the light of meta-theoretical debates on the role of reason and experience in scientific cognition. According to Kamiński in theological cognition rational and revelational factors are intertwined, as intertwined are theoretical and empirical factors in science. The fact that theoretical factors are present in theology is one of the important characteristics of its cognitive nature.

The text The Review of the Discussion on the Paper "Epistemologico- -methodological Remarks on Theology" is a response to critical comments on Stanisław Kamiński's paper given at the Fourth Congress of Polish Theologians held in Kraków in 1976. This paper was published in the extended version with a title Methodological Characteristics of Theological Knowledge in the third volume of The Collected Papers. The text in this volume should be read in the context of the previous paper. On the one hand Kamiński attempts to defend the autonomy of theology and opposes reduction of theology to any type of philosophy or human sciences. On the other hand he suggests one should fully use methodology and results of empirical sciences in theology (assuming the harmony with the revelation as the criterium for such use).

The article The Contemporary Catholic Theology. A Methodological Characteristics offers a typology of methods used in developing theology. This typology follows a sketch of the development of theology in the twentieth century. Any attempt at systematization of theological methods encounters difficulties arising from the fact that in concrete cases it is very hard to indicate the scope and criterium for discerning a particular theological method. The ways of developing theology are very diversified and heterogenous. A theological method is a specific combination of many basic methods taken from other types of knowledge as well as those specific for theological cognition. This is the reason why all suggested typologies are relative but also valuable, including that elaborated by Stanisław Kamiński. He attempts to systematize, as broadly and comprehensively as possible, main types of theological methods found in the twentieth century. He sees the twentieth- -century theology as a search for such a method of theological cognition which would dissolve the tensions between theory and practice, biblism (the Bible) and philosophism or scientism as well as the tension between faithfulness to tradition and adjustment to a human new mentality. He maintains that the contemporary theology should pay more attention to theory, biblism and faithfulness to tradition.

The article Theology and Philosophy is a record of a lecture given in 1968 on the occasion of Saint Thomas Aquinas's Feast at the Theological Seminary of Society of the Divine Word in Pieniężno/Poland. The present text is then stylistically different from the other and tries to render, at least partially, the brisk and sharp style in which Kamiński lectured. Taking the perspective of the epistemic (scientific) character of theology the paper addresses the following questions: should theology avail itself of philosophy?; if yes, what philosophy can or should theology be related with? and what kinds of connections between theology and philosophy are here at stake?

In the third group of articles first three papers were written together with Zofia J. Zdybicka. The initial article, The Method of Cognition of God. A Discussing Article, repeats some ideas expressed in the second paper, Cognizability of the Existence of God. We decided to publish both texts, because the one formulates various important ideas and develops issues absent in the other. The first part of the article On the Method of Cognition of God is devoted to the origin of the philosophical problem of God; the second part deals with the relations between arguments for the existence of God and the kind of justification proper to metaphysics. The authors consider philosophy of being to be the appropriate domain in which one should formulate and resolve the question of the existence of God. Moreover, this philosophy fulfills the requirements of rational cognition and beforehand it takes no theistic statements for granted. The existential philosophy of being (existential thomism) does not aim "to demonstrate" a priori the existence of God. It accepts His existence as the only necessary reason explaining the existence of beings which do not possess the existence from their own nature. The article treats theodicea and arguments for the existence of God as the integral part of the existential philosophy of being. The authors distinguish existential metaphysics both from science and from the Aristotelian cosmology (and other types of cosmology understood as scientific theories) on the basis of its methodological uniqueness. The main problem connected with formalization of the arguments for the existence of God (J. Salamucha) is the way in which the particular premises occurring in "evidential" arguments can be accepted and not the logical form of those arguments. In metaphysics any such "proof' is connected with intellectual intuition and evidence which are activities escaping formalization.

The article entitled A Response to Jan F. Drewnowski's Remarks is a comment on Jan F. Drewnowski's critical remarks concerning the article On the Method of Cognition of God published in the same volume of the journal "Znak"2. In this paper Kamiński and Zdybicka take up the problem of the method of classical philosophy, of the relationship between contemporary logic and classical philosophy and of the possibility of applying modern tools of logic for resolving classical philosophical problems. They claim that what should be taken into account in metaphysics are not only formal correctness but also non-formal correctness. This shows insufficiency of any extensional logic for philosophy.

The text Cognizability of the Existence of God contains epistemological and methodological considerations concerning various attempts at resolving the problem of whether there exists a rationally legitimate way of cognition of the existence of God. It aims also to indicate the procedure proper to this issue. The authors discuss contemporary attempts to resolve this problem and make a typology of particular views. They distinguish the following solutions: 1) those which allow for non-rational origins of cognition and for subjectivism (irrationalism, fideism, intuitionism, atheism and agnosticism belong in here); and 2) those which strive for rationality and objectivism in that cognition. In the latter group should those solutions be distinguish which (a) appeal to science (non-autonomous solutions) from those (b) which do not appeal to science and are purely philosophical (autonomous solutions). The authors pay closer attention to the view offered by existential thomism in the context of rules concerning proper philosophy to investigate the problem of the cognizability of God. When characterizing the peculiar character of justification in metaphysics Kamiński and Zdybicka present Salamucha's effort to transpose the metaphysical argument from motion" to the formal logical language.

The next two papers take up the problem of relations between philosophy and science in connection with problems concerning the existence of God. They are Kammski's voices in a discussion upon Professor Kazimierz Klosak's lectures. Kamiński demonstrates methodological conditions of different answers to this question, conditions which are rooted in the specific character of science and metaphysics, and in different ways of understanding the concept of teleology by scientists and metaphysicians. He takes up the problem of relations between philosophy and science (physics) and evaluates the fact that data (beliefs) produced by contemporary physics are employed in the kinetic argument for the existence of God.

