Loyola University Maryland

Emerging Scholars

Philip G. Porter

God's Creative Creatures: Moving Toward a Contemplative Theology of Technology

(Oral Presentation)

My work is focused on the intersection of faith and technology. Specifically, I seek to determine how the phenomenon of information technology affects human cognition and why this might pose a problem for Christians. To do this I have drawn on philosophical, sociological, and theological reflections on modern technological advances. Using the theological anthropologies of SS. Augustine and Gregory of Nyssa I attempt to show how a hyper-contemporary problem like information technology can benefit from a careful reading of the Church Fathers. The pre-modern anthropologies of Augustine and Gregory take for granted the spiritual dimension of the human person. In my work, I show how the ascetic and contemplative practices they advocate as a result of this worldview can be put to good use in overcoming some of information technology's most deleterious effects.