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Seeing the World and Knowing GodHebrew Wisdom and Christian Doctrine in a Late-Modern Context$
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Paul S. Fiddes

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199644100

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199644100.001.0001

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The Text of the World and the Comprehensiveness of Wisdom

The Text of the World and the Comprehensiveness of Wisdom

(p.324) 10 The Text of the World and the Comprehensiveness of Wisdom
Seeing the World and Knowing God

Paul S. Fiddes

Oxford University Press

Through reflection on ‘space’ and ‘place’ in the thought of Michel de Certeau, this chapter begins by asking whether it is possible to bring together a celebration of the open text of the world with the privileging of a particular sacred text as repository of wisdom (‘canon’). In Hebrew thinking, wisdom is identified with Torah as a contraction of inexhaustible wisdom to an accessible span. Thus, we cannot distinguish absolutely between a sacred text and all other texts: a canon into which wisdom is contracted requires us to read the text in relation to what lies adjacent to its boundary, namely all texts in the world. The whole world-text can be conceived as the body of God, its signs formed through being held in the interweaving relations of the Trinity; there is, however, a unique contraction of wisdom in the body of Christ because the pattern of his life fits exactly into the movements of self-giving in God.

Keywords:   text, canon, space, Michel de Certeau, Torah, contraction, body of God, body of Christ, Trinity

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