Idealistic Studies 9 (3):222-228 (1979)

At the outset of this paper, a couple of clarifications are in order: first of all, I will be concerned with the origin of the concept of God, not with the origin of various anthropomorphic depictions or purported incarnations of God, such as Osiris, Christ, Zeus, Krishna, or Azura-Mazda. Secondly, by the adjective “phenomenological” I mean to differentiate this analysis from other approaches which have a legitimacy of their own—the anthropological approach which is concerned with the sociocultural emergence of the notion of a divinity; the psychological approach which traces the God concept to responses to the environment or to inner needs, drives, or archetypes; the semantical approach which focuses on the problems of reference and denotation in god language; and so forth. That being said, however, I should also explain that I intend my approach to be “phenomenological” not in a kind of Husserlian sense, i.e., as concerned specifically with discovering certain a priori grounds for the notion of God in human subjectivity itself, but in a Kantian-Hegelian sense, which is somewhat wider. In this latter sense, “phenomenological” means “connected with the basic experience of subject-object distinction in consciousness, and with the exigencies, characteristics and/or dynamics of that distinction.”
Keywords Continental Philosophy  History of Philosophy
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ISBN(s) 0046-8541
DOI idstudies19799317
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