By Werner G. Jeanrond
This publication explores different dimensions of Christian love. It argues that each one expressions of affection are wrestling with the problem of otherness and accordingly with the event of transcendence. the improvement of Christian strategies of affection is mentioned with specific connection with the several horizons and the range of ways to like within the Bible, Augustine, medieval theology, Protestant agapetheology, Catholic techniques to wish, and modern philosophy and sociology. The dialogue of the wealthy and infrequently troublesome historical past of expressions of non-public, communal and spiritual love allows this learn to boost a serious and optimistic theology of Christian love for our time. This e-book demonstrates the range within the Christian culture of affection and therefore bargains a severe standpoint on past and current impositions of homogenous ideas of affection. The e-book invitations the reader to an in-depth exam of the opportunity of Christian love and its specific associations for the improvement of non-public and communal kinds of Christian discipleship. the normal separation among agape love and eroticism is triumph over in favour of an built-in version of affection that recognizes either God's present of affection and the possibility of each girl, guy and baby to give a contribution to the transformative praxis of affection in church and society.
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Nor will anybody doubt that loving and being loved both have to do with attitudes towards the other and the self. The question at stake at this point of our investigation, however, is whether emotion and attitude offer sufficient explanatory power for a comprehensive theology of love. It is interesting to note with Vincent Brümmer that ‘most of the comprehensive concepts of love developed within it [the Christian tradition] have been attitudinal rather than relational. 70 I agree with Brümmer that any reduction of love to the level of mere emotion would withdraw love from the horizon of commitment and responsibility and instead locate it in a horizon of arbitrariness and transience.
40 (204b). , p. 42 (205d–e). , p. 43 (206a). , p. 46 (208e). , pp. 46–7 (209b). 47 Plato, Phaedrus, trans. R. Heckforth, in The Collected Dialogues of Plato, ed. Edith Hamilton and Huntington Cairns, Bollington Series LXXI, Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1961, pp. 475–525, here p. 492 (245a–c). , pp. 499–500 (253d–254e). 49 Such is the life of the gods: It is there that true being dwells, without color or shape, that cannot be touched; reason alone, the soul’s pilot, can behold it, and all true knowledge is knowledge thereof.
495 (248e). , p. 501 (256b). See also Ammicht Quinn, ‘Erotik/Eros’, p. 254. 53 We shall have to return both to Augustine’s and to Nygren’s theology of love at a number of occasions in this book and in greater detail below in chapters 3 and 5 respectively. However, already at this point of our reflections, it might be useful to underline that Nygren was not critical as such of the sexual expression of human love. Instead his critique was directed against the erotic conviction that human beings could ever reach God through their own desire, mystical contemplation, ascent or action.