Examine the significance of Gustavo Gutiérrez quote from Dietrich Bonhoeffer: "Freedom is not something man has for himself but something he has for others." Accordingly, what is the relationship...

Examine the significance of Gustavo Gutiérrez quote from Dietrich Bonhoeffer: "Freedom is not something man has for himself but something he has for others." Accordingly, what is the relationship of this statement with regard to Gutierrez's emphasis on Eschatological Promises as it relates to the liberation process?

1 Answer | Add Yours

akannan's profile pic

Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted on

The idea of "freedom is not something man has form himself but something he has for others" helps to illuminate a social construction.  For Gutiérrez, one of the significant challenges of the Church in Latin American communities is its absent embrace of social reality.  Bonhoeffer's quote relates freedom to the idea that one's actions have direct implications on others and freedom exists, in part, outside of one's self. Gutiérrez suggests that there can be greater meaning in Eschatological Promises when it seeks to link itself to the temporal condition of social injustice that faces so many:  "“Salvation is not something otherworldly,” but rather “something that embraces human reality, transforms it, and leads it to its fullness in Christ.”   Gutiérrez makes the argument the church has failed to understand the need to connect its own actions to the social conditions that surround individuals in their daily life.  In this, freedom is not something purely individualistic.  Rather, it is something offered to another, helping them realize the power of spiritual identity both in this life and beyond it.  Through this, Gutierrez makes the argument that the liberation process can be actualized and understood in a more profound way.  

The "self- creation of man" and the remedying of social injustice are elements that are embedded in this notion of freedom, something that Gutiérrez sees as essential to the fulfillment of Eschatological Promises. Linking this argument to a growing condition of exploitation within capitalism, Gutiérrez uses a more collective notion of freedom to ensure that spiritual identity can be experienced both in the temporal and in the transcendental conditions of being.  The world of Christian teachings can be applied to remedying social and economic injustices, as the liberation process is linked to the present tense.  When the Pope embraces a severely disfigured man, reaching out to the temporal reality of others, and Tweets, "Lord teach us to step outside ourselves... Teach us to go out into the streets... and Manifest your love," one can see Gutiérrez's notion of liberation and its construction of freedom realized in a new and transformative manner in the current Papal leadership.

Sources:

We’ve answered 318,944 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question