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A History

of Christian




















(vol I - 1951)

























(vol II - 1957)






















to be
































































The End of
































This page serves to maintain and control cross-referencing among elements of pages pertaining to philosophy, theology, and sociology. Typically, that will involve the works of authors Tillich, Berger, Benedict, Van de Pol, and Dulles.








Systematic Theology – volume I (Introduction)


This is the first part of Paul Tillich’s three-volume Systematic Theology, one of the most profound statements of the Christian message ever composed and the summation and definitive presentation of the theology of the most influential and creative American theologian of the twentieth century.


In this path-breaking volume Tillich presents the basic method and statement of his system - his famous “correlation” of man’s deepest questions with theological answers. Here the focus is on the concepts of being and reason. Tillich shows how the quest for revelation is integral to reason itself. In the same way a description of the inner tensions of being leads to the recognition that the quest for God is implied in finite being.


Here also Tillich defines his thought in relation to philosophy and the Bible and sets forth his famous doctrine of God as the “Ground of Being.” Thus God is understood not as a being existing beside other beings, but as being-itself or the power of being in everything. God cannot be made into an object; religious knowledge is, therefore, necessarily symbolic.





Systematic Theology – volume II:

Existence and the Christ


In this volume, the second of his three-volume reinterpretation of Christian theology, Paul Tillich comes to grips with the central idea of his system - the doctrine of the Christ. Man’s predicament is described as the state of “estrangement” from himself, from his world, and from the divine ground of his self and his world. This situation drives man to the quest for a new state of things, in which reconciliation and reunion conquer estrangement. This is the quest for the Christ.





Systematic Theology – volume III     on order, $22.50+ ISBN-13: 978-0226803395 – 441 pages

Life and the Spirit: History and the Kingdom of God


In this volume, the third and last of his Systematic Theology, Paul Tillich sets forth his ideas of the meaning of human life, the doctrine of the Spirit and the church, the trinitarian symbols, the relation of history to the Kingdom of God, and the eschatological symbols. He handles this subject matter with powerful conceptual ability and intellectual grace.

The problem of life is ambiguity. Every process of life has its contrast within itself, thus driving man to the quest for unambiguous life or life under the impact of the Spirtual Presence. The Spirtual Presence conquers the negativities of religion, culture, and morality, and the symbols anticipating Eternal Life present the answer to the problem of life.



Le courage d'être (1952)


Published a year after the first volume of Systematic Theology appeared, this text examines some historical concepts of Courage, including its primacy over faith. It then faces these off against the three dimensions of Anxiety, incidentally laying philosophical groundwork to the several Bergerian themes of alienation and pathological anxiety.


The Sacred Canopy:

Elements of a Sociological

Theory of Religion

by Peter L. Berger

(Paperback - Sep 1, 1990)

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Other Editions: Hardcover, Paperback

Excerpt - Back Matter: "... Peter Berger and Stanley Pullberg, "Reification and the Sociological Critique of Consciousness," ..."Surprise me! See a random page in this book.





A History of Christian Thought,

From its Judaic and Hellenistic Origins to Existentialism


Previously published as two separate volumes:

A History of Christian Thought and

Perspectives on 19th and 20th Century Protestant Theology (accessed separate from the next panel)


Preface to the Touchstone Edition


This history of Christian thought combines into one volume two books of Paul Tillich's lectures that have been previously pub­lished. The first part appeared under the title A History of Christian Thought, beginning with the Graeco-Roman prepara­tions for Christianity and ending with the post-Reformation development in Protestant theology. The second part first ap­peared as Perspectives on Nineteenth and Twentieth Century Protestant Theology~ beginning with the rise of the Enlighten­ment and ending with the theology of Kari Barth and modem existentialism.* A History of Christian Thought originated as lectures delivered by Tillich at Union Theological Seminary in New York, stenographically recorded and transcribed by Peter N. John and distributed by him in a small first edition. A second edition appeared shortly thereafter, in which Peter John corrected a number of errors. At that time he acknowledged the need for a thorough. revision of the text for matters of style and content. This I tried to accomplish in the first published edition by Har­per & Row, 1968. This edition now appears unaltered in this volume.


The second part of this volume contains tape-recorded lectures which Paul Tillich delivered at the Divinity School of the Uni­versity of Chicago during the spring quarter of the 1962-63 school year and is based entirely on his spoken words.


Tillich's history of the Christian tradition appears at a time when interest in new theological fads that come and go quickly has faded dramatically. The demise of Tillich's thought was pre­maturely announced. In the world of English-speaking theology no movement bas yet arisen to eclipse the influence of Paul Tillich. The wider dissemination of this influence, to a new gen­eration of college and seminary students, as well as to theologians who have a lot of catching up to do, is very much to be desired. Tillich introduces students to the roots of their own religious traditions, making the symbols of their faith more meaningful for today. He was and is a truly great teacher of theology.



Chicago, Illinois March 1972



Perspectives on 19th and 20th Century Protestant Theology


Edited and with an Introduction by CARL E. BRAATEN


This major posthumous work of Paul Tillich presents, in the author's words, "the drama of the rise of humanism in the midst of Christianity." Tillich shares with us his reflections and perspectives on major periods, trends, movements, and figures in two centuries of Prot­estantism as it underwent a "continuous series of attempts to unite the diverging elements of the modem mind."


PERSPFCTIVES can also be read as the mirroring of those sources which exerted the greatest impact on Tillich's mind in his earlier formative years. The author traces the philosophy of religion, dog­matic elements within the church, and historical criticism of the Bible and tradition.  These chapters document clearly how Tillich's thought moves with penetrating insight and empathy on the boundary between theology and philos­ophy.


The book begins with the period of Protestant Orthodoxy and shows how the Enlightenment presupposed and rejected both. A major chapter is devoted to Kant and the philosophy of the Enlightenment:  it becomes clear how Tillich is both the heir and the severest critic of the Enlightenment tradition. Tillich goes on to describe the reaction of the Romanticists against the Enlightenment, the emergence of the two great syntheses of Schleiermacher and Hegel, and the subsequent breakdown of these systems.


With an economy of words, Tillich gets to the heart of the thinking of such radical, prophetic voices as Schelling and Kierkegaard, Marx and Nietzsche, Bultmann and Barth. Every paragraph opens a new window into the profound mind of this masterful interpreter of the Protestant heritage, as well as bringing the reader into a lively encounter with the voices of the recent past. The whole book is a demonstration of Tillich's dictum that every interpretation is a living union of the interpreted and the interpreter.




The End of Conventional Christianity (1967)

by W. H. Van De Pol (Author)


Presumably, all of this book will have tremendous value. However, at the moment only chapters 5-10 are on-line, because these essentially pick A History of Christian Thought up from where Tillich left it, he having terminated the latter just at the point where the foundation (ie Heidegger) of his excitement about Being started. Containing also an excellent analysis of Courage.



Much of what is offered here may be better appreciated when seen appointed to contemporary moral issues. Essentialism, taken to a not surprising extreme, is devastatingly applied as a Logical Wedge in the Callahan article where fundamental rights might be assigned to a fetus.



Last update on 7-October-2007 at 9:22 AM.