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Power, Politics and the Cults of Isis

Proceedings of the Vth International Conference of Isis Studies, Boulogne-sur-Mer, October 13-15, 2011

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Edited by Laurent Bricault and Miguel John Versluys

In the Hellenistic and Roman world intimate relations existed between those holding power and the cults of Isis. This book is the first to chart these various appropriations over time within a comparative perspective. Ten carefully selected case studies show that “the Egyptian gods” were no exotic outsiders to the Hellenistic and Roman Mediterranean, but constituted a well institutionalised and frequently used religious option. Ranging from the early Ptolemies and Seleucids to late Antiquity, the case studies illustrate how much symbolic meaning was made with the cults of Isis by kings, emperors, cities and elites. Three articles introduce the theme of Isis and the longue durée theoretically, simultaneously exploring a new approach towards concepts like ruler cult and Religionspolitik.

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Michael Segal

worldview, the events of the past, present, and future are mutually illuminating. On the one hand, the events of the present and future may be imagined according to the terms of events that have already taken place; that is, past events may be construed as historical antecedents which determine the content

Steve Mason

from the holy books and ancient prophets. 3 It also seems telling that he consistently distinguishes prophets from seers (µάντεις; cf. Ant. 6.327), in a way that non-Judaean authors do not. 4 For him, the latter are present among all peoples in all times. 5 He is something of a µάντις himself

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Carol A. Newsom

assumptions that are present in these same documents. A variety of suggestions have been made, mostly to the effect that the sectarians were inconsistent or not fully systematic in their beliefs. 2 This may indeed be the case, though Jonathan Klawans argues that, properly understood, all deterministic

John J. Collins

with cheap copies of translations of the most important of these documents for student use.” 4 Out of this breakfast meeting developed the Pseudepigrapha Group, which has continued to function within the SBL , with some mutations, down to the present. There also emerged a series of “Texts and

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Matthew S. Goldstone

elements that challenge rebuke and Lev. 19:17, Tanḥuma introduces several alternative sources culled from across the Bavli that strongly endorse the practice of reproof. This renewed valuation of rebuke aligns with a preference for other-oriented responsibility, a theme subtly present in the passage

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Matthew S. Goldstone

between rebuke and love. The present chapter highlights two divergent approaches to this task, one emerging from the DSS and the other appearing in the Gospels. While love serves as a common reason for both the DSS and the Gospels to reject rebuke targeted toward those outside of one’s community, the

Françoise Mirguet

, for example, is presented, in different traditions, as the impulse that led the serpent to deceive the first humans; conversely, Josephus, in his Antiquities , indicates that Abraham entreated God in favor of the Sodomites out of the grief he felt for them. 64 Since emotions directly shape actions

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Matthew S. Goldstone

phenomenon relevant for the present work. Within the Greco-Roman and early Christian world the practice of parrhesia appears in a few different areas of discourse. One major arena is the political sphere. 78 As a political act, parrhesia is about speaking the truth to the general public or to a monarch

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Matthew S. Goldstone

Christian humility and sense of sin.” 6 Spelling out the nature of this incompatibility and the corresponding 4th century Christian view of parrhesia he writes, Christian humility, then, disrupts the classical ideal of friendship based on a consciousness of virtue. Christians writing in this vein present