The Eucharist in Modern Philosophy is one of the last books written by the renowned Jesuit philosopher Xavier Tilliette (1921-2018), and the first to be translated into English. Jonathan Martin Ciraulo, the translator, also provides an introduction to the thought of Tilliette and the content of this book, while Cyril O’Regan provides the foreword, noting the particular intellectual characteristics of Tilliette and his analysis of eucharistic philosophies.
In addition to being known as one of the foremost experts on the German Idealist Friedrich Schelling, Tilliette wrote voluminously on the relationship between modern philosophy and theology, particularly concerning the way in which Christology is central to the development of modern philosophy. In this volume, he extends that project to look at how various philosophers, such as Descartes, Leibniz, Hegel, Blondel, and Marion, as well as poets and mystics, such as de Chardin, Simone Weil, and Paul Claudel, thought extensively about the question of the Eucharist. The result is an enormous diversity of Eucharistic thought, from Descartes’ attempt to justify transubstantiation in light of his philosophical revolution, to Feuerbach’s supposed exposure of the contradiction inherent to sacramentality, to Antonio Rosmini’s eucharistic piety and speculation, to Maurice Blondel’s recovery and expansion of Leibniz’s notion of the substantial bond. Tilliette shows that this philosophical conversation about the Eucharist is a living tradition, as the aporias and failures of one generation provide stimulus for all that follows. Much of the work is largely historical, showing in great detail the context of each particular eucharistic philosophy, but Tilliette also evaluates the relative fruitfulness of the various eucharistic theories for philosophy, theology, and the life of the Church. This book demonstrates that the Eucharist has been, and will likely continue to be, a major impetus for philosophical reflection.
"This is a high-quality translation of an important book in philosophical theology. Xavier Tilliette, SJ, was a major figure in 20th philosophy and theology and the translation of this historical philosophy of the Eucharist, based on his Roman courses, is a very welcome development."~Cathal Doherty, SJ, University of San Francisco