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Forum Philosophicum

Volume 25, Issue 1, Spring 2020

Philosophical Turn Towards Religion

Tyrone Grima
Pages 37-52

To Personalise or not to Personalise
Simone Weil’s Struggle in her Understanding of God

This paper focuses on the theology of the philosopher Simone Weil, analysing the inherent struggle between the notion of the impersonal and the personal God, strongly present in her writings. The first part of the paper focuses on Weil’s point de départ, in which she maintained that the relationship between humanity and God should not be a personal one. This premise is rooted in Weil’s apophatic spirituality. It proceeds by giving an analysis of the dynamics in the notion of the impersonal God, juxtaposing it against the mystical experiences of Simone Weil herself. Weil’s spiritual journey led her to integrating the two polarities. The second part of the paper focuses on an integrative model that can be derived from Weil’s writings through her “spirituality of contradiction.” In the face of the struggle, Weil believed in the importance of staying in the uncomfortable space of the unknown, without rejecting either polarity. The paper concludes by demonstrating the relevance of this integrative model to contemporary society as a vehicle of integrity in the path towards wholeness.

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