Literature & Religion: Pascal, Gryphius, Lessing, Holderlin, Novalis, Kierkegaard, Dostoyevsky, Kafka

By Walter Jens; Hans Küng et al. | Go to book overview

HANS KÜNG
Religion
as the Reconciliation of
Classical Antiquity and Christianity

If one could have a living experience anywhere of the meaning of the ancien régime, of the premodern "system," or of the paradigm of Protestant theology, church, and state, it would be in the Tübingen Seminary under the despotic Duke Karl Eugen in the time of Friedrich Hölderlin ( 1770-1843) and his friends Neuffer, Magenau, and Stäudlin. After 1790, Hegel and Schelling joined the group.

Traditionally orthodox, even though refinished in the modern style, theology in Tübingen presented itself in the form of the "older Tübingen school," headed by G. C. Storr. At the time of Gryphius, Lutheran orthodoxy and seventeenth-century Catholic baroque Scholasticism were in league with Aristotle, while the enlightened theology of the eighteenth century took its stand with Leibnitz and Wolff. Storr himself called in no less a figure than Immanuel Kant to get apologetic security for his "biblical supernaturalism": Since "pure reason" was not competent to deal with truths of faith such as the Trinity, the incarnation, and the resurrection, it was also incapable of critically probing into them. It was that simple.

Hölerlin, Hegel, and Schelling, who after all lived in the same room, would have nothing to do with this fictitious compromise between dogma and criticism. "Nowhere is the old system so

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Literature & Religion: Pascal, Gryphius, Lessing, Holderlin, Novalis, Kierkegaard, Dostoyevsky, Kafka
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