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Paul H. Carr, Ph. D.
Former Adjunct Philosophy Professor, U Mass. Lowell
Paul Tillich
One of the great theologians of the 20th century.
22
OUTLINE
1. His Life History
2. New Being (Creation) & Spiritual Presence
3. His 2 Popular and 3 Sermon Books
4. Systematic Theology: Answering Existential
Questions
5. Relating Religion to Culture:
Science, Art, Psychology
33
Paul Tillich
“Religion is the encounter with the Holy,
which expresses our ultimate concern.
It can only be expressed by symbols and symbolic actions and
cannot be reduced to ordinary words.
If taken literally, symbols become absurd.”
44
PAUL TILLICH (1886-1965)
Apologetic, Existential, Theologian
Paul Tillich was born in Prussia in 1886,
ordained a minister in the Lutheran Church in
1912, and served as a chaplain in the German
Army during WWI.
He then taught philosophy and theology at
the universities of Marburg, Dresden, Leipzig,
and Frankfurt. As leader of the Religious
Socialist movement, his activities brought him
into conflict with the Nazis, who dismissed
him from his professorship in 1933, shortly
after Hitler assumed power. Reinhold Niebuhr
invited him to teach at Union Theological
Seminary in New York.
In 1955, Tillich became a University
Professor at Harvard, and
in 1962, the John Nuveen Professor of
Theology at the Divinity School of the
University of Chicago.
55
ON THE BOUNDARY
An Autobiographical Sketch
Paul Tillich
“The boundary is the best place for acquiring knowledge.”
• Between Country and City
• Between Social Classes
• Between Heteronomy(Authority) and Autonomy (Freedom)
• Between Theology and Philosophy
• Between War (Chaplain WWI) and Peace
• Between Native (Germany) and Alien Land (US).
66
• PROTESTANT PRINCIPLE as
prophetic and critical judgment against
idolatry (absolutizing the relative.)
“The infinite distance between the divine and
the human undercuts the absolute claim of
any doctrinal expression of the New Being.”
• CATHOLIC SUBSTANCE tradition,
and liturgy as concrete embodiment.
GUSTAVE WEIGEL, S.J.:
“The sustained brilliance of Tillich is amazing
and his incredibly wide knowledge matches
his brilliance”
March 16, 1959
77
TIME
Cover Article
March 16, 1959
”From the
Old World to
the New
Being."
The New Being or
New Creation is
the essence of the
Christian religion
manifest in Jesus,
who was the
Christ, the bearer
and mediator of the
new state of things,
characterized by
re-union,
re-conciliaton, and
re-surrection.
88
"Tillich has succeeded in erecting a towering structure of thought…an edifice densely
packed and neatly shaped against the erosion of intellectual wind and wave."
Cover Article TIME, March 16, 1959
99
PAUL JOHANNES
TILLICH
1886-1965
“And he shall be like a
tree planted by the rivers
of water that bringeth
forth his fruit in his
season. His leaf also shall
not wither and whatsoever
he doeth shall prosper.”
Psalm 1:3
Tillich Memorial Park, New Harmony, IN
1010
TILLICH MEMORIAL
PARK
New Harmony, IN
“This park was created for
Paul Johannes Tillich,
dedicated by him on Pentecost
1963, & commemorated to
him on Pentecost 1966…..”
Granddaughter, Tillich, “Mutie” Tillich Ferris, Ph..D.
1111
Paul Tillich Memorial Park
Tillich Quotes
Under the conditions of existence (Sin &
The Fall), we are estranged or separated
from our essential selves (what we ought to
and could be.) We our re-united with our
true selves by the power of the New Being
in Jesus the Christ (Salvation).
“Today we know what the New Testament
always knew: that miracles are signs
pointing to the presence of a divine power
in history and that they are in no way
negations of natural law.”
1212
TILLICH MADE THEOLOGY RELEVANT BY:
1. Reinterpreting words like FAITH AND COURAGE to remove
confusion and distortion with his popular books
“THE COURAGE TO BE” (1952) &
“DYNAMICS OF FAITH” (1957).
2. His ANSWERING THEOLOGY, which correlated
questions arising from our human predicament and finitude
with answers derived from divine revelation and eternal wisdom.
