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Title: Authentic humanity in the theology of Paul Tillich and Karl Barth
Author: Wan, Milton Wai-yiu
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 1984
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This thesis maintains that, in spite of many differences and oppositions between the theologies of Paul Tillich and Karl Barth, so far as the problem of authentic humanity is concerned, the two theologians complement rather than exclude each other. Furthermore, the thesis shows that their understandings of humanity, though deeply rooted in the Christian tradition, can provide a genuine dialogue with non-Christian approaches to the realization of authentic humanity. The first chapter is a comparative survey of the two theologians' encounters with human inauthenticity during the First World War. After this 'Introductory' part, the following two chapters are concerned with divine intervention as the foundation and beginning of authentic humanity. This consists of a study of Barth's interpretation of the doctrine of reconciliation and of Tillich's interpretation of the doctrine of justification. The study demonstrates that Earth's Christological objectivity and Tillich's existential concern complement each other, so that together they build up a more comprehensive understanding of God's salvific act in Christ and its transforming power in human experience than does either in its own. The next two chapters are concerned with the realization of authentic humanity. Tillich's idea of unambiguous life is studied from an interdisciplinary perspective and compared with Martin Heidegger's philosophy, Abraham H. Maslow's humanistic psychology, Karl Marx's politics and Zen Buddhism. Then Barth's doctrine of the Christian life as the realization of man's ontological determination is studied under the categories of the God-man and man-man relationships. Again we find that Tillich's interdisciplinary concern and Barth's delineation of the Christian life in the presence of a living God and guided by a personal Spirit also complement each other, so that together they constitute a comprehensive picture of authentic humanity, which may be called a 'Christian personalist' view of anthropology.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Humanity