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No one mentions Syriac, – a dialect of the Aramaic language Jesus spoke –, without referring to Sebastian P. Brock, the Oxford scholar and teacher who has written and taught about everything Syriac, even reorienting the field as The Third Lung of early Christianity (along with Greek and Latin). In 2018, Syriac scholars world-wide gathered in Sigtuna, Sweden, to celebrate with Sebastian his accomplishments and share new directions. Through essays showing what Syriac studies have attained, where they are going, as well as some arenas and connections previously not imagined, flavours of the fruits of labouring in the field are offered.

Contributors to this volume are: Susan Ashbrook Harvey, Shraga Bick, Briouria Bitton-Ashkelony, Alberto Camplani, Thomas A. Carlson, Jeff W. Childers, Muriel Debié, Terry Falla, George A. Kiraz, Sergey Minov, Craig E. Morrison, István Perczel, Anton Pritula, Ilaria Ramelli, Christine Shepardson, Stephen J. Shoemaker, Herman G.B. Teule, Kathleen E. McVey.
Author:
Tianyi Zhang offers in this study an innovative philosophical reconstruction of Shihāb al-Dīn al-Suhrawardī’s (d. 1191) Illuminationism. Commonly portrayed as either a theosophist or an Avicennian in disguise, Suhrawardī appears here as an original and hardheaded philosopher who adopts mysticism as a tool for philosophical investigation.
Zhang makes use of Plato’s cave allegory to explain Suhrawardī’s Illuminationist project. Focusing on three areas—the theory of presential knowledge, the ontological discussion of mental considerations, and Light Metaphysics—Zhang convincingly reveals the Nominalist and Existential nature of Illuminationism and thereby proposes a new way of understanding how Suhrawardī’s central philosophical ideas cohere.
In A Christian-Muslim Comparative Theology of Saints: The Community of God’s Friends, Hans A. Harmakaputra focuses on a question that emerges from today’s multi-faith context: “Is it possible for Christians to recognize non-Christians as saints?” To answer affirmatively, he offers a Christian perspective on an inclusive theology of saints through the lens of comparative theology that is based on the thought of Catholic, Protestant, and Muslim theologians: Karl Rahner, Jean-Luc Marion, Elizabeth Johnson, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Paul Tillich, and Ibn Arabī’. As a result of this interreligious comparison, three theological constructs emerge: (1) saints as manifestations and revealers of God’s self-communication, (2) the hiddenness of saints, and (3) saints as companions.
These theological constructs redefine and reconfigure Christian understanding of saints on one hand, and on the other hand provide theological reasoning to include non-Christians in the Christian notion of the communion of saints.
Volume Editor:
A Companion to Comparative Theology offers a unique survey of a rapidly developing field of modern theology in 32 chapters coordinated by five editors. Its first part discusses some of the main historical developments in theology and religious studies before 1985 that are relevant for understanding contemporary approaches in comparative theology. The main part of the companion traces developments in five specific areas of comparative research, starting with classical approaches by Christian comparative theologians, and continuing with responses by scholars from Jewish, Islamic, Hindu, Buddhist and Chinese religious comparative perspectives. The final part of the companion highlights a number of new avenues in comparative theology, discussing new methods, new forms of awareness, new partnerships with other fields of study, and finally some preliminary conclusions.

Contributors are: Nadeen Mustafa A Alsulaimi, María Enid Barga, Bede Benjamin Bidlack, André van der Braak, Francis X. Clooney, Catherine Cornille, Jonathan Edelmann, Marianne Farina, James L. Fredericks, Rouyan Gu, Paul Hedges, Holly Hilgardner, Daniel Joslyn-Siemiatkoski, Louis Komjathy, Christian S. Krokus, LAI, Pan-chiu, Kristin Johnston Largen, John Makransky, Jerry L. Martin, Vahid Mahdavi Mehr, Marianne Moyaert, Emmanuel Nathan, Robert Cummings Neville, Hugh Nicholson, Jerusha Tanner Rhodes, Devorah Schoenfeld, Klaus von Stosch, Axel Marc Oaks Takacs, Pim Valkenberg, Maureen L. Walsh, Kijin James Wu
Mit einer kritischen Edition des Kitāb al-Kifāya fī l-hidāya fī uṣūl ad-dīn des Aḥmad b. Maḥmūd b. Abī Bakr Nūr ad-Dīn aṣ-Ṣābūnī al-Ḥanafī al-Buḫārī (gest. 580/1184)
Nūr al-Dīn al-Ṣābūnī was a prominent jurist and theologian in Samarqand in the late 6th/12th century. His theological works are in the tradition of the Ḥanafite-Māturīdite current of Sunni kalām. In addition, al-Ṣābūnī’s argumentation reflects the increasing engagement of Māturīdite mutakallimūn with their wide intellectual-historical environment. His discussions with the famous scholar Faḫr al-Dīn al-Rāzī are attested.
In the present volume, Angelika Brodersen uses a text-critical edition of al-Ṣābūnī’s comprehensive theological work, the Kitāb al-Kifāya fī l-hidāya fī uṣūl al-dīn, to analyze, based on selected thematic examples, how both elements of Māturīdite theological tradition and transformation processes occur in al-Ṣābūnī’s work, which contributed to the consolidation of the Māturīdiyya as a Sunni school of thought.

