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The Religious Worldviews Reflected in the Dead Sea Scrolls

Proceedings of the Fourteenth International Symposium of the Orion Center for the Study of the Dead Sea Scrolls and Associated Literature, 28–30 May, 2013

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Edited by Ruth A. Clements, Menahem Kister and Michael Segal

The Dead Sea Scrolls offer a window onto the rich theological landscape of Judaism in the Second Temple period. Through careful textual analysis, the authors of these twelve studies explore such topics as dualism and determinism, esoteric knowledge, eschatology and covenant, the nature of heaven and / or the divine, moral agency, and more; as well as connections between concepts expressed in the Qumran corpus and in later Jewish and Christian literature. The religious worldviews reflected in the Scrolls constitute part of the ideological environment of Second Temple Judaism; the analysis of these texts is essential for the reconstruction of that milieu. Taken together, these studies indicate the breadth and depth of theological reflection in the Second Temple period.

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Matthew S. Goldstone

In The Dangerous Duty of Rebuke Matthew Goldstone explores the ways in which religious leaders within early Jewish and Christian communities conceived of the obligation to rebuke their fellows based upon the biblical verse: “Rebuke your fellow but do not incur sin” (Leviticus 19:17). Analyzing texts from the Bible through the Talmud and late Midrashim as well as early Christian monastic writings, he exposes a shift from asking how to rebuke in the Second Temple and early Christian period, to whether one can rebuke in early rabbinic texts, to whether one should rebuke in later rabbinic and monastic sources. Mapping these observations onto shifting sociological concerns, this work offers a new perspective on the nature of interpersonal responsibility in antiquity.

Talmudic Transgressions

Engaging the Work of Daniel Boyarin

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Edited by Charlotte Fonrobert, Ishay Rosen-Zvi, Aharon Shemesh and Moulie Vidas

Talmudic Transgressions is a collection of essays on rabbinic literature and related fields in response to the boundary-pushing scholarship of Daniel Boyarin. This work is an attempt to transgress boundaries in various ways, since boundaries differentiate social identities, literary genres, legal practices, or diasporas and homelands. These essays locate the transgressive not outside the classical traditions but in these traditions themselves, having learned from Boyarin that it is often within the tradition and in its terms that we can find challenges to accepted notions of knowledge, text, and ethnic or gender identity. The sections of this volume attempt to mirror this diverse set of topics.


Contributors include Julia Watts Belser, Jonathan Boyarin, Shamma Boyarin, Virginia Burrus, Sergey Dolgopolski, Charlotte E. Fonrobert, Simon Goldhill, Erich S. Gruen, Galit Hasan-Rokem, Christine Hayes, Adi Ophir, James Redfield, Elchanan Reiner, Ishay Rosen-Zvi, Lena Salaymeh, Zvi Septimus, Aharon Shemesh, Dina Stein, Eliyahu Stern, Moulie Vidas, Barry Scott Wimpfheimer, Elliot R. Wolfson, Azzan Yadin-Israel, Israel Yuval, and Froma Zeitlin.

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Edited by William V. Harris

The history of healthcare in the classical world suffers from notable neglect in one crucial area. While scholars have intensively studied both the rationalistic medicine that is conveyed in the canonical texts and also the ‘temple medicine’ of Asclepius and other gods, they have largely neglected to study popular medicine in a systematic fashion. This volume, which for the most part is the fruit of a conference held at Columbia University in 2014, aims to help correct this imbalance. Using the full range of available evidence - archaeological, epigraphical and papyrological, as well as the literary texts - the international cast of contributors hopes to show what real people in Antiquity actually did when they tried to avert illness or cure it.

The Qurʾānic Pagans and Related Matters

Collected Studies in Three Volumes, Volume 1

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Patricia Crone

Edited by Hanna Siurua

Patricia Crone's Collected Studies in Three Volumes brings together a number of her published, unpublished, and revised writings on Near Eastern and Islamic history, arranged around three distinct but interconnected themes. Volume 1, The Qurʾānic Pagans and Related Matters, pursues the reconstruction of the religious environment in which Islam arose and develops an intertextual approach to studying the Qurʾānic religious milieu. Volume 2, The Iranian Reception of Islam: The Non-Traditionalist Strands, examines the reception of pre-Islamic legacies in Islam, above all that of the Iranians. Volume 3, Islam, the Ancient Near East and Varieties of Godlessness, places the rise of Islam in the context of the ancient Near East and investigates sceptical and subversive ideas in the Islamic world.

