The Glory of the Lord: A Theological Aesthetics, Volume 1: Seeing the Form Hardcover – 1 Jun 2009
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About the Author
Hans Urs von Balthasar (1905-88), a Swiss theologian and priest, is considered by many the most important Catholic theologian of the twentieth century. Incredibly prolific and diverse, he wrote over one hundred books and many hundreds of articles. A favorite theologian and spiritual writer of Pope Francis, as well as the two previous Popes, he was called the most cultured man of our time by Henri de Lubac, and Karl Rahner described his achievements as really breathtaking. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Unsatisfied with Rahner's "transcendental Thomism" and his method of "doing theology from below", von Balthasar begins with the revelation of God. The entire systematic theology is structured around the ancient philosophical transcendentals "Beauty, Truth, and Goodness". In this first volume (and throughout the first part of the trilogy) von Balthasar discusses the Revelation of God to humanity through form and beauty.
Truly a remarkable book, and a good introduction to a remarkable man.
At the fantastic Introduction, after a superb hymn to the Beauty, he presents us with an accurate analysis of the elimination of this universal (Beauty) from both Catholic and Protestant theology, besides a review on the possibilities of a Protestant Aesthetics. He tries, then, to make it clear the difference between an Aesthetic Theology from a Theological Aesthetics. The task and structure of the latter is then explored.
There's no way to go on in such detailness through the whole book, because there are too many points to look at, and this is not the place to do it. But it's worth to say that the main objective of the author, as he goes on working on the 'subjective evidence' through the 'light' and 'experience' of faith (the second part of the book), and at the third part, the 'objective evidence', the main objective, as I was saying, is to precise a 'form', to state the main difference of Christianity from all other world religions, which is exactly the visible and historical form of the God made flesh. After 'seeing' the form of revelation which came from the Old Covenant, we have in Christ the centre of its form, that is, the centre of God's revelation form.
I strongly recommend this book to everyone who is seriously wanting to deep his theological studies, or to anyone who wants to learn more about the actual situation of the Church, and Christianity as a whole.