Divine Transcendence

Religious Studies 20 (3):377 - 387 (1984)
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Abstract

representations, for the unconditioned transcendent surpasses every possible conception of a being, including even the conception of a Supreme Being... It is the religious function of atheism ever to remind us that the religious act has to do with the unconditioned transcendent, and that the representations of the Unconditioned are not objects concerning whose existence.., a discussion would be possible. The word >God= involves a double meaning: it connotes the unconditioned transcendent, the ultimate, and also an object somehow endowed with qualities and actions. The first is not figurative or symbolic, but is rather in the strictest sense what it is said to be. The second, however, is really symbolic, figurative. = Tillich=s view on transcendence is a quite radical view. However, his view serves to illustrate two things: (i) the importance of the concept of transcendence in discussions about God, and (ii) the implications for religious language resulting from God..

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Jonathan L. Kvanvig
Washington University in St. Louis

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