The Iranian Reception of Islam: The Non-Traditionalist Strands
Islam, the Ancient Near East and Varieties of Godlessness

Exercices d'histoire des religions

Comparaison, rites, mythes et émotions

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Philippe Borgeaud

Edited by Daniel Barbu and Philippe Matthey

Exercices d’histoire des religions is a collection of the most important articles published by Philippe Borgeaud during his career as the professor of history of religions at the University of Geneva (Switzerland). These nineteen studies showcase the many reflections of the Swiss scholar of religion on the categories and tools used to describe and compare such evanescent concepts as “religions”, “myths” and “rituals”, and his methodology for a critical and comparative study of ancient and modern religions. Through them, readers will gain a clear understanding of the importance such an approach can wield in the contemporary discussions and dissents about religions.

Exercices d’histoire des religions rassemble les articles les plus importants publiés par Philippe Borgeaud durant sa carrière en tant que professeur d’histoire des religions à l’Université de Genève. Ces dix-neuf enquêtes illustrent les réflexions du savant suisse sur les outils et catégories utilisés par l’historien des religions pour décrire et comparer des concepts aussi évanescents que les « religions », les « mythes » ou les « rituels », et sur le rôle joué par les émotions dans leur élaboration.
À travers eux, le lecteur est amené à découvrir la méthode développée par Philippe Borgeaud pour étudier de manière critique et comparative les religions antiques et modernes, une approche sans doute fondamentale pour mieux saisir les discussions et controverses contemporaines sur ce sujet.

Linguistic Manifestations in the Trimorphic Protennoia and the Thunder: Perfect Mind

Analysed against the Background of Platonic and Stoic Dialectics

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Tilde Bak Halvgaard

Both the Thunder: Perfect Mind (NHC VI,2) and the Trimorphic Protennoia (NHC XIII,1) present their readers with goddesses who descend in such auditive terms as sound, voice, and word. In Linguistic Manifestations in the Trimorphic Protennoia and the Thunder: Perfect Mind, Tilde Bak Halvgaard argues that these presentations reflect a philosophical discussion about the nature of words and names, utterances and language, as well as the relationship between language and reality, inspired especially by Platonic and Stoic dialectics.
Her analysis of these linguistic manifestations against the background of ancient philosophy of language offers many new insights into the structure of the two texts and the paradoxical sayings of the Thunder: Perfect Mind.

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Edited by David Vincent Meconi S.J.

Twelve leading scholars have collaborated on this unique volume, bringing their biblical and patristic expertise together to show how the first followers of Jesus used their own canonical scriptures to address concerns central to life in the Roman Empire. Sacred Scripture and Secular Struggles offers an overview of how early Christians approached and appropriated biblical texts in addressing wider societal issues of imperial power, slavery, the use of wealth, suicide and other fundamental issues brought about by the convergence of empire and ecclesia.

Attis

Between Myth and History: King, Priest and God

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Maria Lancellotti

This volume deals with the figure of Attis. The work aims to reconsider the mythical and cultic information about this character, trying to provide proof of the processes of "construction" and "reconstruction" that have contributed to the moulding of the different forms of Attis that developed as a result of various demands within different religious traditions. After an introduction about the history of the studies, the first part examines the oldest evidence on Attis, resorting to comparison with religious traditions earlier than or contemporary with Phrygian culture. The second part tackles the classical world and collects the elements of continuity and of innovation in respect of Asianic religious traditions. The third part analyses the problem of the processes of reinterpretation of the traditional cults that both the "pagan" philosophers and the fathers of the Church effected. The link between Attis and Death is discussed in the fourth part.

The Books of Jeu and the Pistis Sophia as Handbooks to Eternity

Exploring the Gnostic Mysteries of the Ineffable

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Erin Evans

Despite the surge of interest in Gnostic texts following the discovery of the Nag Hammadi library, the Coptic Books of Jeu and Pistis Sophia remain understudied. Often dismissed as convoluted, confused, and repetitious, Erin Evans convincingly shows that these texts represent the writings of a distinct religious group with a consistent system of theology, cosmology, and ritual practice. This book offers an in-depth examination of these texts, their relationship to other contemporary Gnostic ideas, and their use in the context of a practicing religious group. Three thematic sections demonstrate how the collection of texts functions as a whole, covering baptisms and mystical ascent procedures, guides to moral living, and introductory texts and myths.