A 10 page research paper that deals with the topic of 'holiness' as an attribute of the divine. Throughout history, humanity has had a sense that divine force was at work in the universe. The power of nature and the awesome spectacle of life and death caused primitive peoples to tremble at the power of that they attributed to divine forces. Christianity has traditionally stressed the loving and benevolent nature of God as exhibited by Jesus of Nazareth. The writer argues that the clearest way for the ordinary person to apprehend the holy nature of God is to see its reflection in sanctified individuals. This perspective is compared to others, such as those of Barth and Otto. Bibliography lists 17 sources.
the loving and benevolent nature of God as exhibited by Jesus of Nazareth. However, theologians in the early part of the century, such as Karl Barth, also recognized the awesome
power of the divine and the psychological trepidation that this causes as a characteristic of the sacred. In general, theological speculation on the nature of holiness encompasses a
wide range of opinions. Even within the scriptures themselves, it is possible to find multiple connotations for concerning the terms "holy," "holiness" and "sacred." Many theologians feel that the best
reflection of what is holy in God is to look at how the rare saintly individual, such as Mother Theresa, reflects divine nature. An examination of twentieth century thought on
this subject will show that, while all of the arguments appear to be equally sound and based on Christian dogma and theology, this concept?that Gods holy nature is reflected in
the world-- appears to be the way that it can be most easily understood by the average layman. Metaphysical Perception of Sacred or "Holy" Certain characteristics that are associated
with the world have long been taken as reflections of the divine, which assumes that humanity recognizes what constitutes a perfection and whether God possess it?presumably "attribution of qualities like
thankfulness, courage, and chastity" are ruled out (Geach 333). According to Artola, the two essential characteristics of the sacred are separation and inviolability (10). The sacred remains such, remains "holy,"
as long as it remains separate and apart from humanity and thus, inviolable. What is exposed to human touch is profaned (Artola 10). By virtue of its superhuman origin and
the powers that this conveys on the holy, the sacred is a force that can be malign as well as beneficial (Artola 10). The sacred is, essentially, the element