Maurice Blondel effected a new beginning in Catholic thought. In a highly original manner he took up modern philosophy – Descartes, Leibniz, Malebranche, Kant, Hegel, positivism – and developed a philosophy, which appropriated the ‘principle of immanence’ of these thinkers and opened it to a consideration of Transcendence and historical Revelation in Christianity. The reception of his work was hampered by immanent difficulties, personal problems (his blindness would hinder the writing of the later works) and the unfortunate situation of the Church at the time of its wrangling with modernism.
Nevertheless Blondel’s influence is evident in the so-called ‘Nouvelle théologie’, as also on Rahner’s transcendental theology and consequently on the movement of renewal that took place in Catholic theology between the modernist controversy and Vatican II.
Ever since the important study for its time from Eugen Seiterich, there has been continuous research on Blondel at Freiburg i. Br. This would include work from B. Welte, K. Lehmann and his circle of students. In its own way The Department of Fundamental Theology continues this tradition.
The information in these pages wishes to furnish Blondel-research with basic information, the complete texts of Blondel studies that are already out of print, together with notification of relevant conferences. This site is still in construction and the designer would welcome additions and corrections.
Albert Raffelt, Freiburg im Breisgau - English Version: Michael Conway
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