A questão da forma na estética teológica de Hans Urs Von Balthasar e a sua receção eclesiológica

  • Paolo Lagatta (Student)

Student thesis: Master's Thesis


We wish to present, through the key concept of "form", the theological aesthetics of Hans Urs Von Balthasar and its ecclesiological configuration. The starting point will be the understanding of the transcendentals of the ‘being’, which analogically are considered a manifestation of the ‘absolute being of God’. From ‘beauty’ Balthasar finds the key to express the manifestation of the Love of God and what is contemplated as such becomes an object of the unique love.Balthasar applies the term Ästhetik as the a capacity of perception of the senses, adding a theological nuance to it: it is the science of the perception of the Glory of God which is revealed in Christ and that man can contemplate.Through the theories of “perception” and “ecstasy”, Balthasar describes the way to participate in the Revelation of God; realizing that all manifestations have a formal nature, we will find such possibility in the concept of Gestalt (form).Along with Gestalt, beauty can be apprehended not only materially, but it relates with the actual and concrete structure of the being, holding a unity that “informs”. In Jesus Christ Gestalt finds its maximum expression. With the analogia entis, Balthasar discovers not merely a classic formulation used by theology to retain the absolute transcendence of God and his creature, but also the key point to express Jesus of Nazareth's universal concreto, in his "once and for all existence"; ontology will be submitted to theology.Starting from the Christological formulation of the analogy we guarantee the transition to the ecclesiological vision, where aesthetics finds its capacity of expression. Firstly in the form of the Church, regarded as an expansion, communication and participation of the personality of Christ; then in Mary, the quint essential form of the Church, introduced as archetype not only to the lives of the believers, but also to the institutional and hierarchal realities of the Church; lastly in the form of all the sacraments, as determinations of the Primary Form of Revelation.
Date of Award30 Mar 2022
Original languagePortuguese
Awarding Institution
  • Universidade Católica Portuguesa
SupervisorAntónio Martins (Supervisor)


  • Revelation
  • Aesthetics
  • Transcendentals
  • Jesus Christ
  • Church
  • Mary
  • Sacraments


  • Mestrado Integrado em Teologia

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