The “inhabitants of stars” according to Karl Rahner Cover Image

„Mieszkańcy gwiazd” według Karla Rahnera
The “inhabitants of stars” according to Karl Rahner

Author(s): Jacek Rodzeń
Subject(s): Christian Theology and Religion, Philosophy
Published by: Wydawnictwo Naukowe Uniwersytetu Kardynała Stefana Wyszyńskiego w Warszawie
Keywords: Rahner Karl; theology; extraterrestrial intelligence; space; self-transcendence; christocentrism

Summary/Abstract: In his enormous literary-production Karl Rahner (1904–1984) did not omit the question of intelligent extraterrestrial beings. Despite the fact that his statements about this issue are sporadic, fragmented and scattered, they nevertheless give a fairly clear and original philosophical and theological picture of this problem. Rahner presents the question of hypothetical extraterrestrial intelligence in a metaphysical perspective in which the cosmos is constantly coming into being as a self-transcending reality. According to Rahner the cosmos with its physical laws and in accordance with the purposeful plan of its Creator is oriented not only towards humans (anthropocentrism), but also towards other embodied spiritual beings (subjectivity-centrism). In this perspective there is a real possibility that other intelligent beings besides us exist. From the theological point of view, according to Rahner these hypothetical beings, just like humans, are exposed to the self-communicating God-Trinity through the Logos-Christ-Redeemer (christocentrism).

  • Issue Year: 52/2016
  • Issue No: 3
  • Page Range: 153-174
  • Page Count: 22
  • Language: Polish