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Rudolf Otto and the Concept of Holiness$
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Melissa Raphael

Print publication date: 1997

Print ISBN-13: 9780198269328

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198269328.001.0001

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Holiness and Liberation

Holiness and Liberation

(p.175) 7 Holiness and Liberation
Rudolf Otto and the Concept of Holiness

Melissa Raphael

Oxford University Press

One of the dominant themes in twentieth-century holiness discourse involves establishing the distinction between natural or mundane value and holy value. The focus of contemporary theology and religious studies have shifted from looking into the value of the holy in abstraction to theorizing instead in the context of historical application. The earth is viewed to be the venue wherein we are able to conduct holiness discourse and the numinous disvaluation of the natural is found to be associated with threats of nuclear devastation. Several emancipatory theologians have arrived at a consensus about how the Western Graeco-Christian heritage of transcendental theology and the devaluation of matter veer away from nature and the bodies of sacrality. In this chapter, we explore the elements required for a liberative theology while suggesting how numinous consciousness may be perceived as the dynamic of criticism of modern desacralization.

Keywords:   sacrality, nature, modern desacralization, liberative theology, mundane value

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