Paul Tillich- Symbols overview

  • Created by: _bella_
  • Created on: 29-05-19 10:20
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  • Paul Tillich- Symbols
    • 4 main functions for symbols
      • 3) They open up levels of reality that otherwise are closed to us
      • 2) They participate in that to which they point
      • They open up levels and dimensions of the soul that correspond to those levels of reality
      • 1) they point to something beyond themselves (i.e. God)
    • Strengths
      • Symbolic language has deep + profound meaning that can only be explained in a limited way
      • Rel. language is symbolic + points towards there being a God, it conveys fundamental truths
      • Example of the flag as a symbol as it "participates in the power of the king or the nation for which it stands and symbolises"
    • Criticisms
      • Symbols change overtime- hindu sign for peace was adopted by Nazi's
      • We can't try to understand God fully as he is transcendant
      • Paul Edwards- symbols do not convey factual knowledge, thus they are meaningless
      • The truth symbols direct us to cannot be verified or falsified as they are subjective + created by humans
      • Technically one needs to be involved in the language game to understand the meaning of symbols in religion, if you aren't they become harder to understand

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