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EcospiritReligions and Philosophies for the Earth$
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Laurel Kearns and Catherine Keller

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780823227457

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: March 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fso/9780823227457.001.0001

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Hearing the Outcry of Mute Things: Toward a Jewish Creation Theology

Hearing the Outcry of Mute Things: Toward a Jewish Creation Theology

(p.337) Hearing the Outcry of Mute Things: Toward a Jewish Creation Theology

Lawrence Troster

Fordham University Press

This chapter utilizes the work of Hans Jonas as the basis for suggesting the way in which a new Jewish creation theology can develop. A creation theology in the present time must incorporate the findings of modern cosmology and evolutionary biology as its fundamental facts. The Kabbalistic idea of tzimtzum, or the withdrawal of God at the time of creation, in the manner Jonas considers it, can be utilized for a creation theology that allows for God's nonsupernatural involvement with the world. Jonas's theology is also based on sound philosophical foundations, and from these foundations he also produced a model of environmental ethics. Another Kabbalistic idea, the Sitra Achra (Aramaic, the Other Side) can also be utilized to express the idea that God can be both the ground of law and novelty; the source of creativity but also the necessary process of creative destruction.

Keywords:   Jewish theology, ecological theology, creation theology, Kaballa, Hans Jonas, tzimtzum

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