This essay examines the relevance of eschatological themes to the political theory of Michael Walzer. A distinctive eschatological hope is identified, which functions as a guide to thought throughout Walzer's writings, even though he seldom expresses it (and sometimes denies it). This analysis of Walzer's work demonstrates that eschatology is relevant to the contemporary discussion of justice, and conversely, that contemporary political theory can be a guide for the construction and evaluation of theological doctrines of eschatology. Any (...) class='Hi'>eschatology that enters into political debate in a modern, pluralistic society like the United States, however, must have at least one important characteristic: it must be informed by a profound sense of limitation. (shrink)
Compared with the related western studies, Russian ecological philosophy has paid more attention to Eschatology and represented a unique path of thinking, that is, an intense rational conception and a religious consciousness. In the era of globalization, Russian ecological Eschatology, as an active response of Russian ideology to the world ecosystem crisis, contains a strong eschatological emotion and a spirit of salvation. It mainly deals with the sin and punishment between the nature and human being as well as (...) the endeavor of atoning humanity. The first part of the essay traces back the origin and evolution of eschatology and ecology in the two systems of Russian philosophy—humanism and cosmism, with a trimming of the original relationship between the ecological eschatology and the traditional eschatology. The second part explores the way of salvation for the human being in crisis directed by Russian ecological philosophy, which is nourished by the profound spiritual tradition. For the human being, the way of civilization lies in a rebuild of rationality by faith. The goal of faith is to achieve a self-completeness in morality by a heart-open through God. In this way, the destiny of the world may be changed. This is the only hope of the human being and, therefore, a new chapter of salvation for our times. (shrink)
Introduction: divine violence and political fetishism -- The political theology of sovereignty -- In the maw of sovereignty -- Benjamin's dissipated eschatology -- Waiting for justice -- Forgiveness, judgment and sovereign decision -- The Hebrew republic -- Conclusion : the anarchist hypothesis.
Many contemporary theologies have given considerable attention to the inbreaking work of God whereby the Spirit imbues creation with life and vitality, but in the process the seriousness of the destructive forces that plague the world has been overlooked. This oversight not only has significant theological consequences, but it also generates a tension with scientific postulates about physical reality. Paradoxically, increasing complexity, including emergent life systems, arise in spite of the overarching conditions. I posit from a theological perspective that the (...) Spirit acts within the world to generate pockets of organization out of disorder. The Spirit not only was present and active at initial creation but also continues to act within the cosmos, sustaining the natural order and giving rise to innovative acts of creation. The world, which groans for and anticipates transformation, experiences local decreases in entropy as proleptic events of God's inbreaking kingdom. This theological hypothesis provides the framework for considering an eschatological response to the world's decay. (shrink)
Abstract This is a study of the figure of the ?last God? as it appears in Martin Heidegger's Beiträge zur Philosophie. In what sense is this figure related to philosophy of religion as traditionally understood? It is certainly closely related to the question of the relation of time and eternity. Heidegger's earliest accounts of the relation between time and eternity are examined, and Heidegger's reflections in the Beitrage are examined in the context of the accusation of ?theosophy? which Heidegger levels (...) against the most prominent of the ancient thinkers of time and eternity, namely Plotinus. (shrink)
Recent discussions of theorigins of the thermodynamical temporal asymmetry (thearrow of time) by Huw Price and others arecritically assessed. This serves as amotivation for consideration of relationshipbetween thermodynamical and cosmologicalcauses. Although the project of clarificationof the thermodynamical explanandum is certainlywelcome, Price excludes another interestingoption, at least as viable as the sort ofAcausal-Particular approach he favors, andarguably more in the spirit of Boltzmannhimself. Thus, the competition of explanatoryprojects includes three horses, not two. Inaddition, it is the Acausal-Particular approachthat could benefit enormously (...) from dissociationfrom fanciful ideas of low-entropy futureboundary conditions entertained by Price. Novelrevolutionary developments in observationalcosmology, as well as in the nascentastrophysical discipline of physicaleschatology, have obliterated such hypotheses.Also, the Acausal-Anthropic approach wepropose, offers another clear instance ofdisteleological nature of the anthropicprinciple. (shrink)
Ted Sider’s Proportionality of Justice condition requires that any two moral agents instantiating nearly the same moral state be treated in nearly the same way. I provide a countermodel in supervaluation semantics to the proportionality of justice condition. It is possible that moral agents S and S' are in nearly the same moral state, S' is beyond all redemption and S is not. It is consistent with perfect justice then that moral agents that are not beyond redemption go determinately to (...) heaven and moral agents that are beyond all redemption go determinately to hell. I conclude that moral agents that are in nearly the same moral state may be treated in very unequal ways. (shrink)
Traditional utilitarianism, when applied, implies a surprising prediction about the future, viz., that all experience of pleasure and pain must end once and for all, or infinitely dwindle. Not only is this implication surprising, it should render utilitarianism unacceptable to persons who hold any of the following theses: that evaluative propositions may not imply descriptive, factual propositions; that evaluative propositions may not imply contingent factual propositions about the future; that there will always exist beings who experience pleasure or pain.
