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Document Details :
Title: The Return of the Holy Spirit to the Father
Subtitle: A Puzzle for Trinitarian Theology
Author(s): LOMBARDO, Nicholas E.
Journal: Louvain Studies
Volume: 44 Issue: 2 Date: 2021
Many theologians have claimed that, within the Trinity, the Holy Spirit proceeds from Father to Son, and then back to the Father. This idea raises some challenging questions. If the Holy Spirit returns to the Father, does the Father receive the Spirit? And if the Father receives the Spirit, how could the Father remain the principle without principle, and the font and origin of all divinity, as held by the ancient traditions of both East and West? This article discusses these questions and proposes some answers. By appealing to the medieval Trinitarian principle that the divine persons are in reality the same as their respective personal acts, it argues that the idea of the Holy Spirit returning to the Father, or the Father receiving the Holy Spirit, need not imply that the Father receives any aspect of his identity from either the Son or the Spirit.