The Secular in Relation to the Holy

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Abstract

Dr. King quotes theologian and philosopher Paul Tillich's "Systematic Theology." Dr. King's doctoral degree is in systematic theology from Boston University and his dissertation is on Paul Tillich. According to Tillich, secular and holy correlate and cannot act separately. Tillich states, "The holy embraces itself and the secular."

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The Secular in Relation to the Holy
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Transcript

[Page 1] 1c [Underlined:The Secular in relation to the Holy] "The secular in the realm of preliminary concerns. It lacks ultimate concern; it lacks holiness. All finite relations are in themselves secular. Name of them is holy. [Crossed out Text:The Holy and the Secular]" (ST,218) From this, Tillich says, it would [Page 2] 2c seem that the holy and the secular exclude each other. But actually they include each other. "The holy embraces itself and the secular, precisley as the divine embraces itself and the demonic." (ST,218) Nothing is essentially [Page 3] 3c and inherently secular. Everything secular is potentially sacred. Tillich goes on to add that the only way the holy finds expression is through the secular. It is only through the finite that the infinite finds expression. Or to put it in [Page 4] 4c in [Illegible] words, "it is through holy "objects" that holiness must become actual."(218) The attempt to separate the sacred and the secular is for Tillich a dangerous if not an impossible [Illegible]. Indeed he finds the {Crossed out Text:Illegible] heart of [sin?] [Page 5] 5c in this [unreconciled?] in duality. Sin, he says, or is a state of things in which the holy and the secular are separated, struggling with each other and trying to conquer each other. It is the state in which God is not,"all in all," the state in which [Page 6] 6 c God is "in addition to" all other thing. (ST, 218)
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