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The Problem of Disenchantment

Scientific Naturalism and Esoteric Discourse 1900 - 1939


Egil Asprem

The Problem of Disenchantment offers a comprehensive and interdisciplinary approach to the intellectual history of science, religion, and “the occult” in the early 20th century. By developing a new approach to Max Weber’s famous idea of a “disenchantment of the world”, and drawing on an impressively diverse set of sources, Egil Asprem opens up a broad field of inquiry that connects the histories of science, religion, philosophy, and Western esotericism.

Parapsychology, occultism, and the modern natural sciences are usually viewed as distinct cultural phenomena with highly variable intellectual credentials. In spite of this view, Asprem demonstrates that all three have met with similar intellectual problems related to the intelligibility of nature, the relation of facts to values, and the dynamic of immanence and transcendence, and solved them in comparable terms.

Maximos Constas

icons, were not normally believed to have the ability to intercede on behalf of their devotees. Again, the artistic and aesthetic continuities between the two genres are patently obvious, but these features alone do not exhaust the icon’s devotional content or liturgical function. As with the Copernican

Robert Ray

Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions . Kuchar sees this work as encapsulating the anxiety regarding desacramen- talization. By incorporating the perceived disunity of the Copernican uni- verse into the self in Meditation 21, Donne’s speaker reveals the emptiness of an inner space that has turned in upon itself

Inquisition of Galileo’s Dialogue on the Two Chief World Systems, Ptolemaic and Copernican was a sensational moment in the history of the clash between religion and science. Galileo had challenged the antique conception of a universe in which celestial bodies circled in exquisite harmony around a static earth

Jay Pasachoff and Roberta Olson

diameter of the sun’s image at apogee and perigee ruled in favor of the Keplerian/Copernican heliocentric view of the universe and unequivocally against Ptolemy. Moreover, despite the prohibitions against Copernican theory in 1616 and the forced recantation of Galileo in 1633, Catholic astronomers (again

Michael Stausberg

the first sentence of the editor’s preface cited above is to some degree unpacked in the first chapter, modestly entitled “The Copernican Turn in the Study of Religion.” If the title sounds familiar, yes, this is “an expanded and updated” version of an article published by in MTSR in 2013 (King 2013

Kocku von Stuckrad

, 1972–1977 1980 Brighton Harvester Hawking Stephen W. A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes 1988 London Bantam Press Howell Kenneth J. God’s Two Book: Copernican Cosmology and Biblical Interpretation in Early Modern Science 2002 Notre Dame

Jonathan Smith

languages’ “ethno- graphic aspect[s].” 18 As described by one scholar of language: Saussure was doubtless one of the Ž rst to render explicit, for linguistics, the ne- cessity of accomplishing what Kant terms the Copernican revolution. [Saussure] distinguished the subject matter of linguistics, the linguist

Indrek Peedu

. Josephson , Jason Ānanda . 2013 . “God’s Shadow: Occluded Possibilities in the Genealogy of ‘Religion’.” History of Religions 52 ( 4 ): 309 – 339 . King , Richard . 2013 . “The Copernican Turn in the Study of Religion.” Method and Theory in the Study of Religion 25 ( 2 ): 137 – 159

Martin Riexinger

. Nursi was not at all a modernist, though. Whereas he accepted scientific findings that were no longer deniable, such as post-Copernican astronomy, and tried to adapt Islamic beliefs to accommodate them, he faithfully defended core concepts of Sunni theology, such as the rejection of independent