3TILLICH’S THEOLOGY EMPHASIZED DIALOGUE BETWEEN
“Yes” & “NO,” life & death, being & non-being, essence & existence
freedom & destiny,
individualization & participation,
the vertical & the horizontal
TO AVOID DISTORTED EXTREMES.
1313
Psychologist Rollo May, student and friend of Tillich, noted that the title of his book was suggested
by The Courage to Be. “We express our being by creating.”
1414
THE COURAGE TO BE
Courage is self-affirmation “in-spite-of,” that is in spite of
that which tends to prevent the self from affirming itself. “
Three types of nonbeing threatening self affirmation:
1. Fate and death
(ontic)
2. Emptiness and meaninglessness
(loss of ultimate concern)
3. Guilt and condemnation
(moral affirmation)
1515
The SOURCE of the COURAGE TO BE is the
“GOD ABOVE THE GOD OF THEISM.”
Examples of the God who must be transcended :
• The rhetorical-political abuse of the name of God:
S. Hussein: “We will win because God is on our side.”
vs. Abraham Lincoln:
“The question is not whether God is on our side but,
Are we on God’s side?”
• The God of theism who is
a being beside other beings, (hence finite and provable),
an invincible tyrant who controls and determines everything &
allows us no freedom.
1616
Conclusion of THE COURAGE TO BE
“Theism in all its forms is transcended in the
experience we have called absolute faith.
It is accepting of the acceptance without
something or somebody that accepts.
It is the power of being-itself (God) that
accepts and gives the COURAGE TO BE.”
1717
1818
DYNAMICS OF FAITH
“Faith is the state of being grasped by ultimate concern.”
“Ultimate Concern promises ultimate fulfillment and demands the ultimate
surrender of him who accepts this claim.”
This definition also applies to secular religions like communism and
capitalist materialism.
“For Tillich Ultimate Concern should be:
(1) The abstract translation of the great commandment (Deut. 6:5) ‘You shall love
the Lord your God with all your heard, soul, and might.’ ”
(2) Deals with ‘to be or not to be.’”
Ultimate Concern is in contrast to the Preliminary Concerns of our daily lives,
yet
“In an through every Preliminary Concern, the ultimate can actualize itself.”
1919
CORRELATIING QUESTIONS with ANSWERS
2020
TILLICH’S SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY BOOKS
VOLUME ONE “The Shaking of the
I.. Reason and the Quest for Revelation Foundations” (Sermon:
II. Being and God You Are Accepted)
q. Why is their Being (something) rather than Non-Being (nothing)? Dynamics of Faith
a. The Answer: “God”as Being, Living, Creating, Relating. Courage to Be
VOLUME TWO
III. Existence and the Christ
q. Who overcomes the separation of what we are from what we could to be?
a. Answer: Jesus, the Christ, the bearer of the New Being. “The New Being”
VOLUME THREE (Sermons)
IV. Life and the Spirit
q. What power overcomes the Ambiguities of Life?
(the impossibility of separating the positive from the negative)
a. The Answer: The Power of Spiritual Presence. “The Eternal Now”
V. History and the Kingdom of God Sermon “Spiritual
The Kingdom of God within History and as the End of History Presence”
2121
2222
IV. LIFE AND THE SPIRIT
Paul Tillich’s Systematic Theology, Vol. III
The problem of life is ambiguity. Every
process of life has its contrast within itself
( positive and negative), thus driving us to the
quest for unambiguous life or life under the
impact of Spiritual Presence. The Spiritual
Presence conquers the negatives of religion,
culture, and morality, and the symbols
anticipating Eternal Life present answers to the
problem of life.
2323
2424
TILLICH’S SPIRITUAL PRESENCE SERMON
I took my new wife Karin to the Harvard Memorial Church on12 February 1961.
• “We can compare the Spiritual Presence with the air we breath, surrounding us,
nearest to us, and working life within us. In most languages, the word “spirit”
means breath or wind.” The Spirit is always present, a moving power, sometimes
in stormy ecstasies of individuals and groups, but mostly entering our human
spirit and keeping it alive.”
• “We can feel called to help others in just the moment when we ourselves need
help most urgently-and astonishingly, we can help.”
• “A POWER WORKS THOUGH US WHICH IS NOT OF US.”
2525
TILLICH’S SPIRITUAL PRESENCE SERMON (2)
Published in “The Eternal Now.”
• MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SPIRITAL PRESENCE:
- “The Spirit can give you the strength to throw off false anxieties and
take upon yourself the anxiety which belongs to life itself.”
- “THE SPIRIT ENABLES US TO REACH OUR TRUEST AND
GREATEST POTENTIAL IN SPITE OF OUR FATE AND THE
AMBIGUITIES OF LIFE.”
Carr Family in 1985,
the year before Karin died of leukemia.
Paul’s late wife, Karin
1940, Berlin - 1986,Boston
2727
TILLICH’S SPIRITUAL PRESENCE
When Karin died of leukemia, 26 years
later, leaving me with daughters ages 12,
14, 16, 21, and 24, I turned to these words,
as I struggled to find “the courage to be.”
“THE SPIRIT ENABLES US TO
REACH OUR TRUEST AND GREATEST
POTENTIAL IN SPITE OF OUR FATE
AND THE AMBIGUITIES OF LIFE.”
2828
“Culture is the form of religion.
Religion is the substance of Culture”
The comprehensiveness and creativity of Tillich’s Harvard Course,
“Theology of Culture,” spoke to me.
He related religion to:
•Art
• Science
• Philosophy
•Psychology
2929
“The Greatest Protestant Painting of our Time (1937)”
“Picasso’s Guernica is profoundly religious because it expresses
so honestly and powerfully man’s anguished search for ultimate
meaning and his passionate revolt against cruelty and hatred.”
3030
The Last Supper by Salvador Dali,
National Gallery of Art, Washington, D. C.
Tillich was critical of this painting.
(See Paul Tillich First-Hand , Grace Cali, Exploration Press, 1995, pg. 26 )
3131
Papers presented at the International Paul Tillich Society Meeting
New Harmony, IN, June 1999 (Mercier Univ. Press 2001)
3232
SCIENCE AND RELIGION:
ORIGINAL UNITY AND COURAGE TO CREATE
Paul H. Carr
International Paul Tillich Society Conference
“The Religious Situation at the Dawn of the New Millennium”
New Harmony Indiana, 19 June 1999
Three sections:
1. Original Unity and “Demythologization’
2. Galileo’s “Courage to Create”
3. Reconciliation and Reuniting of Science and Religion
3333
THE LOST DIMENSION IN RELIGION
Saturday Evening Post, 1958
VERTICAL DIMENSION: Religion as depth, transcendence, and
source of meaning, and purpose. The transcendent is lost when
taken non-symbolically or literally.
HORIZONTAL DIMENSION: Physical relationship between finite
objects, as in science and technology.
R
S C I E N C E Inter-penetrating Dimensions.
I
G
I
O
N
BEAUTY in Science & SpiritBEAUTY in Science & Spirit
• Appendix DAppendix D
Summary ofSummary of
Science andScience and
ReligionReligion
Session at theSession at the
InternationalInternational
Paul TillichPaul Tillich
SocietySociety
Meeting, 1999Meeting, 1999
3535“Love is stronger than death. It creates something new out of the destruction..” TIME 29 Oct 65
3636
TILLICH MADE THEOLOGY RELEVANT BY:
1. Reinterpreting words like FAITH AND COURAGE to remove
confusion and distortion with his popular books
“THE COURAGE TO BE” &
“DYNAMICS OF FAITH”
2. His ANSWERING THEOLOGY, which correlated
questions arising from our human finitude and predicament
with answers derived from divine revelation and religious wisdom.
3. RELATING RELIGION TO CULTURE: Science & Art.
TILLICH’S THEOLOGY EMPHASIZED DIALOGUE BETWEEN
“YES”& “NO,” life & death, being & non-being, essence & existence
freedom & destiny, TO AVOID DISTORTED EXTREMES.
“The boundary is the best place for acquiring knowledge.”
TO LEARN MORETO LEARN MORE
• Chapter 6:Chapter 6:
• ““A Theology forA Theology for
Evolution: Haught,Evolution: Haught,
Teilhard de Chardin, &Teilhard de Chardin, &
Tillich.”Tillich.”
