Religion Past and Present

Get access Subject: Religious Studies
Edited by: Hans Dieter Betz, Don S. Browning†, Bernd Janowski and Eberhard Jüngel

Religion Past and Present (RPP) Online is the online version of the updated English translation of the 4th edition of the definitive encyclopedia of religion worldwide: the peerless Religion in Geschichte und Gegenwart (RGG). This great resource, now at last available in English and Online, Religion Past and Present Online continues the tradition of deep knowledge and authority relied upon by generations of scholars in religious, theological, and biblical studies. Including the latest developments in research, Religion Past and Present Online encompasses a vast range of subjects connected with religion.

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(371 words)

Author(s): Jacobs, Martin
[German Version] The Aramaic term תַּנָּא/ tannāʾ, “reciter, teacher” (pl. תַּנָּאִים/ tannāʾîm) is generally applied to the Palestinian rabbis (II, 1) of the 1st–3rd centuries ce, i.e. before the compilation of the Mishnah; their teaching, considered authoritative, was originally preserved through oral recitation. As representatives of the formative phase of rabbinic Judaism, the Tannaim are distinguished from the Amoraim, their successors, the authorities of the Talmud. In the Talmud, however, the title Tanna can also be given to a “reciter” in the Amoraic academy…


(271 words)

Author(s): Gengnagel, Jörg
[German Version] (Sanskrit, “warp, loom; doctrine”). Tantra denotes a practical path ( sādhanā) on which ritual, physical (Body control techniques: III), and mental techniques are used to achieve worldly pleasure ( bhukti) and extraordinary proficiencies ( siddhi), or to be delivered from all worldly ties ( mukti) during one’s lifetime. The roots of tantra lie in the cultural sphere of India. There tantra denotes both a genre of religious and philosophical literature as well as the revelatory literature associated with Tantrism. Elements of tantra are also…


(991 words)

Author(s): Gengnagel, Jörg | Kollmar-Paulenz, Karénina
[German Version] I. Definition Elements of Tantrism (from Sanskrit tantra, “warp, loom; doctrine”) are present in various religious symbol systems. In addition to the central role of the goddess or ¶ female power and energy (Śakti), ritual acceptance and initiation ( dīkṣā) into the particular religious tradition by a Tantric master or guru ( ācārya), who embodies a specific succession of teachers, are important. The initiation ritual is usually associated with the replacement of the initiate’s mundane name, the communication of specific Tantric ma…


(868 words)

Author(s): Ludwig, Frieder | Mungure, Elieshi
[German Version] I. General The name Tanzania is an artificial coinage introduced in 1964 with the formation of the United Republic of Tanganyika and Zanzibar. The republic has an area of 942,000 km2, including the islands of Pemba, Zanzibar, and Mafia, with some 2,000 km2. The most important vegetation zones are savannahs, veldt, semidesert, and the fertile coastal plain on the Indian Ocean. The continental area includes 54,000 km2 of inland lakes, primarily along the Great African Rift Valley. With an altitude of 5,895 m, Kilimanjaro reaches the highest elevat…


(179 words)

Author(s): Reiter, Florian C.
[German Version] (or Dao) is a central concept of Chinese philosophy and religion. Its basic meaning is “way” or “path”; Confucius used it in the sense of “right way” and “order.” As the way or order of the universe, in the literature of Taoism the word came to denote a fundamental abstract concept, defined neither temporally, spatially, nor personally. The Tao te Ching (“Book of the Tao and Its Virtue”) explains it as the epitome of the ultimate ground and being of all entities and their natural concord. Since the 2nd century ce, religious Taoism has revered its author Lao Tsu as the …


(4,368 words)

Author(s): Seiwert, Hubert | Reiter, Florian C.
[German Version] I. History Philosophical Taoism (Daoism) is associated with names from the history of China’s traditional literature such as Lao Tsu (Tao te Ching) and Zhuangzi. Their influence can be seen in belles lettres and in philological and philosophical commentaries. The situation of religious Taoism (“Celestial Master” Taoism: Tianshidao or Cheng Yi Taoism), which first appeared as a religion in China in the 2nd century ce, is quite different. Its history falls into three periods: (1) the formative period, 2nd–6th centuries; (2) the period of consoli…

Tao te Ching

(187 words)

