Chapter

The Concept of Holiness

Melissa Raphael

in Rudolf Otto and the Concept of Holiness

Published in print September 1997 | ISBN: 9780198269328
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191683602 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198269328.003.0011
The Concept of Holiness

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Although theists would often agree that holiness is perceived to be the essential feature of God's characteristics, derivative holiness may be construed with different meanings as it is viewed to be both a quality of things and places and an experience. It is important to note, though, that a strict definition of the holy is rejected, since the essence is only evoked and cannot be conceived rationally; and since holiness is found to be a sui generis category of reality, it still cannot be defined concretely. In this chapter, we attempt to provide an outline regarding the sense that this word is used in. We first look into the associated semantics of ‘holiness’ and ‘holy’, while providing an examination of the ontological status of holiness.

Keywords: God's characteristics; derivative holiness; semantics; holy; definition; sui generis

Chapter.  6100 words. 

Subjects: Christian Theology

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