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Wayward Readings in Greek Theology
Author:
Inspired by a critical reconsideration of current monolithic approaches to the study of Greek religion, this book argues that ancient Greeks displayed a disquieting capacity to validate two (or more) dissonant, if not contradictory, representations of the divine world in a complementary rather than mutually exclusive manner. From this perspective the six chapters explore problems inherent in: order vs. variety/chaos in polytheism, arbitrariness vs. justice in theodicy, the peaceful co-existence of mono- and polytheistic theologies, human traits in divine imagery, divine omnipotence vs. limitation of power, and ruler cult. Based on an intimate knowledge of ancient realia and literary testimonia the book stands out for its extensive application of relevant perceptions drawn from cultural anthropology, theology, cognitive science, psychology, and linguistics.
Editor:
International studies in Hellenic and Roman theology.
In: Ästhetik des Opfers
Author:
This is the second of a two-volume collection of studies on inconsistencies in Greek and Roman religion. Their common aim is to argue for the historical relevance of various types of ambiguity and dissonance. While the first volume focused on the central paradoxes in ancient henotheism, the present one discusses the ambiguities in myth and ritual of transition and reversal.
After an introduction to the history of the myth and ritual debate (with a focus on New Year festivals and initiation) in the first chapter, the second and third chapters discuss myth and ritual of reversal—Kronos and the Kronia, and Saturnus and the Saturnalia respectively; the fourth treats two women's festivals—that of Bona Dea and the Thesmophoria; the fifth investigates the initiatory aspects of Apollo and Mars. In the background is the basic conviction that the three approaches to religion known as 'substantivistic', functionalist and cultural-symbolic respectively, need not be mutually exclusive.
Author:
This is the first of a two-volume collection of studies in inconsistencies in Greek and Roman religion. Their common aim is to argue for the historical relevance of various types of ambiguity and dissonance. The first volume focuses on the central paradoxes in ancient henotheism. The term 'henotheism' -- a modern formation after the stereotyped acclamation: #EIS O QEOS# ("one is the god"), common to early Christianity and contemporaneous paganism -- denotes the specific devotion to one particular god without denying the existence of, or even cultic attention to, other gods. After its prime in the twenties and thirties of this century the term fell into disuse. Nonetheless, the notion of henotheism represents one of the most remarkable and significant shifts in Graeco-Roman religion and hence deserves fresh reconsideration.
Aspects of Religious Mentality in the Ancient World
Editor:
International studies in Hellenic and Roman theology.
In: Inconsistencies in Greek and Roman Religion, Volume 1: Ter Unus. Isis, Dionysos, Hermes. Three Studies in Henotheism
In: Inconsistencies in Greek and Roman Religion, Volume 1: Ter Unus. Isis, Dionysos, Hermes. Three Studies in Henotheism