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Michael Bonner

of these events, namely, a struggle between a traditional, rather accommodating heathenism and a separatist, purist monotheism; and on the other hand, what the Qurʾan actually says. Hawting (1999) has presented detailed evidence for this split. Here, the Qurʾanic “unbelievers” ( kuffār , etc.) are

Jan N. Bremmer

present an exhaustive survey of early Lycaonian Christianity, based on both literary and, especially, non-literary sources. Its size, over 1000 pages, prevents me of course from a detailed discussion. Yet I will try to give an impression of this impressive book, which is unequalled in its thoroughness

Johanne Louise Christiansen

(1943), only a few studies exist on the Qurʾan’s metaphoricity. 25 The overall aim of the Qurʾan’s metaphorical language is didactic, and the text is presented as being aptly aware of this fact: 26 24 Have you s not seen how God has coined a comparison ( a-lam tara kayfa ḍaraba llāhu mathalan ): A

David Scott


The paper deals with the encounter and ensuing responses that can be traced between Buddhism and Islam, during their centuries of contact across Asia (Anatolia, Iran, Central Asia, India), and more recently in the West. Within this panorama of history certain immediate overtly negative images of the other can be perceived in both traditions, manifested in terms of actions and literature. However some more positive images seem to have crystallised in Islam, particularly and significantly within the mystical Sufi streams that emerged in the East Iranian and Central Asian lands. Such historical patterns of confrontation, convergence and mysticism lead into the more modern second part of the study. A geographical-political perspective is first used, as the variations in their relationship in the various countries of SE Asia, and the British situation are noted. This is followed by a review of potential approaches between Islam and Buddhism in the current inter-faith dialogue arena. Whilst some doctrinal areas may be reconcilable (according to Cleary), it is primarily in other areas that more promising avenues of approach may be discerned. One is the area of ethics and social action on issues of common concern, as suggested by figures like Badawi, Gilliat, Askari and Vajiragnana. Another one is in contemplational areas of mysticism, as acknowledged by figures like Idries Shah. In both areas this can be echoed in greater clarity in the Christian-Buddhist dialogue. A further implication may be to bring out the need to view religions in functionalist and transformational terms, rather than culture bound doctrinal norms.

Michael Stausberg Abstract Th e present article surveys some relevant developments of conceptualizations of hell in the R ̣ g-Veda, the Avestan corpus and the Middle Persian (Pahlavi) literature of the Zoroastrians, where hell is more extensively discussed. Th e article concludes by look- ing at the belief in heaven and

Franz Winter

Outline of the General Question: Beyond Mere “Eclecticism” It would raise few eyebrows to introduce Kōfuku-no-Kagaku as a Japanese religious movement whose founder claims to be the legitimate heir of the Buddha presenting the genuine interpretation of Buddhism for today’s world. This sounds

Joanna Tokarska-Bakir

WHY IS THE HOLY IMAGE “TRUE”? THE ONTOLOGICAL CONCEPT OF TRUTH AS A PRINCIPLE OF SELF-AUTHENTICATION OF FOLK DEVOTIONAL EFFIGIES IN THE 18 TH AND 19 TH CENTURY J OANNA T OKARSKA -B AKIR Summary The present article examines the twofold material provided by analyses of the borderline between the

Ilkka Pyysiäinen

BUDDHISM, RELIGION, AND THE CONCEPT OF “GOD” I LKKA P YYSIÄINEN Summary It is here argued that, although the Buddha and the buddhas are not regarded as gods by Buddhists, they clearly fulŽ ll the criteria of “counter-intuitiveagents” as they have been presented by Pascal Boyer. To the extent

Arvind Sharma

stand in need of revision in the light of the epigraphic, literary, and even artisitic evidence presented therein, specially when it is assessed in the context of the various foreign invasions to which India has been subject. The view that Hinduism as a religion, or the Hindus as a people, lack a sense