Love Between Embodiment and Spirituality: Jean-Luc Marion and John Paul II on Erotic Love



While theological discourse on love traditionally bifurcates between love as a body-bound passion and its superior and disembodied spiritual counterpart, a growing number of accounts have recently challenged the traditional division arguing for the fundamental unity of the phenomenon of love. Could such a dichotomy be overcome if one reversed the conventional hierarchy between bodily erotic and intellectual agapeic love and made erotic love between man and woman the fundamental paradigm of all kinds of loves? Could the reversal recuperate the affective aspect that has traditionally been downplayed? An answer to these questions is explored through an imaginary dialogue between Jean-Luc Marion's phenomenology of one-way erotic love and John Paul II's theology of embodied love.