Personal Becoming

Personal Becoming

Personal Becoming

Personal Becoming

Excerpt

A foreword is usually an afterword, written when the work is done, an occasion to do things the work itself couldn't do -- such as thank those who helped it happen -- and things it perhaps should have done, but failed to do. Both of these needs become clear after the fact, though it often helps the reader, as he eases his way into the book proper, to find the kinds of statements one remembers to put into forewords. I will divide these remarks into two sections, the first to preview this study, the second to introduce Rahner's approach to Thomas.

1. Approaching This Study . In 1969 I presented my dissertation at Louvain entitled Personization: Person as Becoming in Karl Rahner's Philosophical Anthropology. In that study I limited myself to Rahner's four purely philosophical works: GW, HW, "Introduction au concept de philosophie existentiale chez Heidegger," and "A Verdade em S. Tomás de Aquino." I described it as the first of two studies, the second of which, inappropriate for a purely philosophical dissertation, would continue the investigation into Rahner's theological works, still continuing. Since Rahner's relevant theological writings have in general been short, being mostly articles, in journals and lexicons, and contributions to the series Quaestiones Disputatae, and since I am not a professional theologian, the study of the concept of person as found in his theological anthropology has taken the form of an exposition of the development, in selected essays in STh, of that concept as already found and metaphysically grounded in his philosophical anthropology. The word development is not idly chosen. Rahner's Personbegriff underwent changes between 1937, when he was at work on GW, and (at least) 1965, the date of STh VI.

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