The paper investigates the role played by ethical deliberation and ethical judgment in Wittgenstein's early thought in the light of twentieth?century German legal philosophy. In particular the theories of the phenomenologists Adolf Reinach, Wilhelm Schapp, and Gerhart Husserl are singled out, as resting on ontologies which are structurally similar to that of the Tractatus: in each case it is actual and possible Sachverhalte which constitute the prime ontological category. The study of the relationship between the states of affairs depicted, e.g., (...) in the sentences of a legal trial and prior fact?complexes to which these may correspond suggests one possible connecting link between the logical and ontological sections of the Tractatus and the ethical reflections appearing at the end. It is argued that the latter can best be understood in terms of the idea of a ?last judgment? (with its associated ethical rewards and punishments) which would relate to the world as a whole as a penal trial relates to individual complexes of facts. (shrink)
This paper examines the role of the concluding myth of the Phaedo in the context of the dialogue as a whole, arguing that the myth's exploration of the relationship between action, condition of soul and form of life provides valuable information about Plato's conception of the kind of political environment necessary for human flourishing. It identifies three features of the myth essential to this exploration: its self-critical construction of the perspective of the makers of this myth, its focus on the (...) conditions under which violent deeds are committed and its envisaging of the form of human community necessary for the expiation of such deeds. El artículo examina el papel del mito final del Fedón dentro del contexto de la totalidad del diálogo y argumenta que la exploración que hace el mito de la relación entre acción, condición del alma y forma de vida brinda importante información acerca de la concepción platónica del tipo de entorno político que favorece el florecimiento del ser humano. Identifica tres rasgos del mito que son esenciales para dicha exploración: su construcción autocrítica de la perspectiva de los creadores del mito, su enfoque en las condiciones en las que se cometen actos violentos y su visión de una forma de comunidad humana necesaria para la expiación de tales actos. (shrink)
In this paper, I review evidence which strongly supports the claim that life will eventually be extinguished from the universe. I then examine the ethical implications of this evidence, focusing, in particular, on the question whether it is a bad thing that life will eventually die out.
The garden, the fire, and Islamic origins -- Visions of the afterworld -- Material culture and an Islamic ethic -- Other worldly landscapes and earthly realities -- Humanity, servants, and companions -- Individualized gardens and expanding fires -- Legacy of gardens -- Epilogue.
The year 1492 is only the last in a series of “ends” that inform the representation of medieval Spain in modern Jewish historical and literary discourses. These ends simultaneously mirror the traumas of history and shed light on the discursive process by which hermetic boundaries are set between periods, communities, and texts. This book addresses the representation of the twelfth and thirteenth centuries as the end of al-Andalus (Islamic Spain). Here, the end works to locate and separate Muslim from Christian (...) Spain, Jews from Arabs, philosophy from Kabbalah, Kabbalah from literature, and texts from contexts. The book offers a reading of texts that emerge from its Andalusi, Jewish, and Arabic cultural sphere: Maimonides’ Guide of the Perplexed; the major text of Kabbalah, the Zohar; and the Arabic rhymed prose narrative of Ibn al-Astarkuwi. The author argues that these texts are written in a language that disrupts the possibility of locating it in a pre-existing cultural situation, a recognizable literary tradition, or a particular genre. At stake are issues – texts and contexts – that have gained particular urgency in the writings of such recent thinkers as Walter Benjamin, Jacques Derrida, Giorgio Agamben, Jean-Luc Nancy, and Avital Ronell. The book reads the place and taking place of language, interrogating the notion of disappearing contexts and the view that language is derivative of its true place, the context that, having ended, is mourned as silent and lost. (shrink)
The main title of Robert J. Russell's Cosmology from Alpha to Omega: The Creative Mutual Interaction of Theology and Science catches the substance of the essays; the subtitle his methodological vision. The mutualis modest as far as the influence from theology on science goes; in no way is Russell curtailing the pursuit of science. Driven by intellectual honesty, he holds that in the end religious convictions will have to stand the test of compatibility with scientific knowledge. And as a Christian (...) he believes core beliefs of Christianity, reformulated as needed, will be able to stand this test. The essays address the origin and contingency of our universe in relation to belief in creation, and his proposal for noninterventionist objective divine action. For him a stumbling block is natural evil; the evolutionary intelligibility of evil falls short of what would be desirable theologically. As steps toward an adequate eschatology Russell seeks to develop a more complex understanding of temporality, and proposes to understand the resurrection of Jesus as the First Instantiation of a New Law of the New Creation. This area is more in tension with current science, but that could be expected when one moves from creation to redemption. Within his self-imposed boundaries, these essays are well informed and well argued, and together they provide a sincere and sustained research program. (shrink)
The Hebrew Bible: glimpses of immortality -- Early post-biblical literature: gateways to heaven and hell -- The mishnah: who will merit the world to come? -- The Talmud: what happens in the next world? -- Medieval Jewish philosophy: faith and reason -- Mysticism: reincarnation in Kabbalah -- Modernity: what do we believe? -- The Messiah: the eternal thread of hope.
