Christian theology, based on the historical revelation that God is the Creator of all things, assumes that we can know the truth, love the goodness, and delight in the beauty of all things because the Creator first knows and loves and delights in all creation. In Toward a Theology of Beauty, Father Navone explains that the Creator, Happiness Itself, knows truth and loves goodness and delights in beauty; consequently, whatever proceeds from the Creatorall creationis knowable, lovable, and enjoyable. We can therefore see the Creator in the truth and goodness and beauty of all things, and we can have communion with Happiness Itself in knowing and loving and delighting in all things.
Father Navone uses basic points of reference, such as divine revelation and Jesus' farewell discourse, to explore a theology of beauty. Chapters are "Creation and the Beauty of All Things," "In the Image and Likeness of Beauty Itself," "The Power of Beauty," "Beauty: God's Delight," "In the Light of God's Beauty," "The Christian Experience of Beauty," and "Theology of Beauty: RTsumT of Presuppositions."
All those interested in the Catholic tradition's approach to the splendor/glory of the divine beauty in human life will find this book rewarding. It communicates a theological appreciation of our graced ability to contemplate the divine beauty in all things. Toward a Theology of Beautyeads us to the joy of Christian contemplationto delight in the splendor of the divine love in all things.
John Navone, S.J., is professor of theology at the Gregorian University in Rome and at the Seattle University summer school. He has written two other books published by The Liturgical Press: Seeking God in Story, and Self-Giving and Sharing: The Trinity and Human Fulfillment.