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Theses Towards a Trinitarian Ontology

Theses Towards a Trinitarian Ontology

By Klaus Hemmerle

Foreword by Dr. Rowan Williams

78 pp

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About the Book

Written in 1975 as a birthday greeting to the theologian Hans Urs von Balthasar, Klaus Hemmerle’s Theses Towards A Trinitarian Ontology is of the highest theological moment as a key source text for the recent widespread interest in the idea of a “Trinitarian ontology.” Drawing on Hemmerle’s deep familiarity with German Idealism, the Theses sketch an ontology beginning not from invariance, but from “self-giving,” from kenosis, and articulate a distinctively Trinitarian response to the aporias of early twenty-first-century thought—a response for which only Love can credibly be understood as the meaning of Being. 


“Hemmerle’s Theses are reflections on the gift, or more precisely, trinitarian self-giving to the world and human being. This trinitarian ontology is an answer to Heidegger and Hegel, as well as a step beyond neo-Scholasticism’s insistence on deductive method and on divine unity rather than on process and relation. Furthermore, Hemmerle’s trinitarian ontology has the capacity to unite theory and praxis, individual and community, church and world. His Theses also suggests the emergence of a contest within Catholicism between strict phenomenology (later given expression to by Jean-Luc Marion) and a looser phenomenology that requires ontological specification. It is not going too far to say that Hemmerle’s gift is itself a figure of the gift of which he speaks, and represents a genuine participation in it.”


“At last, Klaus Hemmerle’s crucial little work is fully available in English, in a fine translation. His vision of a fully trinitarian ontology points the way forward, not just for theology, but for thinking in general.”


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