Title

No-God: Reflections on Masao Abe's symbol of god as self-emptying

Department

Philosophy & Religious Studies

Document Type

Article

Publication Source

Horizons

Publication Date

2002-01-01

Volume

29

Issue

1

First Page

64

Last Page

79

Abstract

Buddhist thinking centers not on a transcendent God, but on the nothingness and emptiness of Sunyata. Nevertheless, Masao Abe's reflections on the symbol of God as self-emptying can enhance our understanding of what God means. Abe interprets the self-humbling and self-sacrificing act of Jesus as a manifestation that God has vacated the transcendence of otherness in becoming world. These reflections allow us to consider a religious perspective that centers not on God, but on world and the continuum of living-dying-relatedness that represents the reciprocal and mutual interrelated-ness that is world. In being returned to world, we are invited to participate in the original and originating activity of God as giving of self in compassion to one another. God is to be experienced not as a transcendent center, but as the fundamental meaning of world and its context of interrelatedness.

DOI

10.1017/S0360966900009725

https://doi.org/10.1017/S0360966900009725

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