Who is Maurice Blondel?June 26, 2021
French thinker. He took the subject as his starting point and struggled to close the gap between thought and existence with a philosophy of immanence or action that would not reduce existence to thought, and to solve the problem of what human destiny is.
Maurice Blondel (November 2, 1861, Dijon – June 4, 1949, Aix-en-Provence) was a French philosopher. Blondel developed a “philosophy of action” of thought with modern Pragmatism in the context of a Christian philosophy of integrated classical NeoPlatonic religion. He took the subject as his starting point and struggled to close the gap between thought and existence with a philosophy of immanence or action that would not reduce existence to thought, and to solve the problem of human destiny.
In 1881 he joined the Paris Ecole Normale Supérieure. In 1893 he finished his thesis “L’Action” (Action), an important essay for life and practical science. He became a professor at Lille in 1897.
His wife died in 1919. He retired in 1927 for health reasons. Between 1934 and 1937 he published a trilogy devoted to thought, action, and being. In 1935, another published composition of concrete and Integrale ontology “L’être et les êtres” (Trade and Being) and “L’esprit chrétien” (Christian Spirit) in 1946.
Blondel’s importance has largely been in the theological and philosophical Catholic circles of France, Germany, Spain, Italy and Quebec. Among many important writers in the 20th century, Blondel is responsible for the “new theology” that played such a large role in the deliberation and arguments of the Second Vatican Council.
L’Action – Essai d’une critique de la vie et d’une science de la pratique, PUF, 1950
(English) Action (1893): Essay on a Critique of Life and a Science of Practice (Notre Dame: University of Notre Dame Press, 1984).
L’être et les êtres – Essai d’ontologie concrète et intégrale, PUF, 1963
The letter on apologetics and History and dogma (edited and translated by Alexander Dru & Illtyd Trethowan, Harvill Press, 1964)