Previously I’ve charged David Bentley Hart with proffering a primarily protological ontology. But here he strikes a more resolute eschatological note:
“Both our being and our essence always exceed the moment of our existence, lying before us as gratuity and futurity, mediated to us only in the splendid eros and terror of our in fieri, because finite existence — far from being the dialectical labor of an original contradiction — is a pure gift, grounded in no original substance, wavering from nothinness into the openness of God’s self-outpouring infinity, persisting in a condition of absolute fragility and fortuity, impossible in itself, and so actual beyond itself. Becoming is an ecstasy, and nothing besides; it is indeed a constant tension — between what a thing is and what it is not, between its past and its future, between interior and exterior, and so on — but it is not originally a violent departure from the stability of an original essence. Our being is simply the rapture of arrival . . . creaturely becoming, in its original and ultimate truth, departs from no ground but simply hastens to an end . . .” (p. 244)
Here at least, Hart seems to posit a decidedly eschatological ontology in which our being is constituted by its apocalyptic orientation towards of God’s future. Good stuff.