Saturday, September 05, 2009

Balthasar's Christocentric Anthropology

"when people speak of Balthasar as a Christocentric theologian, it must be clear that this does not mean that somehow Balthasar neglects the proper autonomy of the natural or philosophical order of things. Rather, as Balthasar insists repeatedly, it is actually on account of Christology that the Christian must be the first to preserve the legitimate authority of the created or natural order, for it is precisely in the person of Christ that the divine and human come together 'without confusion, without separation, without admixture.'
[...]
It therefore follows that all that has been said to this point about the analogy of Being — the relationship between God and the world — finds in highest and most concrete expression in the person of Jesus Christ. This is why Balthasar can refer to Jesus Christ as the analogy of Being in person."
Balthasar: A Guide for the Perplexed, 64 (Howsare)

As one who has read Balthasar since 1988, I highly recommend Rodney Howsare's clearly written, substantive exploration of the heart of Balthasar's thought. This book will be especially helpful to academics because it positions Balthasar relative to other figures like Karl Barth and Karl Rahner. Balthasar's relationship to Thomas Aquinas, Maurice Blondel, and Scholastic Thomism are also addressed as is his current role in Catholic and Protestant theology.
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