Vulnerability and the Father of the Prodigal Son
Keenan / 27 Settembre 2019

  My recent interests have been to establish a fundamental ethics based on vulnerability. I believe that our vulnerability derives from the nature of God in whose image we are made; made in the image of the vulnerable God, vulnerability is our nature. I believe that vulnerability is what establishes us as creatures before God and one another. I believe that being vulnerable is where the moral life starts. Besides being influenced by Irish theologians, Enda McDonagh and Linda Hogan, I have been borrowing some insights from the philosopher Judith Butler who has herself borrowed from Emmanuel Levinas, among others. Butler roots all of ethics in vulnerability. For Butler vulnerability «is prior to any individual sense of self… and this is what it means to be the self I am, receptive to you in ways that I cannot fully predict or control». She writes: «You call upon me, and I answer. But if I answer, it was only because I was already answerable; that is, this susceptibility and vulnerability constitutes me at the most fundamental level and is there, we might say, prior to any deliberate decision to answer the call. In other words, one has to be already capable of…