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What holds a society together, what makes it dissolve, and how is a society in crisis restored? These are the questions explored in this study, which brings the Serek ha-Yahad (IQS) into dialogue with mimetic theory. It thus aims to shed light on the forms of life and thought in the yahad, as well as on their underlying reason and purpose.
From the analysis emerges an image of a community that not only has a strong awareness of the mechanisms of violence, but also of its cure. Its hierarchical organization and strict regulations are motivated by a perceived dissolution of contemporary society. By subordinating personal desire to community discipline and by establishing a system of differentiation, the yahad seeks to provide a model of how a society ought to be functioning.
Restauration, Sacrifice, et Naissance prophétique dans la Sīra d’Ibn Isḥāq
This book aims to demonstrate that the accounts that feature Muhammad's grandfather in Ibn Ishaq's Sīra are the product of narrative engineering. Through a narrative sequence, in which Abd al-Muttalib is the hero, several intriguing episodes follow one another in a causal manner and lead to the birth of a future prophet. Articulated with a historical anthropology, the narrative analysis reveals that the Sīra is the heir to the royal literature of the Ancient Near East. Using motifs and themes from the culture of the Fertile Crescent, the Sīra makes 'Abd al-Muttalib a royal figure in the service of legitimising the Abbasid dynasty, heir par excellence to Ishmael and restorer of the Abrahamic covenant.

Cet ouvrage entend démontrer que les récits qui mettent en scène le grand-père de Muhammad dans la Sīra d'Ibn Ishaq sont le produit d'une ingénierie narrative. À travers une séquence narrative, dont Abd al-Muttalib est le héros, plusieurs épisodes intriguant s'enchainent d'une manière causale et aboutissent à la naissance d'un futur prophète. Articulée à une anthropologie historique, l'analyse narrative révèle que la Sīra est l'héritière de la littérature royale du Proche Orient Ancien. À partir de motifs et de thématiques issues de la culture du croissant fertile, la Sīra fait de 'Abd al-Muttalib une figure royale au service de la légitimation de la dynastie abbasside, héritier par excellence d'Ismaël et restaurateur de l'alliance abrahamique.
An Inquiry into the Textual Transmission of Porphyry’s Philosophy according to the Chaldean Oracles
This book gives us a new perspective on the Philosophy according to the Chaldean Oracles by Porphyry of Tyre (ca. 232/305 CE), demonstrating that much of what we thought we knew about this work and its fragments is mistaken. Here, for the first time, the attempt is made at reconstructing the original text by following the vicissitudes of its reception and transmission from Late Antiquity through the Middle Ages and the Renaissance up to modern scholarship.
The extensive and painstaking study of the surviving fragments leads to the radically innovative conclusion that this encyclopedic treatise, written by Porphyry in the last decades of the 3rd century CE, consisted of fifteen books organized in various sections. After an initial discussion of the nature of theurgy and of its subordinate role with respect to philosophy, Porphyry describes the entire history of Greek philosophy from Homer up to his own teacher Plotinus, to then go on to present “introductions” to the seven encyclical disciplines whose study is required for the comprehension of theosophy, that is, the esoteric speculation on the three parts of philosophy: anthropology-ethics, physics, and metaphysics-theology.
By harmonizing the teachings of Plato, Aristotle, Plotinus, and the Chaldean Oracles, Porphyry intends to present the complete and definitive philosophic system, with the aim of showing the universal way for the liberation of the souls of initiates and of contextually fighting the final battle of the Greco-Roman civilization against Christianity.
Volume Editors: and
Formerly Études Préliminaires aux Religions Orientales dans l'Empire Romain, the series Religions in the Graeco-Roman World is a forum for studies in the social and cultural function of religions in the Greek and the Roman world, dealing with the religions of city and region between ca. 400 BCE and 700 CE, both on their own terms and in their interaction with early Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. Special attention is given to the religious history of regions and cities which illustrate the practical workings of these processes.

