The focus of chapter 3 is on Appasamy’s earliest thought, from his 1922 Oxford doctoral thesis to its expansion into two publications from 1927 and 1931. The germinating seeds of his embodiment doctrine are identified, as well as his earliest engagement with Rāmānuja’s text and terminology. While rooting himself in John’s Prologue, Appasamy’s use of the ‘Inner Dweller’, the antaryāmīn, and Rāmānuja’s doctrine of prakāras, in which individual selves and creation are considered as modes of God, combine to shape his doctrine of divine immanence in the universe. This chapter then explores how Appasamy, again from the Prologue, develops his doctrine of the Incarnation including his use of the term avatāra and along with it his views on the Cross and the Atonement. The antaryāmīn and avatāra conceptions, immanence and Incarnation, comprise the main contours of a ‘Logos Christology’ that shapes his early reading of the Johannine text.
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