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He Who Is

He Who Is

A Study in Traditional Theism

By E. L. Mascall

Foreword by Robert MacSwain

264 pp

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About the Book

E. L. Mascall, in his introduction to the 1966 edition of He Who Is, writes that “one of its main purposes” is to “to argue that the real function of the famous Five Ways of St. Thomas Aquinas was not to provide five independent arguments for the existence of God from finite beings, but to manifest by five different expositions the character of finite beings as radically dependent on a transcendent, self-existent infinite being.” Subjects discussed along the way include creation, mysticism, the relation between reason and revelation, the doctrine of analogy and the non-Christian religions; and an attempt is made to find the true status of religious experience as an element in rational theism.

This Angelico Press edition contains a new foreword by The Rev. Dr. Robert MacSwain, who writes that “I can think of at least three reasons why He Who Is should still be read by a new generation of theological students. First, despite its age, it remains a substantial contribution to the study of Thomism. Second, its primary themes of the existence and nature of God are of perennial and vital interest. Third, it exemplifies the ecumenical endeavor that was at the heart of Eric Mascall’s life and work, namely, that of an Anglican theologian seeking to learn not only from members of his own communion but from Roman Catholic and Protestant thinkers and from the Orthodox tradition as well.”



Praise for the first edition:


“A sound piece of scholarship… deserves to exert a wide influence.”

—Times Literary Supplement


“While there is no evasion of philosophical subtleties, he makes judicial concessions to the ordinary reader by consigning the most technical discussions to footnotes, and by illuminating his argument with vivid and sometimes diverting illustrations.”

—Church Times


“Extremely interesting and even exhilarating… is written clearly and simply, and can be appreciated by the serious reader who would not claim any profound knowledge of philosophy.”

—Church of England Newspaper

About the Author

Eric Lionel Mascall was Professor of Historical Theology at King's College London, and the Church of England's leading Thomist theologian. A member of the Oratory of the Good Shepherd, he also taught at Lincoln Theological College and Oxford, before retiring to the parish of St Mary's, Bourne Street, London.

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