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Logos and Existence

The Relationship of Philosophy and Theology in the Thought of Paul Tillich

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Donald R. Ferrel

During the course of his career as a Christian theologian, Paul Tillich struggled to understand and state clearly the relationship between theology and philosophy. Tillich's conception of philosophy was profoundly shaped by the vision of classical Greek thought in which philosophy is the detached search of the thinker for the objective, universal, immutable, and neccessary object of thought.
Theology, in contrast to the detached thinking of philosophy. Tillich argued, is existential thinking, answering «the question of being» philosophy raises. After a close analysis of Tillich's attempt to relate philosophy and theology as detached and existential thinking, this study concludes that Tillich is unable to sustain this distinction and cannot be understood as an existential theologian.
Contents: The Foundational Notions of Tillich's Thought: the Principle of Finitude; the Unconditionedness of Being-itself; the Unity of Unconditioned and Conditioned Being. Philosophy and Theology: Tillich's Conception of their Relationship.