Religion Past and Present

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(13,595 words)

[German Version]

I. Terminology – II. Religious Studies – III. Church History – IV. Buddhism – V. India

I. Terminology

Monasticism is a collective term for an alternative way of life, always religiously motivated, that includes asceticism but is also characterized by a more or less radical withdrawal from society (the “world”) as well as from the monastics' own community of faith. The term monk commonly used in Christianity (from secular Gk μοναχός/monachós, “solitary,” Lat. monachus…

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Köpf, Ulrich, Freiberger, Oliver, Mürmel, Heinz and Horstmann, Monika, “Monasticism”, in: Religion Past and Present. Consulted online on 25 July 2024 <>
First published online: 2011
First print edition: ISBN: 9789004146662, 2006-2013

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