The short statement concerning maximalistic postulates formulated with regard to any philosophy of God throughout the history of epistemology includes some remarks on epistemic value of the thomistic philosophy of God. In the article Knowledge of God and Types of Rational Knowledge Stanisław Kamiński formulates a requirement that knowledge of God is to be rational, i. e. that it should be knowledge which meets optimal criteria of valuable knowledge while pluralism of types of knowledge is retained. Any philosophical knowledge of God should be realistic, apodictic, absolutely reliable, categorical, ultimately justified, discursive (non-direct), analogico-transcendental, and - this is a pragmatic requirement - well adapt- ed to the mentality of contemporary people but without violating the previously indicated requirements. The philosophy of God developed as a piece of the existential theory of being fulfills to the greatest degree these maximalistic conditions.

The paper Fundamental Aspects of the Cognition of God mainly deals with the problem of methods employed for cognition of God. The author claims that the specifically philosophical knowledge of the essence and attributes of God is obtained discursively by providing an ultimate explanation of the reality. He defends the view that the general-existential approach in philosophical cognition of God is the only way which leads to the thesis 'God exists'.

The text In Search of Adequate Philosophical Grounds of a Worldviexv contains Kamiński's recollections of Cardinal Karol Wojtyła.

Prepared and translated by Monika Walczak and Andrzej Bronk

1 The first volume of The Collected Papers, How to do Philosophy? Studies in Methodology of Classical Philosophy (Lublin 1989) contains four articles: Epistemologico-theological Problems of Philosophical Knowledge of God (p. 195-227), The Issue of the Absolute in Scientistic Philosophy (p. 229-240), Philosophy of Religion and Philosophy of God (s. 241- -247), Does Philosophy Serve Theology?, (p. 373-380); the third volume, Method and Language. Studies in Semiotics and the Philosophy of Science (Lublin 1994) contains two articles: A Method in Theology (p. 465-483) and Methodological Peculiarity of Theological Knowledge (p. 485-499).

2 Remarks on the Polemical Paper by Stanisław Kamiński and Zofia J. Zdybicka On the Method of Cognition of the Existence of God "Znak" 17 (1965) nr 128-129, p. 346-355; and also J. F. Drewnowski, Philosophy and Precision, Lublin 1996, p. 224-233.


Table of contents
    • Introduction 5
    • From Perception to a Worldview 13
    • The Worldview and Faith 33
    • On a Discussion Concerning Scientific Character of Theology 39
    • Conceptual Apparatus of Theology and Philosophy 45
    • Is It a Theological Anthropology? On the Subject Matter of the Contemporary Catholic Theology 53
    • Function of Philosophy in Church Sciences 65
    • Definition of Religion and the Types of the Studies on Religion (co-author: Zofia J. Zdybicka) 69
      • § 1. The Provisional Typology Common Definitions of Religion 71
      • § 2. Religion as a Subject Matter of Different Sciences 88
      • § 3. An Attempt of Arrangement Definitions of Religion in Consideration of Types of Studies on Religion 118
    • Rational Factors in Modern Science and Theology. Methodological
    • Aspects 125
      • § 1. How Is the Theoretical Element Accepted in the Basis of Science? 127
      • § 2. What Is Character of Theoretical Thinking in Science? 128
      • § 3. What Function is Fulfilled by the Theoretical Factors in Science? 128
      • § 4. Methodological Types of Contemporary Theology 131
      • § 5. Essentiality of the Theoretical Stage for Complete Theology 132
      • § 6. The Role of the Theoretical Factors in Theology 133
    • The Review of the Discussion on the Paper "Epistemologico-methodological Remarks on Theology" 135
    • Contemporary Catholic Theology. An Attempt at Methodological Characteristic 139
      • § 1. A Rise of Methods to Pursue Theology 140
      • § 2. Attempts of Giving Typology of Methods to Pursue Theology 146
    • Theology and Philosophy 157
      • § 1. Essentiality of Connection Between Theology and Philosophy 157
      • § 2. Philosophy Which Theology Can Unite With and Should Unite With 160
      • § 3. A Characteristic of Connection Between Theology and Philosophy 168
    • On the Method of Cognition of God. A Debating Article (co-author: Zofia J. Zdybicka) 179
      • § 1. The Origin of the Philosophical Problem of God 181
      • § 2. Problem of "Proofs" and Type of Justification in Metaphysics 188
      • § 3. Didactic Conclusions 200
    • A Response to Jan F. Drewnowski's Remarks (co-author: Zofia J. Zdybicka) 205
      • § 1. Problem of Method of the Classical Philosophy 205
      • § 2. The Relation of the Contemporary Logic to the Classical Philosophy 208
      • § 3. Methodological Character of the Proof of God's Existence 211
      • § 4. Responses to Particular Objections 212
    • Cognizability of the Existence of God (co-author: Zofia J. Zdybicka) 215
      • § 1. Contemporary Attempts to Resolve 217
      • § 2. A Choice of Proper Philosophy 233
      • § 3. A Form of Justification of God's Existence 245
    • Kaminski's Voice in a Discussion upon Professor Kazimierz Kłósak's Lecture 259
    • The Address, Opening a Discussion on Professor Kazimierz Klosak's Lecture 263
    • Comments on Central Problems of the Philosophy of God 271
    • Knowledge of God and Types of Rational Knowledge 275
      • § 1. Types of Rational Knowledge 276
      • § 2. Postulates Put Knowledge of God 279
      • § 3. A Proper Type of Rational Knowledge of God 281
    • Fundamental Aspects of Cognition of God 287
  • Annex
  • Searcher of the Adequate Philosophical Grounds of a Worldview 295
  • Worldview - Religion - Theology. Summary 297
  • Index of Names 305


In Polish