Richard Oxenberg
Emory University (PhD)
This work is a revised version of my dissertation, originally presented in 2002. It explores questions of God and faith in the context of Martin Heidegger's phenomenological ontology, as developed in Being and Time. One problem with traditional philosophical approaches to the question of God is their tendency to regard God's existence as an objective datum, which might be proven or disproven through logical argumentation. Since Kant, such arguments have largely been dismissed as predicated on a priori assumptions whose legitimacy cannot be substantiated. This dismissal has led to a widening divorce between 'faith' and 'reason,' as the rational grounds for faith have come under increasing, and radical, attack. Heidegger's phenomenological ontology provides us a new approach to the question of faith by showing that concernful relations lie at the heart of our apprehension of Being. This affords us a new way of approaching the question of God philosophically; one which pursues this question, not in terms of metaphysical categories, but in terms of the existential concerns central to human life. At the same time that Heidegger allows us this new approach, however, his existential analyses seem to deny any legitimacy to religious faith. For the Heidegger of Being and Time, the human being is 'Being-towards-death,' i.e., essentially enclosed in finitude, whereas for religion the human being has an essential relation to the infinitude of God. This work, then, has a twofold purpose: It seeks, first, to explore the meaning of God and faith as these may be understood in the terms provided by Heidegger's phenomenological ontology. It seeks, second, to examine the way in which that ontology might be challenged and revised through a religious conception of human Being.
Keywords Heidegger  Being and Time  Bible  Religion  Christianity  Judaism  Phenomenology  Theology  God  Continental Philosophy
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References found in this work BETA

On the Essence of Truth.Martin Heidegger - 1998 - New Yearbook for Phenomenology and Phenomenological Philosophy 9:274-287.
Metaphysica.W. D. Aristotle & Ross - 1908 - Clarendon Press.

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