Author(s): Reiter, Florian C.
[German Version] (or Dao de Ching), “The Book of the Tao and Its Virtue,” a key text of literary Taoism. The work is also known under the name of its putative author Lao Tsu; it was probably composed during the Period of the Warring States (481–221 bce). Two chapters with 81 aphorisms describe the concept of the Tao at length. An extensive commentary literature began to emerge in the 2nd century bce. The Heshang Gong commentary (2nd cent. bce) introduced the religious Taoist interpretation of the text, which concentrates on the physical and spiritual nature of human being…

Tao Tsang

(86 words)

Author(s): Seiwert, Hubert
[German Version] (Pinyin: Dào Zàng), “Treasury of the Tao,” a canonical collection of Taoist texts (Canon: VIII). The standard 1926 edition (with several reprs.) is based on a 1445 printing of more than 5,300 scrolls ( juan), with supplements added in 1607; it comprises almost 1,500 titles, including liturgical, historical, and philosophical texts. Hubert Seiwert Bibliography N. Ōfuchi, “The formation of the Taoist Canon,” in: H. Welch & A. Seidel, eds., Facets of Taoism, 1979, 253–267 J.M. Boltz, “Taoist Literature,” EncRel (E) XIV, 1987, 317–329.

Tareev, Mikhail Mikhailovich

(150 words)

Author(s): Wasmuth, Jennifer
[German Version] (Nov 7, 1866, Kozlovskie Vyselki, Ryazan’ Gubernia – Jun 1934, Moscow), was from 1902 to 1918 professor of moral theology at the Moscow Spiritual Academy and from 1919 to 1927 lecturer in philosophy and political economy at various secular institutions. One of the most original Russian theologians at the turn of the century, with a rejection of juridical categories that was characteristic of Orthodox soteriology in that period he developed an interpretation of redemption (VI, 4.b)…


(80 words)

Author(s): Jacobs, Martin
[German Version] rabbinic scholar in Palestinian Lydda c. 200 ce. Tarfon belonged to a priestly family and is assigned to the second generation of Tannaim. Rabbinic literature preserves most of his teachings in discussions with Akiba ben Joseph. He should probably not be identified with the Trypho mentioned by Justin Martyr. Martin Jacobs Bibliography J.D. Gereboff, Rabbi Tarfon: The Tradition, the Man and Early Rabbinic Judaism, 1979 F.G. Willems, “Le juif Tryfon et rabbi Tarfon,” Bijdr. 50/3, 1989, 278–292.

Targum Research

(838 words)

Author(s): Ego, Beate
[German Version] I. Aramaic Targumim Targum texts first attracted the attention of Jewish exegesis (VIII, 2; Bible translations: I, 4) and of Christian Humanism. In the late 18th century, the scholarly study of Targum literature then began in the wake of the Wissenschaft des Judentums (Berliner; Ginsburger). Targum research also received decisive impulses from the discoveries of the texts from the Cairo Geniza (II; Kahle, Klein), the discovery of the Targum Neofiti in 1956 (Díez Macho), the publication of hitherto unknown Yemenite manuscripts (Sperber), as well as …

Tariff Autonomy

(268 words)

Author(s): Cansier, Dieter
[German Version] (Ger. Tarifautonomie: free collective bargaining) means that conditions of employment, including pay scales, are established by the parties to a contract without state intervention. In Germany it is constitutionally protected by the freedom of association guaranteed by Basic Law art. 9; its primary legal embodiment is in the collective bargaining act. Collective agreements can be made between an employers’ association and a trade union (industry-wide contract) or between an employe…

Tarkovsky, Andrey Arsenyevich

(171 words)

Author(s): Bauschulte, Manfred
[German Version] (Apr 4, 1932, Zavrazhye – Sep 2, 1986, Paris). Born to a cultured Russian family, in the 1950s he worked as an assistant to the Soviet film director Mikhail Romm; in 1962 his Ivanovodetstvo (ET: Ivan’s Childhood, 1963) became his first international success. From his important major film Andrey Rublyov (1966/1971; ET: Andrei Rublev, 1973) through Solyaris (1972; ET: Solaris) and Stalker (1977/1978) to Nostalghia (Ital.: 1983), his central theme was the question of how to turn the powerful symbolic images of the Byzantine iconostasis into a fi…


(234 words)

