The question of the transcendence of God has traditionally been thought in terms of the difference between pantheism, which affirms that God is wholly "within" the world, and theism, which affirms that God is both "within" and "outside" the world, both immanent and transcendent. Against Heidegger’s critique of onto-theology and the general postmodern concern for respecting and preserving the difference of the other, Merold Westphal seeks to rethink divine transcendence in relation to modes of human self-transcendence. Touching upon Spinoza, Hegel, Augustine, Pseudo-Dionysius, Aquinas, Barth, Kierkegaard, Levinas, Derrida, and Marion, Westphal’s work centers around a critique of onto-theology, the importance of alterity, the decentered self, and the autonomous transcendental ego. Westphal’s phenomenology of faith sets this book into the main currents of Continental philosophy of religion today.
About the Author
Merold Westphal is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at Fordham University. He is the author of God, Guilt, and Death (IUP, 1987) and History and Truth in Hegel’s Phenomenology, 3rd ed. (IUP, 1998), and editor of Postmodern Philosophy and Christian Thought (IUP, 2000).
Table of Contents
Part 1. Onto-theology and the Need to Transcend Cosmological Transcendence
1. Heidegger: How Not to Speak About God
2. Spinoza: The Onto-theological Pantheism of Nature
3. Hegel: The Onto-theological Pantheism of Spirit
Part 2. Epistemic Transcendence - The Divine Mystery
4. Augustine and Pseudo-Dionysius: Negative Theology as a Break with the Onto-Theological Project
5. Pseudo-Dionysius and Aquinas: How to Speak Nevertheless about God - the Analogy of Being
6. Barth: How to Speak Nevertheless about God - the Analogy of Faith
Part 3. Ethical and Religious Transcendence - The Divine Imperative
7. Levinas: Beyond Onto-Theology to Love of Neighbor
8. Kierkegaard: Beyond Onto-Theology to Love of God