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Approaching the EndA Theological Exploration of Death and Dying$
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David Albert Jones

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199287154

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199287154.001.0001

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Both Something Suffered and a Human Act: Death in the Thought of Karl Rahner

Both Something Suffered and a Human Act: Death in the Thought of Karl Rahner

Chapter:
(p.144) 6 Both Something Suffered and a Human Act: Death in the Thought of Karl Rahner
Source:
Approaching the End
Author(s):

David Albert Jones

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199287154.003.0007

Karl Rahner develops his own distinctive theological approach to death in Zur Theologie des TodesOn the Theology of Death published in 1958. For Rahner, death is an event that affects the human being as a whole, not just the body, while leaving the immortal soul essentially unchanged. Understood as the conclusion of a personal life, death must itself be construed as an act. Rahner seems, like Ambrose, to interpret fulfilment as belonging to death as such. Nevertheless, as with Augustine, Rahner's thought continues to develop and his discussion of ‘the liberty of the sick’, while flawed, represents an important contribution to moral reflection on end of life issues.

Keywords:   euthanasia, fear of death, Ambrose, Rahner, soul, suicide, theology of death, martyrdom, separated soul

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