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By Gabriel Vahanian

Tillich and the hot spiritual Paradigm conducts a thorough analyzing of Tillich's suggestion that demonstrates its importance for modern theology. major topics equivalent to the secular and the sacred, observe and being, and kairos and utopia are tested and critiqued. This artistic engagement with Tillich's theology offers new assets for spiritual and theological mirrored image.

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Extra info for Tillich and the New Religious Paradigm (Contemporary Religious Thought)

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And grace is a gift that liberates its recipient from the giver, and such is the meaning of liturgical sacramental representation, an eschatic representation through and through: God is all in all when therefore there is no temple in the New Jerusalem. The second point concerns Tillich’s refusal of secularism, which paradoxically melts into a refusal of socialism, though less on account of the latter’s utopianism than of its deviant humanism. ), which not only feeds on the basic ambiguity of the human reality but also diverts it from its kairos.

But Tillich, to say the least, is rather parsimonious in his handling of this aspect of the problem. The ambiguities of his thought regarding the sacred are not dispelled by his existential ambivalence about the secular or, for that matter, about utopia and the utopianism of a language for which, especially with the Reformers, God is word rather than a being. It is no less obvious, however, that Paul Tillich is homing in on and is beckoned by the quest for a new religious paradigm. And it is also equally obvious that, though for the sake of a concept of God as Being-itself and understood so literally as to be denied any symbolic power, Tillich is prevented from ultimately giving up ontotheology in favor of a theology squarely rooted in the Word — instead of merely using words; that is, in favor of a theology rooted in the worlding of the Word and attuned both to the incarnation and to the verbal condition of the human.

That Tillich chose not to be sensitive to this contention perhaps lies, I venture to suggest, at the root of the ambiguities his thinking continues to harbor throughout his intellectual migration from the Dogmatik to the Systematic Theology as well as from Germany to America. Troeltsch, however, is not the only thinker Tillich shies away from in spite of their many affinities. In an even more obvious fashion, Karl Barth is another—if not the other—par excellence. Talking about the secular, to be sure, one does not usually invoke any notion of grace.

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