The series published an average of three volumes per year over the last five years.
Volume Editors: and
This book explores how introductory methods shaped school practice and intellectual activity in various fields of thought of the Early Imperial Age and Late Antiquity. The isagogical crossroads—the intersection of philosophical, philological, religious and scientific introductory methods—embody a fascinating narrative of the methods regulating ancient readers' approach to authoritative texts and disciplines. The strongly innovative character of this book consists exactly in the attempt to explore isagogical issues in a wide-ranging and comprehensive perspective—from philosophy to religion, from medicine to exact sciences—with the aim of detecting connections, reciprocal influences, and interactions shaping the intellectual environment of the Early Imperial Age and Late Antiquity.
This volume, the thirty-fifth year of published proceedings, contains five papers and commentaries presented to the Boston Area Colloquium in Ancient Philosophy during the academic year 2018-19. Paper topics include: evidence for Simplicius as author of the Commentary on the De Anima; Aristotle and Humean theory of motivation, ‘besires’ and desires; moderation in NE 3,10-12 as novel in Aristotle, differing greatly from his contemporaries, especially Plato’s Charmides; Platonic memory and oblivion, mythic sources and cultural influence; Aristotle’s final causality in recovering nature from inanimate mechanism. The commentators take up the themes of these papers, in some instances developing and building on the main argument, while in others offering direct challenges to the principal author’s thesis.
Providence, Dualism, and Will in Later Greek and Early Christian Philosophy
Is God involved? Why do bad things happen to good people? What is up to us? These questions were explored in Mediterranean antiquity with reference to ‘providence’ (pronoia). In Did God Care? Dylan Burns offers the first comprehensive survey of providence in ancient philosophy that brings together the most important Greek, Latin, Coptic, and Syriac sources, from Plato to Plotinus and the Gnostics.

Burns demonstrates how the philosophical problems encompassed by providence transformed in the first centuries CE, yielding influential notions about divine care, evil, creation, omniscience, fate, and free will that remain with us today. These transformations were not independent developments of ‘Pagan philosophy’ and ‘Christian theology,’ but include fruits of mutually influential engagement between Hellenic and Christian philosophers.
Terror and Intrigue
In Gnostic Countercultures, fourteen scholars investigate countercultural aspects associated with the gnostic which is broadly conceived with reference to the claim to have special knowledge of the divine, which either transcends or transgresses conventional religious knowledge. The papers explore the concept of the gnostic in Western culture from the ancient world to the modern New Age. Contributors trace the emergence, persistence, and disappearance of gnostic religious currents that are perceived to be countercultural, inverted, transgressive and/or subversive in their relationship to conventional religions and their claims to knowledge. The essays represent a selection of the papers delivered at the international congress Gnostic Countercultures: Terror and Intrigue convened at Rice University, March 26-28, 2015. The essays were originally published in Gnosis 1.1-2 (2016) and are available for the first time under separate cover.
Studies in Hermias’ Commentary on Plato’s Phaedrus is a collection of twelve essays that consider aspects of Hermias’ philosophy, including his notions of the soul, logic, and method of exegesis. The essays also consider Hermias’ work in the tradition of Neoplatonism, particularly in relation to the thought of Iamblichus and Proclus. The collection grapples with the question of the originality of Hermias’ commentary—the only extant work of Hermias—which is a series of lectures notes of his teacher, Syrianus.
This volume, the thirty-fourth year of published proceedings, contains five papers and commentaries presented to the Boston Area Colloquium in Ancient Philosophy during academic year 2017-18. Paper topics include: the nature of unity in the Parmenides; the role of generation in understanding the priority of activity in Aristotle’s Metaphysics; the relation of language and craft in Plato’s critique of sophistry; the ambiguous place of pity for one’s slave in the Epicurean sage’s hedonistic egoism; using the distinction of praising and prizing as pointing toward the higher status of happiness to virtue in NE X.6-8. The commentators do their work in challenging some of these claims and supporting others.

Contributors are Kelly Arenson, Daniel Gardner, David Horan, Colin King, Max Latona, D.C. Schindler, Mark Sentesy, Daniel Shartin, Susan Stark and Jan Szaif.