Econokenosis: Three Meanings of Kenosis in post-modern Thought;

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Abstract

Among contemporary philosophers who have, in many different ways, turned to the study of religion, one often finds an interesting tendency: the tendency to rescue religion, however minimal or reticent this rescue operation might be. They try to save something of/in religion that should be kept ‘safe’ in their view from the immense criticism that religion has been subjected to in modern thinking, with which they otherwise – apart from this small remainder to be saved, this ‘rest’ as some of the authors in question call it – fully agree. My hypothesis is that this saving-something-of/in-religion usually follows the ambivalent structure and discourse of kenosis. Kenosis can be described as one of the key notions that evoke the complex relationship between God and humanity, between transcendence and immanence, between the sacred and the profane, between the Other and the Self - in short, the religious relationship, or the specific and enigmatic relationship we call religion. Kenosis, originally an ancient Christian notion derived from Paul’s letter to the Philippians (2: 6-8), is used to refer to two entirely opposite meanings with regard to the religious relationship. It is this ambiguity of kenosis that interests me in particular in what follows.
Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationLetting Go: Rethinking Kenosis
PublisherPeter Lang
Number of pages26
ISBN (Electronic)3-906769-24-0
ISBN (Print)3-906769-24-0
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2002

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