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After God

Richard Kearney and the Religious Turn in Continental Philosophy

John Manoussakis

Publication Year: 2006

Who or what comes after God? In the wake of God, as the last fifty years of philosophy has shown, God comes back again, otherwise: Heidegger's last God, Levinas's God of Infinity, Derrida's and Caputo's tout autre, Marion's God without Being, Kearney's God who may be. Sharing the common problematic of the otherness of the Other, the essays in this volume represent considered responses to the recent work of Richard Kearney.John Panteleimon Manoussakis holds a Ph.D. in philosophy from Boston College. He is the author of Theos Philosophoumenos (in Greek, Athens 2004) and co-editor of Heidegger and the Greeks (with Drew Hyland). He has also translated Heidegger's Aufenthalte.

Published by: Fordham University Press

Title Page

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Contents

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pp. vii-ix

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xi-

Several of the contributions published in this volume have previously appeared in the following journals: Continental Philosophy Review, Faith and Philosophy, Metaphilosophy, Modern Theology, Philosophy and Social Criticism, Philosophy Today, Research in Phenomenology, Revista Portuguesa de Filosofia, ...

Abbreviations

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pp. xiii-

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Introduction

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pp. xv-xx

All the texts in this volume share, in one way or another, the adverbial ambiguity of after. The God they seek—the God they are after—is a God who can be seen ‘‘only from behind,’’ that is, without being seen, in the blindness of vision, at the limits of the phenomenological horizon. ...

Part I: The Return to the Eschaton

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pp. 1-

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Epiphanies of the Everyday: Toward a Micro-Eschatology

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pp. 3-20

What if we were to return to epiphanies of the everyday? What if we could come back to the end (eschaton) in the here and now? Back to that end after the end of time that addresses us in each instant? What if we could rediscover ourselves again face-to-face with the infinite in the infinitesimal? ...

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Toward a Fourth Reduction?

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pp. 21-34

In this essay we attempt a redefining of the phenomenological method as this has been developed mainly through three "reductions"1 represented by three thinkers whose work advanced phenomenological research in novel ways: Edmund Husserl, Martin Heidegger, and Jean-Luc Marion. ...

Part II: The Possible: Between Being and God

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pp. 35-

I. Philosophy Facing Theology

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pp. 37-

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Enabling God

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pp. 39-54

The title of this essay—‘‘Enabling God’’—can be read both ways. God enabling us, us enabling God. As such, it affirms the freedom that characterizes our relationship to the divine as a mutual act of giving. So doing, it challenges traditional concepts of God as omnipotence. The notion of an all-powerful, ...

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Maybe, Maybe Not: Richard Kearney and God

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pp. 55-77

Richard Kearney displays an enviable range of concerns in the embarrassment of riches that he offers to us with his three most recent books.1 Each book asks for careful attention in its own right, though each contributes in a distinctive register to a larger project which goes under the title Philosophy at the Limit. ...

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Hermeneutics and the God of Promise

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pp. 78-93

In The God Who May Be, Richard Kearney has given us a gift whose power to provoke thought is out of proportion to its small size. Its opening sentences read as follows: "God neither is nor is not but may be. That is my thesis in this volume. What I mean by this is that God, who is traditionally thought of as act or actuality, ...

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Kearney’s Wager

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pp. 94-103

In a 1991 essay, Dominique Janicaud lamented a "turn" in recent French phenomenology "toward the theological," toward the question of the nature of postmetaphysical divinity. In 1984, Richard Kearney had published Poétique du Possible: Phénoménologie Herméneutique de la Figuration, in which he had already ...

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Is the Possible Doing Justice to God?

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pp. 104-110

I would have preferred not to speak of God. I don’t deny the possibility of speaking to God; the great Judeo-Christian tradition has done it and still does. But speaking of God is particularly risky in philosophy, by using ideas, concepts, and categories that might turn out to be irrelevant to God (or not worthy of Him). ...

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The God Who May Be and the God Who Was

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pp. 111-126

In the context of the reductive paradigm inspired by Husserl’s phenomenological method, Richard Kearney proposes a return (reducere) to the face-to-face encounter with existence through, after, and indeed even in the preceding reductive stages that have highlighted a return to essence (Husserl), being (Heidegger), ...

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Christianity and Possibility

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pp. 127-138

We do not yet know what it means to speak of the death of God, and not only because those who speak of it do not always have the same thing in mind. The simplest controversy is also the weightiest, and still the most painful: Is it only a persistent idol that dies, or must it be religion itself, as the practice of idolatry? ...

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Quis ergo Amo cum Deum Meum Amo?

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pp. 139-154

Continental philosophy, since the work of Emmanuel Levinas, has been marked by a particular concern with otherness. Although this concern is expressed in a variety of ways—the Infinite, the Other, the impossible, and so on—each of these expressions orients itself around the absolute incommensurability ...

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Divinity and Alterity

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pp. 155-166

Divinity and alterity have haunted phenomenology since its beginnings. At phenomenology’s margins Rudolf Otto described God as the "wholly other."1 This otherness of God and the divinity of otherness came into sharp relief in Husserl’s transcendental phenomenology, where God’s transcendence is bracketed ...

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On the God of the Possible

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pp. 167-184

Under a title that captures our attention and puts a question that will not go away, Richard Kearney offers a conception of the divine and of divinity that immediately strikes the reader by its extraordinary youthfulness. For youth, not only in its most current sense, but in its most philosophical as well, ...

