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The Reason of Following

Christology and the Ecstatic I

In the Reason of Following noted scholar Robert P. Scharlemann takes Christology in a radically new direction, suggesting that Christology itself represents a form of reason and an understanding of selfhood. For the first time, Scharlemann establishes a logical place for Christology in philosophical theology.

Scharlemann presents a christological phenomenology of the self, tracing the connections between the "I am" of the God who spoke to Moses, the "I am" of Christ, and the "I am" of autonomous self-identification. How, he asks, can the self that spontaneously responds to Jesus’ "Follow me!" be compared with the everyday, autonomous self? What is the nature of "following" on the part of those who answer the summons of one whose name is "I am"? Pursuing these questions, Scharlemann develops a christological phenomenology of the self—an account in which following means not the expression of the self in action or reflection but rather self-discovery in another person.

With a deep sense of both culture and philosophy, Scharlemann distinguishes the forms of reason involved in "following" from those in ethics, aesthetics, and other modes of religious philosophic thought. His penetrating readings of nineteenth- and twentieth-century German theological and philosophical traditions provide an introduction to lesser-known thinkers such as Hermann and Picht as well as a profound critique of major figures such as Descartes, Heidegger, Fichte, and Kant.

Finally Scharlemann outlines a program for a more systematic and rounded presentation of what Christian doctrine might mean in the contemporary world. His work will be of interest to students of theology and philosophy alike.

221 pages | 5-1/2 x 8-1/2 | © 1991

Religion and Postmodernism

Philosophy: Philosophy of Religion

Religion: Philosophy of Religion, Theology, and Ethics

Table of Contents

1. The Subjectivity of the Self: The I as Such
2. The Being of the Self
3. Modes of Thinking
4. The Exstantial I
5. Forms of Reason: Theoretical, Practical, Aesthetic, Acoluthetic
6. Explication of Acoluthetic Reason
7. Textuality: The Inscription of the Self
8. Christology and Theology

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