Rahnerian Freedom

Proceedings of the Xxii World Congress of Philosophy 20:51-68 (2008)
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Abstract

This paper analyzes Karl Rahner’s understanding of human freedom and transcendental anthropology. Karl Rahner is one of the most famous Catholic theologian and philosopher of the twentieth century. His transcendental anthropology is a philosophical understanding of the human person grounded in the basic tenets of Christian thought. In relation to this, Rahner speaks of freedom in two ways: categorical and transcendental freedom. By transcendental freedom, Rahner speaks of freedom as an essential capacity constitutive of the human person. By categorical freedom, he refers to the human person’s ability to use the essential capacity of freedom. From this distinction, the author discusses Rahner’s controversial understanding of analogous sin. In here, the author questions the role of freedom and the reality of sin. He concludes by articulating the implications of this understanding of freedom to philosophical anthropology.

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