Journal of Business Ethics

, Volume 145, Issue 4, pp 771–780 | Cite as

The Real Mystery of Positive Business: A Response from Christian Faith



I ask why an increasing number of business scholars today are drawn to an idea of “positive business” that they cannot account for scientifically. I answer that it is because they are attracted to the real mystery of positive business which is its incomprehensible and unspeakable divinity. I begin by asking why the research literature has yet to speak of positive business plainly and with one voice. I find that it lacks for the right words because it comes to human being in business as a science attuned to its objects rather than as a religion attuned to its spirit. Next, I say what I can about the real mystery of business, keeping in mind that we can say about it only what we can say about God. This brings me at last to the Christian insight that human being, in business and everywhere else, is the mystery of Jesus Christ in whom we are reconciled to God. Business is positively human as it invites us to be as Christ, to be a fully human person in joyful communion with others in God. This, in sum, is how to speak plainly and with one voice of the positive business that our hearts desire but our science cannot say.


Positive business Being God Metaphysics Thomas Aquinas Christian humanism 



I thank JBE special issues editor Thomas Maak, guest editor Fr. Domenec Mele, two very capable anonymous reviewers, and my colleague and friend Jim Walsh for their invaluable contributions to this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of MichiganAnn ArborUSA

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