In this article I overview Paul Ricœur’s understanding of divine revelation on the basis of some of his relevant writings. I argue that Ricœur’s hermeneutics of revelation has two aspects: on the one hand Ricœur’s explains the complex ways of acquiring and interpreting divine revelation especially with respect to the Bible; on the other hand, he acknowledges that revelation, originating in God’s freedom, is immediately given. In Ricœur’s view, the understanding of this immediacy is tainted by the presence of evil in human understanding which hinders the realization of revelation itself. As a critique of this standpoint I argue that the immediate givenness of revelation is logically and phenomenologically presupposed in our interpretations. Any hermeneutics of revelation entails a phenomenology of revelation. This phenomenology contains both the self-founding of human beings and, at the same time, the recognition of the absoluteness of the divine. Husserl’s phenomenology offers a way to the understanding of the immediacy of revelation through his central term of Eigenheitlichkeit. Ricœur understands this term not as genuine reality but rather as appartenance, ‘belonging to’, and reshapes its meaning in line with a hermeneutical naturalism. This explains his difficulty to conceive properly the sovereignty of revelation and the importance of phenomenology in the understanding of its immediate character.
Mezei, B. (2021). The sovereignty of revelation: On Paul Ricœur’s hermeneutics of revelation. STUDIES IN RELIGION-SCIENCES RELIGIEUSES. https://doi.org/10.1177/00084298211044814
SJR 2020: 0.172
Q1 (Religious Studies)
AIp 2020: –