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5/25/2016 8:20 am  #1

Phenomenology and Classical Theism

I've been doing some reading, and it appears to me the classical theistic philosophers view on Being as that which is intelligible, and deeply connected with thought has similarities with Phenomenology. Does anyone know any resources that go more deeply into the relationship between classical theism, and Phenomenology?


5/25/2016 2:11 pm  #2

Re: Phenomenology and Classical Theism

Well, I would consider myself a Realist Phenomenologist (a follower of the early Husserl and his Munich disciples). I'm sure I've posted it elsewhere but I think Husserl's epistemology of intentionality and giveness as presented in The Logical Investigations holds the key to providing a necessary replacement to the somewhat crude epistemology Thomism and its cohorts inherited from Aristotle (which still contains elements of proto-Lockean 'Imagism' in its treatment of phantasms). His - Husserl's - Ideas II also contains a plethora of interesting insights about bodily phenomenology which fit right in with the hylemorphic account of the soul.
As for others works, some of Husserl's disciples later ventured from phenomenology to ontology, producing work which should be of great interest to Classical Theists. Of special note would be Edith Stein, who in her last three works attempted to synthesize Husserlian phenomenology with Thomism, and Hedwig Conrad Martius who developed Husserl's phenomenology of life into a Noe-Aristotelean philosophy of nature and natural theology (if people are interested in essays on her drop me a message). Most important of all though would be Roman Ingarden who develops a powerful and fruitful ontology from a realist phenomenological basis. For interesting essays please see:

Ingarden on Substance
Ingarden on Modes of Being
Ingarden on Substance

As to latter figures there is a small but thriving school of Catholic phenomenologists that began with Dietrich von Hildebrand (his best translated work in that field is What is Philosophy) and his admirer JP II. For their foremost representative look up the works of Josef Seifert, particularly his What is Life? and Introduction to Realist Phenomenology (Seifert has loads of untranslated works on Natural Theology including a phenomenological defense of the Ontological Argument). Phenomenologicaly inclined Natural Theology tends to be Augustianian in nature and focus more on arguments such as the OA and the proof from Eternal Truths.

Last edited by DanielCC (5/25/2016 2:12 pm)


5/25/2016 2:43 pm  #3

Re: Phenomenology and Classical Theism

Heidegger is in a kind of agon with it as he is in a different and very sympathetic way with Aristotle. See:

"Duns Scotus' Theory of the Categories and of Meaning" PhD Thesis, DePaul Univ., 1978 translated by Harold Robbins

"The Problem of Sin in Luther" in

Fighting to the death "the noonday demon" of Acedia.
My Books
It is precisely “values” that are the powerless and threadbare mask of the objectification of beings, an objectification that has become flat and devoid of background. No one dies for mere values.
~Martin Heidegger

9/29/2016 3:15 am  #4

Re: Phenomenology and Classical Theism

Iwpoe, what is your take on Heidegger's criticism of Thomas regarding the 'oblivion of Being?'

"And this is one of the most crucial definitions for the whole of Christianity; that the opposite of sin is not virtue but faith."
― Søren Kierkegaard

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