Nūr ad-Dīn aṣ-Ṣābūnī war ein prominenter Jurist und Theologe im Samarkand des ausgehenden 6./12. Jahrhunderts. Seine theologischen Werke stehen einerseits in der Tradition der ḥanafitisch-māturīditischen Strömung des sunnitischen kalāms. Auf der anderen Seite spiegelt aṣ-Ṣābūnīs Argumentation die zunehmende Auseinandersetzung der māturīditischen mutakallimūn mit ihrem allgemeinen geistesgeschichtlichen Umfeld wider. Bezeugt sind seine Diskussionen mit dem berühmten Gelehrten Faḫr ad-Dīn ar-Rāzī.
Im vorliegenden Band untersucht Angelika Brodersen auf der Grundlage einer textkritischen Edition von aṣ-Ṣābūnīs theologischem Hauptwerk, dem Kitāb al-Kifāya fī l-hidāya fī uṣūl ad-dīn, anhand ausgewählter Themenbeispiele, wie sich im Werk aṣ-Ṣābūnīs sowohl Elemente māturīditischer theologischer Tradition als auch Transformationsprozesse verfolgen lassen, die zur Konsolidierung der Māturīdiyya als sunnitische Schulrichtung beigetragen haben.
This volume contains twenty-three texts, most of which were written between the end of the 2nd/8th century and the end of the 3rd/9th century. The majority of them reflect the early stages of the development of the First Ibadi Imamate in 132/750 – established when the Omanis fully seceded from the central state in Baghdad until the Imamate was collapsed by the Abbasids in 280/893. The source value of these Ibadi texts for researchers and scholars specialised in Islamic studies far outweighs any importance they might attach to sectarian history per se.
Political Theologies in Polarized Times
Volume Editors: and
Populism is a buzzword. This compilation explores the significance of religion for the controversies stirred up by populist politics in European and American contexts in order to understand what lies behind the buzz. Engaging Jewish, Christian, and Islamic political thought and theology, contributions by more than twenty established and emerging scholars explore right-wing and left-wing protests, offering critical interpretations and creative interventions for a polarized public square. Both methodologically and thematically, the compilation moves beyond essentialist definitions of religion, encouraging a comparative approach to political theology today.

Ulrich Schmiedel and Joshua Ralston discuss their book on Brill's Humanities Matter podcast available on Spotify, Apple Podcasts and Google Podcasts.
Al-Fazārī’s writings are a unique source of information about Ibadi teachings on ʿilm al-kalām and the early development of this branch of religious knowledge. It is for this reason that scholars of Islamic theology are particularly interested in early Ibadi theology. In this volume newly discovered, re-edited texts by al-Fazārī are presented, with previously lacking fragments included, texts that had already begun to offer new perspectives on Islamic ʿilm al-kalām, and on its origins and the sources of its concepts and debating techniques. In their revised state these Ibadi texts represent a major contribution to scholastic theology. They demonstrate how their respective theological debates already took place at the beginning of the second/eighth century and how associated ideas, as well as related sects and treatises, remained current for some time afterwards, thereby contradicting earlier claims that these debates started in the third/ninth century.
Volume Editor:
Apocryphal traditions, often shared by Jews and Christians, have played a significant role in the history of both religions. The 26 essays in this volume examine regional and linguistic developments in Ethiopia, Egypt, Syria, Armenia, the Balkans, and Italy. Dissenting groups, such as the Samaritans, followers of John the Baptist, and mediæval dualists are also discussed. Furthermore, the book looks at interactions of Judaism and Christianity with the religions of Iran.
Seldom verified or authorized, and frequently rejected by Churches, apocryphal texts had their own process of development, undergoing significant transformations. The book shows how apocryphal accounts could become a medium of literary and artistic elaboration and mythological creativity. Local adaptations of Biblical stories indicate that copyists, authors and artists conceived of themselves as living not in a post-Biblical era, but in direct continuity with Biblical personages.
In A Comparative History of Catholic and Aš‘arī Theologies of Truth and Salvation Mohammed Gamal Abdelnour analytically and critically compares the historical development of the Catholic theologies of truth and salvation with those of its Islamic counterpart, Ašʿarism. The monograph moves the discussion from individual theologians to theological schools with a view to helping consolidate the young field of Comparative Theology. It serves two types of readers. First, the specialist who wants to dig deeper into the two traditions parallelly. Second, the generalist who may not have the time to become thoroughly familiar with every aspect of Christian-Muslim theologies. Both readers will come out with a holistic understanding of the development of Christian and Muslim theologies of truth and salvation; a holistic understanding that increases the appetite of the former and quenches that of the latter. Despite the holistic nature of the monograph, attention is duly paid to the specificities of each tradition in a deep and profound manner.