Jacob Boehme and Paul Tillich on Trinity and God: Similarities and Differences

Religious Studies 31 (4):429-445 (1995)
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Paul Tillich borrows central motifs in his trinitarian theology from Jacob Boehme, the seventeenth-century German mystic. Tillich draws a picture of divine life as embroiled in a conflict of opposites between the abyss and the light of the Logos. Boehme also depicted divine life as engaged in inner turmoil. But, unlike Tillich, Boehme 's experience and imagery suggest that the eternal divine self-contradiction could only be solved in human consciousness and history. The paper suggests that trinitarian thinkers such as Tillich cannot give to creation and its processes the same seriousness as does Boehme who implicates humanity in the redemption of divinity through the task imposed on it as the sole locus in which the divine opposites can be differentiated and consciously integrated.



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