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In this chapter the book’s primary theme—the structural similarity between the experience of coming into the presence of God and the experience of coming into the presence of persons—is introduced, as is the secondary theme of the structural similarity between the “death of God,” a felt loss of the reality of God and his presence, and the “death of persons,” a loss of the sense of the inherent worth of persons and their presence. A main focus of this book is on persons, and this suggests an alignment with the philosophical school of personalism. However, as this chapter makes clear, the approach of this book is significantly different from personalism in its various forms. This introductory chapter concludes with a description of the subjects and concerns of the thirteen chapters that follow.