Date of Award


Document Type



Santa Clara : Santa Clara University, 2020.

Degree Name

Doctor of Sacred Theology (STD)


Gina Hens-Piazza


In Ezek 1-3; 8-11 and 40-48, Ezekiel saw the ("visions of God"). In these visions one observes that the presence of YHWH is experienced in three different spaces: in the temple, in exile and on the mountain east of the city. These manifestations of the divine presence in different spaces challenged the traditional priestly understanding of YHWH as exclusively "tabernacled" in the Jerusalem temple. Thus in this research, I investigate, not only where God is really found, but also the implication of the movements of the (glory of God) from the sacred space to the non sacred space and back to the sacred space.

While the community in Judah considered those in exile as "other" because they had no temple and were not within the geographical location called "Judah" (cf. Ezek 11:15); this study leans on the Critical Spatial Theories of Edward W. Soja and Wesley A. Kort to show that location does not guarantee the experience of the divine. What counts is not location, but praxis; that is, our orientation towards the Holy One.

Rereading YHWH's expression ( cf. Ezek 11: 16) in reaction to the tension that existed between the exilic community and the remnant community in Judah challenges the religious tension and religious exclusivism that characterize our world today. It shows that despite the existential peculiarities of each community of faith, there exists a theological minimum that can fonn the basis of our experience of the divine. Sometimes we may think we possess the fullness of truth as symbolized in the temple with its sacred adornments or as contained in the Torah, the Holy Bible or the Koran. But the reality of the experience of the divine does not necessarily lie in the one who possesses the truth. It is not the possession of the truth that matters, it is how prepared we are to walk in the light of the truth that we possess.

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