The Unknown Body of Christ: Towards a Retrieval of the Early Panikkar's Christology of Religions
Author(s)Ranstrom, Erik John
KeywordsChristianity and Hinduism
Theology of Religions
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AbstractThesis advisor: Catherine Cornille
The purpose of this dissertation is to retrieve the early Panikkar's christology of religions, especially in "Meditacion sobre Melquisdedec" and Le mystere du culte dans l'hindouisme et le christianisme. As opposed to the later Panikkar's pluralist, cosmotheandric christology, the early Panikkar privileges the primacy of Jesus Christ amidst a wider considersation of the value and significance of the religions. This dissertation will also situate the early Panikkar's christology of religions against the background of Dominus Iesus and recent systemtatic theologians seeking to move beyond pluralist christologies. The early Panikkar's understanding of Incarnation meets their criteria for an inclusivist theology of religions, but also challenges the asymmetricality of their christologies, expanding the possibilities for inter-religious learning and transformation. Specifically, Panikkar's early dialogue with karman and advaita illuminates the meaning of Jesus' sacrificial existence and the Church's eucharistic participation in that existence through comparison, shedding light upon the centrality of liturgical and paschal transformation in the Christian tradition. This christocentric comparative theology will be constrasted with Panikkar's later, syncretistic appropriation of Hinduism, influenced by Abhishiktananda's quest for Hindu-Christian synthesis, and will conclude by calling for a renewal of interest in neglected aspects of Panikkar's vast corpus.
Thesis (PhD) — Boston College, 2014.
Submitted to: Boston College. Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.