Author(s): Illert, Martin
[German Version] (or Tŭrnovo), today Veliko Tǎrnovo, on the Yantra River; the seat of the metropolitan of northern Bulgaria. The city, on the site of the Byzantine fortress of Zikideva on the Tsarevets and Trapezica hills, was the administrative and intellectual center of the second Bulgarian Empire (1186–1393; Bulgaria). Made an archbishopric in 1186, after 1204 it was the seat of the primate of Bulgaria and from 1235 to 1393 the residence of the patriarch. After the Ottoman conquest in 1393, it…


(251 words)

Author(s): Gummelt, Volker
[German Version] 1. Paul (Jun 29, 1562, Grevesmühlen – Apr 6, 1633, Rostock), Lutheran theologian. He studied in Rostock in 1581/1582 and from 1585 to 1589; in 1589 he was appointed rector of the municipal school in Parchim and in Rostock in 1593. In 1604 he succeeded his ¶ teacher D. Chyträus as senior professor of theology at Rostock. His major works include De sacrosancto ministerio (1623/1624), a comprehensive presentation of the Lutheran theology of the ministry in 3 volumes, as well as a commentary on John (1629). His inaugural address as rector on Apr 23, 1624, De novo evangelio, conta…


(526 words)

Author(s): Zangenberg, Jürgen | Schwemer, Anna Maria
[German Version] I. Archaeology Tarsus (Ταρσοί, Xenophon, Anabasis I 2,23; ἡ Ταρσός, Arrian, Anabasis II 4.5), city west of the Cilician Gates (Cilicia; for location see Asia Minor, map). Thanks to its situation on the navigable lower reaches of the Cydnus and at the crossroads of the routes between Antioch and the Aegean and from the Mediterranean to the Black Sea, Tarsus had always served as a bridge between East and West. The finds of Goldman, especially pottery from the 1st millennium bce, for which there had long been no comparative material, are presently being evaluate…


(927 words)

Author(s): Hauptmann, Peter | Maurer, Trude
[German Version] I. City and Bishopric Tartu (Estonian; Ger. Dorpat, Russ. Yuryev) is the oldest city in Estonia (Baltic countries); with a population of 103,000 (2009), it is also the second largest. It was founded in 1224 by the Livonian Brothers of the Sword after their capture of an ancient fortress on the Emajogi, connecting Lake Võrtsjärv with Lake Peipus. Bishop Hermann, appointed as bishop for the Ests, established his residence in Tartu in 1224 and in 1228 began construction of the Cathedral of St. Peter and St. Paul, in the 14th and 15th centuries the largest spec-¶ imen of sacred …


(263 words)

Author(s): Recki, Birgit
[German Version] (Lat. gustus/ sapor; Fr. goût; Ger. Geschmack) is the ability to discern pleasure and displeasure. Originally limited to the physical sense of tasting, since antiquity the term has been applied figuratively to perception, judgment, speech, and conduct (e.g. M.T. Cicero). In the mid-17th century, it was discussed in ethics (Gracián, French moralist literature); in the 18th century, it became a central concept of aesthetics (I) throughout Europe. Advanced theories of epistemology grounded…

Tast, Hermann

(177 words)

Author(s): Schilling, Johannes
[German Version] (Harmen; 1490 or 1491, Husum – May 11, 1551, Husum), matriculated at Wittenberg in 1511. In 1534 and 1542 he is mentioned as holder of the benefice of the altar of St. Michael in the Marien-¶ kirche in Husum. It is reported that he had been preaching “evangelically” in Husum since 1522, with the support of Matthias Knutzen, a merchant. In 1527 he was appointed senior preacher of the Marienkirche in Husum, where he also had a hand in reorganizing the Latin school. He was a spokesman at the Flensburg disputation on Ap…


(376 words)

Author(s): Petersen, William
[German Version] (c. 120–c. 180), Christian apologist (Apologists), Gospel harmonist (Gospel Harmony), phi-¶ losopher and Encratite. Born in “Assyria” ( Oratio ad Graecos, XXXII/1), he set out in search of “truth.” After passing through various Greek philosophical schools, he eventually converted to Christianity. Eventually he ended up in Rome (c. 155), where he was one of Justin Martyr’s auditors. After Justin’s death (c.165), Irenaeus of Lyon (Iren. Haer. I 28.1) reports that Tatian became “puffed up with pride at the thought of being a teacher.” He states th…
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