Stop yourself from defining God

Jean-Luc Marion comments on his ‘Parcours de la distance’: “Distance defines God. A God without distance, known and immediately accessible, would sink to the rank of idol of the city […] Distance, as I understand it, does not have the meaning of a distance and an absence, but designates the gap which alone allows the encounter

Marion is representative of those Catholic philosophers who leave their independence to God, rather than appropriating it as the majority of Islamist, Christian and Jewish sects do. In this distance, philosophers join scientists who refuse to consider natural laws as fundamental, that is to say, to appropriate Nature. Reality refocuses around what the human mind is capable of apprehending.

Is it a reduction of knowledge, or even its confinement? On the contrary !!! The mind turns towards the unknown from its core identity. It truly opens itself to knowledge. When religious people appropriate the image of God and scientists that of Nature, it is there that they truly enclose reality between their views, by having constructed a dogmatic shell on its periphery. An eye that looks inside and not outside!

I would rephrase Marion’s speech as follows: Distance prevents us from defining God; it only allows the meeting. So the inaccessibility of our origin is valid. We are indeed its children, and not its creators hidden in the shadows, in invisibility from the divine point of view. We are actually on Earth, and not already commenting on the situation in Heaven.


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