Revelation and Religion

  • Herbert Henry Farmer
1949 to 1950
University of Glasgow

Revelation and Religion is the first course of Gifford Lectures presented by H. H. Farmer in 1950. The work offers a theologically Christian interpretation of the universal phenomenon of human religious experience and seeks to find a common ground for all religions in the revelation of God in the incarnate Christ.

Systematic Theology

  • Paul Tillich
1953 to 1954
University of Aberdeen

For Tillich, theology is required to serve the needs of the Christian Church. This involves both stating the truth of the Christian message and providing a satisfactory interpretation of this truth for each generation. These lectures establish a close correlation with philosophy through the organisation of subject matter in each section. The main theological problems discussed illustrate the systematic consequences of this correlation.

The Relevance of Science

  • Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker
1959 to 1961
University of Glasgow

In The Relevance of Science, Weizsäcker engaged in a dialogue with intellectuals more than with the specialists in the fields he discusses. He diagnoses the ambivalence of the scientific civilization in place at the time the lectures were given.

He also aims to present practical solutions to problems raised in his theoretical work.

First, he presents an account of history from a philosophical standpoint. Then he outlines his own philosophical ideas as a basis for further discussion. He discusses the history of Western thought by examining the history of nature, seeing his lectures not primarily as giving rise to practical advice but as helping to develop our consciousness.

Benedikt Bock
University of Glasgow

Beyond Ideology

  • Ninian Roderick Smart
1979 to 1980
University of Edinburgh

In Beyond Ideology, Ninian Smart faces up to the reality that in the world of humans there exist different Beyonds, or at the very least there are different maps of the world hereafter. From this it becomes clear that the problem of the plurality of religions cannot be left unaddressed. Smart’s consideration of the plurality of religions is completed in a much broader perspective than is usual.

Action and Belief

  • Thomas Malcolm Knox
1966 to 1968
University of Aberdeen

Sir Malcolm Knox delivered his Gifford Lectures in 1966–1968 at the University of Aberdeen. The series was published in two separate volumes under the titles Action and A Layman’s Quest. Knox takes up Lord Gifford’s requirements in the first series of lectures (Action, published in 1968) through a treatment of action (as the core element in ethics) and its connection with religious belief.


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