• NA Paul Tillich SocietyNA Paul Tillich Society
www.NAPTS.orgwww.NAPTS.org
-Paul H. Carr's web page-Paul H. Carr's web page
www.MirrorOfNature.orgwww.MirrorOfNature.org

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Is Religion Irrelevant? Paul Tillich's Answering Theology

  • 1. 11 Paul H. Carr, Ph. D. Former Adjunct Philosophy Professor, U Mass. Lowell Paul Tillich One of the great theologians of the 20th century.
  • 2. 22 OUTLINE 1. His Life History 2. New Being (Creation) & Spiritual Presence 3. His 2 Popular and 3 Sermon Books 4. Systematic Theology: Answering Existential Questions 5. Relating Religion to Culture: Science, Art, Psychology
  • 3. 33 Paul Tillich “Religion is the encounter with the Holy, which expresses our ultimate concern. It can only be expressed by symbols and symbolic actions and cannot be reduced to ordinary words. If taken literally, symbols become absurd.”
  • 4. 44 PAUL TILLICH (1886-1965) Apologetic, Existential, Theologian Paul Tillich was born in Prussia in 1886, ordained a minister in the Lutheran Church in 1912, and served as a chaplain in the German Army during WWI. He then taught philosophy and theology at the universities of Marburg, Dresden, Leipzig, and Frankfurt. As leader of the Religious Socialist movement, his activities brought him into conflict with the Nazis, who dismissed him from his professorship in 1933, shortly after Hitler assumed power. Reinhold Niebuhr invited him to teach at Union Theological Seminary in New York. In 1955, Tillich became a University Professor at Harvard, and in 1962, the John Nuveen Professor of Theology at the Divinity School of the University of Chicago.
  • 5. 55 ON THE BOUNDARY An Autobiographical Sketch Paul Tillich “The boundary is the best place for acquiring knowledge.” • Between Country and City • Between Social Classes • Between Heteronomy(Authority) and Autonomy (Freedom) • Between Theology and Philosophy • Between War (Chaplain WWI) and Peace • Between Native (Germany) and Alien Land (US).
  • 6. 66 • PROTESTANT PRINCIPLE as prophetic and critical judgment against idolatry (absolutizing the relative.) “The infinite distance between the divine and the human undercuts the absolute claim of any doctrinal expression of the New Being.” • CATHOLIC SUBSTANCE tradition, and liturgy as concrete embodiment. GUSTAVE WEIGEL, S.J.: “The sustained brilliance of Tillich is amazing and his incredibly wide knowledge matches his brilliance” March 16, 1959
  • 7. 77 TIME Cover Article March 16, 1959 ”From the Old World to the New Being." The New Being or New Creation is the essence of the Christian religion manifest in Jesus, who was the Christ, the bearer and mediator of the new state of things, characterized by re-union, re-conciliaton, and re-surrection.
  • 8. 88 "Tillich has succeeded in erecting a towering structure of thought…an edifice densely packed and neatly shaped against the erosion of intellectual wind and wave." Cover Article TIME, March 16, 1959
  • 9. 99 PAUL JOHANNES TILLICH 1886-1965 “And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water that bringeth forth his fruit in his season. His leaf also shall not wither and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.” Psalm 1:3 Tillich Memorial Park, New Harmony, IN
  • 10. 1010 TILLICH MEMORIAL PARK New Harmony, IN “This park was created for Paul Johannes Tillich, dedicated by him on Pentecost 1963, & commemorated to him on Pentecost 1966…..” Granddaughter, Tillich, “Mutie” Tillich Ferris, Ph..D.
  • 11. 1111 Paul Tillich Memorial Park Tillich Quotes Under the conditions of existence (Sin & The Fall), we are estranged or separated from our essential selves (what we ought to and could be.) We our re-united with our true selves by the power of the New Being in Jesus the Christ (Salvation). “Today we know what the New Testament always knew: that miracles are signs pointing to the presence of a divine power in history and that they are in no way negations of natural law.”
  • 12. 1212 TILLICH MADE THEOLOGY RELEVANT BY: 1. Reinterpreting words like FAITH AND COURAGE to remove confusion and distortion with his popular books “THE COURAGE TO BE” (1952) & “DYNAMICS OF FAITH” (1957). 2. His ANSWERING THEOLOGY, which correlated questions arising from our human predicament and finitude with answers derived from divine revelation and eternal wisdom. 3TILLICH’S THEOLOGY EMPHASIZED DIALOGUE BETWEEN “Yes” & “NO,” life & death, being & non-being, essence & existence freedom & destiny, individualization & participation, the vertical & the horizontal TO AVOID DISTORTED EXTREMES.
