Nikolaus Wandinger's Research

This research project is carried out by several institutes of the theological faculty in Innsbruck in cooperation. It aims to relate social problems (mimesis, rivalry, violence, ostracism, authority, justice and law, order, peace) and theological questions closely with one another. That way it also connects diverse theological topics and disciplines with each other (sacrality, sacrifice, rituals and rites, revelation, salvation, grace, trinity, etc.). The research project wants to clearly formulate the Christian message in the context of modernity and its problems, in order to show the positive challenge that this message poses to humanity.

The project has slowly developed over more than a decade. It is strongly inspired by René Girard's mimetic theory, which encompasses theological topics as well as anthropological and social dimensions; but it also draws from numerous other authors.

For a list of all the participants in the project click here

  • 'Sin' as a basic concept within a theological anthropology

'Sin' for some is an indispensable concept of theological language, for others, however, it is a means of psychological suppression of human persons. This research wants to contribute to the clarification of that term. It tries to bring two theological approaches in dialog with each other: Karl Rahner's transcendental theology and Raymund Schwager's dramatic theology. The goal is a concept of 'sin' that is at the same time systematically viable and pastorally responsible and thus can function within a theological anthropology. In that context the relationship between original sin and personal sin is to be clarified.

The end product was my doctoral thesis: "Sünde" als Grundbegriff einer Heuristik für eine theologische Anthropologie. Impulse aus der Theologie K. Rahners und R. Schwagers ["Sin" as a Basic Concept for a Heuristic of a Theological Anthropology. Impulses from K. Rahner and R. Schwager]. It has been published as: Die Sündenlehre als Schlüssel zum Menschen. Impulse K. Rahners und R. Schwagers zu einer Heuristik theologischer Anthropologie (Beiträge zur mimetischen Theorie). [The Doctrine on Sin as a Key to the Human Person. Impulses from K. Rahner and R. Schwager for a Heuristic of Theological Anthropology] (LIT) Münster - Thaur, August 2003. (Abstract in English).

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