“Before the causa sui, man can neither fall to his knees in awe nor can he play music and dance before this God.” ~ Martin Heidegger, Identity and Difference
Martin Heidegger rejected the God of the theologians, the one whose sheer Deity explains all that exists, especially as the Creator. Why Heidegger rejected the God of theology is too complex to explore here. But we will simply question his statement that humanity, in the presence of the infinite God, can’t dance. In front of a God who causes all things, it makes little sense to sing or pray either.
Can one dance in front of a God who is uncaused, both in reference to his existence and his acts? What sense does it make to dance in the presence of his immutability, his sheer unchangingness (Mal 3:6)? Though we might be reading Heidegger inaccurately, we still want to answer this question.
That God is immutable ensures that we can dance in his presence. Human beings, filled with all manner of shame and regret, could never be completely vulnerable in front of a changing God, before a God whose disposition could be caused from outside. The steadfast character of God, his zeal to love us in all our shame: these ensure that we will dance “naked without shame” (Gen 2:25). Because we see only “through a dim mirror” (1 Cor 13:12), none of us, at this point, can dance in front of God without shame. Fearful as we are, these mortal bodies preclude us from escaping our shame in totality. Yet when we see him for who he is, beholding unbridled love, nothing at that point will prevent our dancing.