  • 13. 1313 Psychologist Rollo May, student and friend of Tillich, noted that the title of his book was suggested by The Courage to Be. “We express our being by creating.”
  • 14. 1414 THE COURAGE TO BE Courage is self-affirmation “in-spite-of,” that is in spite of that which tends to prevent the self from affirming itself. “ Three types of nonbeing threatening self affirmation: 1. Fate and death (ontic) 2. Emptiness and meaninglessness (loss of ultimate concern) 3. Guilt and condemnation (moral affirmation)
  • 15. 1515 The SOURCE of the COURAGE TO BE is the “GOD ABOVE THE GOD OF THEISM.” Examples of the God who must be transcended : • The rhetorical-political abuse of the name of God: S. Hussein: “We will win because God is on our side.” vs. Abraham Lincoln: “The question is not whether God is on our side but, Are we on God’s side?” • The God of theism who is a being beside other beings, (hence finite and provable), an invincible tyrant who controls and determines everything & allows us no freedom.
  • 16. 1616 Conclusion of THE COURAGE TO BE “Theism in all its forms is transcended in the experience we have called absolute faith. It is accepting of the acceptance without something or somebody that accepts. It is the power of being-itself (God) that accepts and gives the COURAGE TO BE.”
  • 17. 1717
  • 18. 1818 DYNAMICS OF FAITH “Faith is the state of being grasped by ultimate concern.” “Ultimate Concern promises ultimate fulfillment and demands the ultimate surrender of him who accepts this claim.” This definition also applies to secular religions like communism and capitalist materialism. “For Tillich Ultimate Concern should be: (1) The abstract translation of the great commandment (Deut. 6:5) ‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heard, soul, and might.’ ” (2) Deals with ‘to be or not to be.’” Ultimate Concern is in contrast to the Preliminary Concerns of our daily lives, yet “In an through every Preliminary Concern, the ultimate can actualize itself.”
  • 20. 2020 TILLICH’S SYSTEMATIC THEOLOGY BOOKS VOLUME ONE “The Shaking of the I.. Reason and the Quest for Revelation Foundations” (Sermon: II. Being and God You Are Accepted) q. Why is their Being (something) rather than Non-Being (nothing)? Dynamics of Faith a. The Answer: “God”as Being, Living, Creating, Relating. Courage to Be VOLUME TWO III. Existence and the Christ q. Who overcomes the separation of what we are from what we could to be? a. Answer: Jesus, the Christ, the bearer of the New Being. “The New Being” VOLUME THREE (Sermons) IV. Life and the Spirit q. What power overcomes the Ambiguities of Life? (the impossibility of separating the positive from the negative) a. The Answer: The Power of Spiritual Presence. “The Eternal Now” V. History and the Kingdom of God Sermon “Spiritual The Kingdom of God within History and as the End of History Presence”
  • 21. 2121
  • 22. 2222 IV. LIFE AND THE SPIRIT Paul Tillich’s Systematic Theology, Vol. III The problem of life is ambiguity. Every process of life has its contrast within itself ( positive and negative), thus driving us to the quest for unambiguous life or life under the impact of Spiritual Presence. The Spiritual Presence conquers the negatives of religion, culture, and morality, and the symbols anticipating Eternal Life present answers to the problem of life.
  • 23. 2323
  • 24. 2424 TILLICH’S SPIRITUAL PRESENCE SERMON I took my new wife Karin to the Harvard Memorial Church on12 February 1961. • “We can compare the Spiritual Presence with the air we breath, surrounding us, nearest to us, and working life within us. In most languages, the word “spirit” means breath or wind.” The Spirit is always present, a moving power, sometimes in stormy ecstasies of individuals and groups, but mostly entering our human spirit and keeping it alive.” • “We can feel called to help others in just the moment when we ourselves need help most urgently-and astonishingly, we can help.” • “A POWER WORKS THOUGH US WHICH IS NOT OF US.”
