Freedom and Intimacy in von Balthasar's Theo-logic 1
From the perspective of Christian theology, divine freedom is the paradigm of human freedom, but it is also completely unlike ours in its infinity. This is the paradox of the analogy of being: in its infinity, the Archetype of our being is also completely other. In contrast, likeness between contingent beings is limited in that each being is individuated yet similar to those of like species. No matter how alike beings are, “unlikeness” increases with generic distance. At the asymptotic limit, the Archetype is infinitely unlike us, but remains the ultimate blueprint for each being. If as Archetype, God’s infinite freedom is qualitative of infinite being, then all finite beings must possess freedom to some finite degree. Herein lies the problem treated in this paper: how can both
animate and inanimate being possess freedom? To answer this question, the author draws upon the first volume of part two of Hans Urs von Balthasar’s sixteen volume trilogy, Theo-logic: The Truth of the World.
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INTERNATIONAL INSTITUTE FOR HERMENEUTICS / INSTITUT INTERNATIONAL D'HERMÉNEUTIQUE