pt. 1. lecture 1. Meet the beast ; lecture 2. Medieval formulations ; lecture 3. The Reformation, the apocalypse revived ; lecture 4. Prophecy and science I, Francis Bacon ; lecture 5. John Milton and freedom of the press ; lecture 6. New Heaven, new earth, modern democracy ; lecture 7. Andrew Marvell, poet of the Republic ; lecture 9. The universe as matter, the universe as spirit -- pt. 2. lecture 10. The hope of Israel, the origins of toleration (...) ; lecture 11. Anti-Antichrist, the limits of prophecy ; lecture 12. Prophecy and Science II, prophecy and progress ; lecture 13. The apocalypse and the American Revolution ; lecture 14. Antichrist and the post-apocalyptic age, cold war ideology ; lecture 15. Antichrist and the post-apocalyptic age, Martin Luther King, Jr. ; lecture 16. Antichrist and the post-apocalyptic age, belief against politics. (shrink)
There is a single unified conception of religious faith in Kierkegaard's Fear and Trembling and Concluding Unscientific Postscript: existential faith is absolute trust in an eschatological promise, i.e. a miraculous realization of ethical ideals that is beyond all human power to accomplish or even predict. Faith in this sense has the precondition of "infinite resignation," which is a purified state of ethical willing in which the agent accepts her/his own inability to actualize the ethical, outwardly or inwardly. This condition is (...) explored extensively by Climacus in this discussion of "existential pathos," which shows why the resigned agent has to trust in an absolute source of eschatological possibilities to guarantee the ultimate meaningfulness of his/her ethical striving. The distinction between Religiousness A and B, along with different senses of "the absurd" and "the absolute paradox" can all be explained in terms of different kinds of eschatological possibility. /// Segundo o autor do artigo, há uma única concepção do religioso presente nas obras Temor e Tremor e Postscript Conclusivo e Não-Científico de Søren Kierkegaard, concepção essa fundada na ideia de que a fé existencial consiste numa confiança absoluta na promessa escatológica, ou seja, numa realização miraculosa de ideais éticos que estão para além de todo e qualquer poder humano de os realizar ou mesmo sequer de os antecipar. Neste sentido, a fé tem como condição prévia a "resignação infinita", a qual consiste num estado purificado de vontade ética em que o agente aceita a sua própria incapacidade de actualizar o ético, seja isso de forma exterior ou interior. Esta condição é extensivamente explorada por Climacus na sua discussão do "pathos existencial", o qual mostra precisamente por que razão o agente resignado tem que confiar numa fonte absoluta de possibilidades escatológicas em ordem a poder fazer face ao mais radical sem-sentido inerente ao seu processo de actualização do ético. Assim, o artigo pretende mostrar até que ponto a distinção kierkegaardiana entre Religiosidade A e B, bem como os diferentes sentidos do "absurdo" e do "paradoxo absolute" podem ser explicados em termos dos diferentes tipos de possibilidade escatológica que o pensamento pode identificar. (shrink)
Wolfhart Pannenberg's eschatological ontology has been criticised for undermining the goodness and reality of finite creaturely differentiation. Drawing on David Bentley Hart's recent ontological proposal, this article explores the critique of Pannenberg's ontology, and offers a defence of Pannenberg's depiction of the relationship between difference and totality, especially as it is presented in his 1988 work, Metaphysics and the Idea of God. In this work, Pannenberg articulates a structured relationship between difference and totality in which individual finite particularities are preserved (...) and affirmed within a coherent semantic whole. Creaturely differences are not sublated or eliminated in the eschatological totality, but they are integrated into a harmonious totality of meaning. This view of the semantic function of totality can be further clarified by drawing an analogy between Pannenberg's ontological vision and Robert W. Jenson's model of the eschatological consummation as a narrative conclusion to the drama of finite reality. (shrink)
This article evaluates Emmanuel Levinas's novel "ethical metaphysics" of interpersonal relations from a religious perspective. Levinas presents a unique version of agape ethics that can be evaluated in terms of a number of the dilemmas that have traditionally attended Christian discussions of neighbor-love. Because Levinas's analysis makes our responsibility for other persons depend on their eschatological significance, it has the same problems that hamper all theories of neighbor-love that lack a sufficient role for reciprocity.