  • 25. 2525 TILLICH’S SPIRITUAL PRESENCE SERMON (2) Published in “The Eternal Now.” • MANIFESTATIONS OF THE SPIRITAL PRESENCE: - “The Spirit can give you the strength to throw off false anxieties and take upon yourself the anxiety which belongs to life itself.” - “THE SPIRIT ENABLES US TO REACH OUR TRUEST AND GREATEST POTENTIAL IN SPITE OF OUR FATE AND THE AMBIGUITIES OF LIFE.”
  • 26. Carr Family in 1985, the year before Karin died of leukemia. Paul’s late wife, Karin 1940, Berlin - 1986,Boston
  • 27. 2727 TILLICH’S SPIRITUAL PRESENCE When Karin died of leukemia, 26 years later, leaving me with daughters ages 12, 14, 16, 21, and 24, I turned to these words, as I struggled to find “the courage to be.” “THE SPIRIT ENABLES US TO REACH OUR TRUEST AND GREATEST POTENTIAL IN SPITE OF OUR FATE AND THE AMBIGUITIES OF LIFE.”
  • 28. 2828 “Culture is the form of religion. Religion is the substance of Culture” The comprehensiveness and creativity of Tillich’s Harvard Course, “Theology of Culture,” spoke to me. He related religion to: •Art • Science • Philosophy •Psychology
  • 29. 2929 “The Greatest Protestant Painting of our Time (1937)” “Picasso’s Guernica is profoundly religious because it expresses so honestly and powerfully man’s anguished search for ultimate meaning and his passionate revolt against cruelty and hatred.”
  • 30. 3030 The Last Supper by Salvador Dali, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D. C. Tillich was critical of this painting. (See Paul Tillich First-Hand , Grace Cali, Exploration Press, 1995, pg. 26 )
  • 31. 3131 Papers presented at the International Paul Tillich Society Meeting New Harmony, IN, June 1999 (Mercier Univ. Press 2001)
  • 32. 3232 SCIENCE AND RELIGION: ORIGINAL UNITY AND COURAGE TO CREATE Paul H. Carr International Paul Tillich Society Conference “The Religious Situation at the Dawn of the New Millennium” New Harmony Indiana, 19 June 1999 Three sections: 1. Original Unity and “Demythologization’ 2. Galileo’s “Courage to Create” 3. Reconciliation and Reuniting of Science and Religion
  • 33. 3333 THE LOST DIMENSION IN RELIGION Saturday Evening Post, 1958 VERTICAL DIMENSION: Religion as depth, transcendence, and source of meaning, and purpose. The transcendent is lost when taken non-symbolically or literally. HORIZONTAL DIMENSION: Physical relationship between finite objects, as in science and technology. R S C I E N C E Inter-penetrating Dimensions. I G I O N
  • 34. BEAUTY in Science & SpiritBEAUTY in Science & Spirit • Appendix DAppendix D Summary ofSummary of Science andScience and ReligionReligion Session at theSession at the InternationalInternational Paul TillichPaul Tillich SocietySociety Meeting, 1999Meeting, 1999
  • 35. 3535“Love is stronger than death. It creates something new out of the destruction..” TIME 29 Oct 65
  • 36. 3636 TILLICH MADE THEOLOGY RELEVANT BY: 1. Reinterpreting words like FAITH AND COURAGE to remove confusion and distortion with his popular books “THE COURAGE TO BE” & “DYNAMICS OF FAITH” 2. His ANSWERING THEOLOGY, which correlated questions arising from our human finitude and predicament with answers derived from divine revelation and religious wisdom. 3. RELATING RELIGION TO CULTURE: Science & Art. TILLICH’S THEOLOGY EMPHASIZED DIALOGUE BETWEEN “YES”& “NO,” life & death, being & non-being, essence & existence freedom & destiny, TO AVOID DISTORTED EXTREMES. “The boundary is the best place for acquiring knowledge.”
  • 37. TO LEARN MORETO LEARN MORE • Chapter 6:Chapter 6: • ““A Theology forA Theology for Evolution: Haught,Evolution: Haught, Teilhard de Chardin, &Teilhard de Chardin, & Tillich.”Tillich.” • NA Paul Tillich SocietyNA Paul Tillich Society www.NAPTS.orgwww.NAPTS.org -Paul H. Carr's web page-Paul H. Carr's web page www.MirrorOfNature.orgwww.MirrorOfNature.org