Paul Tillich, the God Beyond God, and Theism Transcended

Paul Tillich makes an interesting point about theism – we have to, in a sense, transcend theism. I take Tillich to be saying that we have to abandon our concepts of God and allow the God ‘beyond’ theism is make Himself known to us – the God beyond god, to use his terminology. In ‘The Courage to Be’, he basically argues against a view of God as a being alongside other beings, as opposed to Being itself, and his criticism of what generally gets called ‘theistic personalism’, is quite blistering.

Then Tillich goes into a whole bunch of stuff that he’s famous for, ultimate concern, courage, absolute faith, all that stuff, and he totally loses me. Seems like when he talks about general kind of subjects, like in ‘The Shaking of the Foundations’, he’s way better than in his more specific analyses of things like faith, god, etc.


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