From Temporality to Eternity: Three Philosophical Approaches

Document Type: Research Paper


University of Bari “Aldo Moro” F.L.E.S.S. Department, Italy


This article studies the problem of eternal life from a philosophical perspective. It focuses on the approaches of Bergson, Husserl, and Heidegger from contemporary philosophy, and shows that using these three philosophical approaches can better explain certain aspects of revealed theology, such as resurrection of flesh, eternity in a transcendent dimension, and eternal life as the angels in heaven. In this way, a point of interaction between philosophy and theology is highlighted.


Aquinas, T. 2008. Truth. Translated by R. W. Mulligan. Eugene, Oregon: Wipf and Stock Publishers.

Bergson, H. 2001. Time and Free Will: An Essay on the Immediate Data of Consciousness (1888). Translated by F. L. Pogson. New York: Dover Publications.

———. 2004. Matter and Memory (1896). Translated by N. M. Paul and W. Scott Palmer. New York: Dover Publications.

———. 2007. The creative mind. An introduction to Metaphysics (1934). Translated by M. L. Andison. New York: Dover Publications.

Carpin A. 2004. Angeli e demòni nella sintesi patristica d Isidoro di Siviglia. Bologna: Edizioni Studio Domenicano.

Craig, W. L. 2001. Time and Eternity: Exploring God’s Relationship to Time. Wheaton, Illinois: Crossway.

Findlay, J. N. 1978. “Time and Eternity.” The Review of Metaphysics 32: 3–14.

Harris, J. F. 1987. “An Empirical Understanding of Eternality.” International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 22 (3): 185-189.

Heidegger, M. 2008. Being and Time (1927). Translated by J. Macquarrie and E. Robinson. Malaysia: Blackwell Publishing.

Helm, P. 1998. Eternal God. Oxford: Clarendon.

Husserl, E. 1991. On the Phenomenology of Inner Time Consciousness (1928). Translated by J. Barnett Brough. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers.

Kant, I. 2000. Critique of Pure Reason (1781). Translated by J.M.D. Meiklejohn. London: The Guernsay Press.

Melamed, Y. Forthcoming. “Eternity in Early Modern Philosophy.” In Eternity: A History, edited by Y. Melamed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Padgett, A. G. 1992. God, Eternity, and the Nature of Time. New York: St. Martin’s.

Porro, P., ed. 2001. The Medieval Concept of Time. Studies on the Scholastic Debate and its Reception in Early Modern Philosophy, Leuven: Brill.

Ramige, E. A. 1935. Contemporary Concepts of Time and the Idea of God. Boston: Stratford.

Sandowsky, L. N. 2006. “Hume and Husserl: The Problem of the Continuity or Temporalization of Consciousness.” International Philosophical Quarterly 46 (1): 59-74.