THE FEELING OF TIME: BONHOEFFER ON TEMPORALITY AND THE FULLY HUMAN LIFE

Robert Vosloo

Abstract


This essay explores the notion of temporality in Bonhoeffer’s thought. After an
introductory reference to an early text of Bonhoeffer that reveals his passion for
movement and the moment, the essay comments briefly on the direction of
Emmanuel Levinas’s reflections on temporality. It is argued that both Levinas and
Bonhoeffer link their understanding of temporality to otherness and death. The main
part of the essay traces Bonhoeffer’s understanding of the timeful nature of reality,
with special reference to his Berlin dissertations, Sanctorum Communio and Act
and Being, two of his Barcelona sermons, his Ethics and his Prison writings. The
last section of the essay offers Bonhoeffer’s timeful engagement with life as a
challenge to a reductive economization of time.

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.7833/99-0-674

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ISSN 2305-445X (online); ISSN 0254-1807 (print)

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