Primal Christian Life Experience and Eschatological Time
The turning away from theoretical comportment and the concurrent attempt to gain new access to life as it is being pre-theoretically enacted and lived – the effort to go back to original experience and to find a conceptuality adequate to it – are parallel developments in German philosophy and theology at the turn of the 19th and 20th century. In his effort to find a hermeneutic return to “life”, for the young Heidegger – as is shown by his lectures on the phenomenology of religion – primal Christianity appeared as a fundamental paradigm. / It was by the hermeneutic transformation of Husserlian phenomenology that Heidegger attempted to make life accessible – life as it was experienced in primal Christianity and had been described in The Epistles of Paul. From this perspective, the religious-theological relevance of the interrelated structure of “Erlebnis”, “experience”, and “understanding” originates from the hermeneutic-phenomenological thematization and unravelling of the believing comportment, of how the believer enacts his/her faith. The paper undertakes the attempt to reconstruct the young Heidegger’s path of thinking with an eye to some major themes of the phenomenology of religion course, with special regard to the kairological conception of time elaborated in it.