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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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(p.203) Conclusion
Rudolf Otto and the Concept of Holiness

Melissa Raphael

Oxford University Press

The religions that rely greatly on the bible have always attempted to balance an understanding of God's love with how they hope to receive his justice, since salvation becomes cheap without justice. However, attaining justice without love does not allow reconciliation, and the wounds of human history will never be healed. While human reason is not capable of conceiving of the balance between God's justice and love, its familiarity is encompassed by the fascinans element of the holy. Compared to justice, love is less readily associated with the numinous. The reliance of Otto's concepts on how the consuming fire evokes the divine presence's numinous energy may not comply with late modern theology since this is associated with the dangers of global climate change. In this chapter, we find that developing a numinous consciousness into a concept of holiness requires intellectual interest.

Keywords:   justice, love, God, balance, numinous, intellectual interest, numinous consciousness

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