For You Alone: Emmanuel Levinas and the Answerable Life
1 Jan 2014
Terry a Veling
Description: The works of Emmanuel Levinas, a survivor of the Nazi horror, are striking in the constancy of their thought and the strength of their appeal. We are not condemned to evil and hatred; rather, we are called to be-for-each-other. For You Alone explores the relational and religious quality of Levinas' work. Our lives are always twofold rather than "one and the same." A relational life is dependent on encounters that are revelatory. Revelation means that life is no mere sameness but is tied to the revelation of the other, to you. Here is transcendence par excellence. Here is what the name of God signifies, the relational and ethical bond that takes us outside ourselves toward the other in our midst. What could be more natural, more human, or more divine than to speak of the relational quality of life? An answerable life means that we are asked after, called, required. "Here I am under your gaze," Levinas writes, "obliged to you, your servant. In the name of God."