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Eternal God / Saving Time$
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George Pattison

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780198724162

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198724162.001.0001

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Time, Eternally: Will

Time, Eternally: Will

(p.79) 3 Time, Eternally: Will
Eternal God / Saving Time

George Pattison

Oxford University Press

This chapter follows the further development of the historical sequence running from Spinoza to Hegel and going on through Schelling to Nietzsche. But where Hegelianism seeks the transcendence of time in timeless contemplation, Schelling grounds eternity in a free act of supra-temporal will. In Nietzsche, this is thoroughly temporalized in the idea of the will to eternal recurrence. Although there is no consensus as to the meaning of eternal recurrence, it is argued that it represents a view of time itself as eternal, but this eternity can no longer be known, only willed or sung. Following Nietzsche, many 19th and 20th century mystics have similarly found eternity in time, only ‘will’ has been replaced by will-less Gelassenheit or letting-be, a view for which both Eastern and Western traditions offer support.

Keywords:   Schelling, freedom, will, time, Nietzsche, eternal recurrence, song, Gelassenheit

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