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Questions to and from a Tradition in Disarray

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pp. 185-207

"Of all points of faith, the being of a God is, to my own apprehension, encompassed with most difficulty, and borne in upon our minds with most power" (Newman, Apologia, chap. 5). The biblical idea of God as Judge and Redeemer is borne in on our minds by moral experience, our sense of sin and desire of forgiveness, ...

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Mystic Maybes

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pp. 208-221

Matthew Arnold "objected to our carrying on a flirtation with mystic maybe’s and calling it Religion."1 Why should Augustine Birrill’s words, occasioned by the death of Arnold, come to mind when I read Richard Kearney’s The God Who May Be? Perhaps because Arnold and Kearney share a common purpose: ...

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The Maker Mind and Its Shade

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pp. 222-230

Richard Kearney and I have a common interest in Heidegger’s existential and ontological understanding of the "possible," which moves far beyond the classical and modern logic of modalities and Nicolai Hartmann’s modal ontology. Heidegger’s statement that "the possible is more real than the real" ...

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Divine Metaxology

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pp. 231-240

Richard Kearney is a possibility thinker, a philosopher, novelist, and poet fired by a passion for/of God. For Kearney, philosophy links imagination and affectivity with reason in a rhetoric of persuasion aiming for individual and societal transfiguration. In other words, as I read him, philosophy is not an ...

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Theopoetics of the Possible

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pp. 241-269

Theology is a cartography (that is, an attempt to create maps, to mark out, to graph, or to plot a course or courses) that will lead to a place, a topos, where divine revelation may occur and knowledge of God may be discovered. At these various places (topoi) and through its various topics, theology concerns the "way," ...

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Is God Diminished If We Abscond?

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pp. 270-278

Throughout his trilogy Philosophy at the Limit, Richard Kearney leads us "on the sinuous paths through postmodernity and beyond." Calling on the messenger god, Hermes, he pioneers a new way of interpreting three of the defining contours of our third-millennial profile: strangers, gods, and monsters, ...

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Prosopon and Icon: Two Premodern Ways of Thinking God

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pp. 279-298

As such, the Aristotelian God enthrones Himself in the summit of ontotheological assertions. Bound to the absolute necessity, that of ontology, He not only cannot be but His own being, but also He cannot cease to be. His very essence condemns Him to an unavoidable yet tautological existence. Enclosed in the monism of his ipseity, ...

Part III: Recapitulations

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pp. 299-

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Desire of God: An Exchange

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pp. 301-308

KEARNEY: Derrida’s own response to the postmodern dilemma of undecidability would seem to be twofold—believe and ! In spite of our inability to know for sure ‘‘who speaks’’ behind the many voices and visages that float before us—now present, now absent; now here, now elsewhere—Derrida tells us ...

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Richard Kearney’s Enthusiasm

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pp. 309-317

Richard Kearney is a genuine "enthusiast," in the genuine sense of the word. His writings are contagiously enthusiastic, charged and exciting, moving and inciting, full of prayers and tears. His beautiful and powerful prose is a perfect testimony to what his friend Seamus Heaney meant when Heaney said that the Irish ...

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Hermeneutics of Revelation

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pp. 318-339

KEARNEY: There are many similarities between your work, Jean-Luc, and mine: we both owe a great deal of our philosophical formation to the phenomenologies of Husserl and Heidegger; we have both engaged ourselves in close dialogue with Levinas, Ricoeur, and Derrida. Given these evident similarities, ...

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God: The Possible/Impossible

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pp. 340-354

TRACY: He’s a remarkable philosopher. He reminds me of Blanchot and Sartre in that he has written on narrative and metaphor (and hermeneutics), and he has also written some very fine novels. He is also a remarkable interviewer. He asks questions in order to really understand what someone is thinking, ...

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Kearney’s Endless Morning

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pp. 355-361

In at least two registers—one of genre and one of doctrine—Richard Kearney’s philosophical theology appears suddenly and luminously at the forefront of theology itself. In other words, it invokes a "possible God," and thus a possible theology. Theology has wanted the fully actual, active God, however, not a possible one ...

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Reflecting God

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pp. 362-364

Kearney’s hermeneutics of religion might be called a "covenantal process view without the metaphysics" or, perhaps more accurately, with only intimations of metaphysics. The ontological claim is there— God is coming, will come, can come—but only if we help God come, only if we do our part by witnessing to love ...

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In Place of a Response

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pp. 365-388

MANOLOPOULOS: In your debate with Derrida and Marion, ‘‘On the Gift’’ (Villanova, 1997), you ask the question "Is there a Christian philosophy of the gift?"1 Do you think either Derrida or Marion provides handy directions? Could you summarize or interpret their insights? And whose argument do you personally find ...

Notes

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pp. 389-430

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About the Contributors

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pp. 431-436

Jeffrey Bloechl, Associate Professor of Philosophy and Edward Bennett Williams Fellow at the College of the Holy Cross, has published widely in contemporary Continental philosophy and philosophy of religion. His major works include, as author, Liturgy of the Neighbor: Emmanuel Levinas and the Religion of Responsibility ...

Index

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pp. 437-439

Other Books in Fordham's Perspectives in Continental Philosophy Series

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E-ISBN-13: 9780823247394
Print-ISBN-13: 9780823225316
Print-ISBN-10: 0823225313

Page Count: 464
Publication Year: 2006

Research Areas

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Subject Headings

  • Kearney, Richard. Strangers, gods, and monsters.
  • Kearney, Richard.
  • Kearney, Richard. God who may be.
  • Continental philosophy.
  • God (Christianity).
  • Philosophical theology.
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