The Father’s Eternal Freedom: The Personalist Trinitarian Ontology of John Zizioulas

By Dario Chiapetti and Norman Russell (editor)

A justification of Zizioulas’ controversial ontology on epistemological, patristic and theological lines.

ISBN: 9780227177730

Description

John Zizioulas is renowned for his controversial reflection on the ontological freedom as the cause and cipher of God’s being, which also has important implications for anthropology, ecclesiology and ecumenical dialogue. This view is bound up with a personalist conception of the Trinity, recognised in the teaching of the Greek Church Fathers, in which the person represents the primary ontological category. In particular, Zizioulas shows how, by virtue of the Father, personhood coincides with absolute freedom.

In The Father’s Eternal Freedom, Dario Chiapetti explores this ontology. Taking into account Zizioulas’ epistemological principles, his patristic reading and his theological development, the author systematically presents Zizioulas’ thesis, verifying its conformity to dogma and its internal coherence. Chiapetti analyses how Zizioulas’ proposal brings back to the centre of systematic theology the teaching of the Greek Fathers, especially the Cappadocians, and the apophatic horizon of dogmatic reflection. Such reflection pushes the discourse on God to its maximum degree, identifying and bringing out, rather than resolving or attenuating, the aporetic terms that structure it.

Additional information

Dimensions 234 × 156 mm
Format

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Trade Information JPOD

About the Author

Dario Chiapetti is a presbyter in the Archdiocese of Florence and gained his Doctorate in Sacred Theology at the Facoltà Teologica dell’Italia Centrale. His research interests include Trinitarian Theology, especially in its ontological foundations and in the Eastern perspective, as well as anthropology and Franciscan theology. A former architect, he is also interested in the relationship between liturgy and architecture.

Contents

Foreword
Preface
Note on Citations
Abbreviations

Introduction: General Aspects of the Figure and Thought of Zizioulas

Part 1: Zizioulas’ Reading of the Fathers: The Notion of Person and the Doctrine of the Monarchy of the Father
1. The Emergence of the Attribution of Primary Ontological Content to the Notion of Person in Trinitarian Reflection
2. The Father, the Ontological Principle of the Triune and One Being of God

Part 2: Zizioulas’ Theological Development: The Father, Free Cause of Being as Personhood-Freedom
3. The Father: ‘The Ultimate Reality of God’s Personal Existence’
4. The Freedom that ‘Springs from the Very Way the Hypostases are Constituted’: From the Freedom of the Father, the Freedom of God

Concluding Remarks: Zizioulas’ Bold Exercise in Theological Reflection

Bibliography
Index

Extracts

Endorsements and Reviews

Dr Chiapetti has produced a comprehensive, profound and fair discussion of Patristic theology, as presented in my work, particularly with regard to its ontological significance. A most successful attempt to bring to the surface the immense significance of Patristic theology for human existence.
John D. Zizioulas, Metropolitan of Pergamon

Despite being the most influential living Greek theologian, John Zizioulas’ publications are largely occasional. Chiapetti knows the thickets of Zizioulas’ oeuvre like no one else. His defence of his theology – against all comers – tests its theological roots and explores its philosophical implications for notions of personhood and freedom. Impressive!
Andrew Louth, Professor Emeritus of Patristic and Byzantine Studies, Durham University