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Chastity

(2,198 words)

Author(s): Baudy, Dorothea | Geissner, Hellmut K. | Schlosser, Marianne
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Ethics – III. Church History I. Religious Studies All cultures subject human reproductive behavior to certain norms; certain situations or periods of life require sexual abstinence. In traditional societies, chastity as an ethical value (Asceticism) is usually an integral part of the religious symbol system. Young people in particular are restricted in their sexual behavior; only when they are able to be economically independent are th…

Sacred Times

(1,513 words)

Author(s): Baudy, Dorothea | Metzger, Marcel | Bieritz, Karl-Heinrich
[German Version] I. Religious Studies Sacred times are ritually observed periods of time of varying duration that serve to modulate life within a community through reference to an exceptional shared experience. Someone who prays at an appointed hour knows that he or she is united with like-minded others even when alone. When people live close to nature, the necessary cooperation requires adaptation to the environment’s seasonal changes. There the ritual organization of temporal caesuras addresses bot…

Omen/Omina

(2,063 words)

Author(s): Lorenz, Günther | Albani, Matthias | Baudy, Dorothea | Iwersen, Julia
[English Version] I. Religionswissenschaftlich O., lat. in semantischer Nähe zu prodigium (»Vorhersage«) und auspicium (oblativum; »[spontanes] Vogelzeichen«), meint ein Geschehnis, das als Vorzeichen wichtiger überwiegend negativer, aber auch positiver Erlebnisse gedeutet, doch nicht willentlich gesucht wird wie Orakelantworten (Orakel) o. ä. Oft handelt es sich um Begegnungen mit Tieren (bes. größere Vogelarten, Spinnen, Schlangen, Katzen) oder das Hören von Stimmen (z.B. Eulenvögel, Schakal) ode…

Daphne

(387 words)

Author(s): Hünemörder, Christian (Hamburg) | Baudy, Dorothea (Konstanz) | Bieberstein, Klaus (Fribourg)
[English version] [1] Pflanze (δάφνη). In der Ant. Bezeichnung des dem Apollon und der Artemis hl. Lorbeer Laurus nobilis L. aus der Familie der Lauraceae, nicht der h. Thymelaeaceen-Gattung des Seidelbastes (Cneorum). Hünemörder, Christian (Hamburg) [English version] [2] Nymphe, in Lorbeer verwandelt (Δάφνη). Die keusche, jagdliebende, der Artemis ergebene Nymphe D., Tochter des Flußgottes Ladon (oder Peneios) und der Gaia, flieht vor Apollon, der sie mit seiner Liebe bedrängt, und verwandelt sich in den Lorbeerbaum, mit dessen Zweigen…

Sacred Sites

(2,374 words)

Author(s): Baudy, Dorothea | Reichert, Andreas | Dan, Joseph | Koch, Guntram
[German Version] I. Religious Studies Characterization of a place as “sacred” or “holy” lends it a special status vis-à-vis its environment. Usually specific regulations govern how it is entered and used. Traditionally this status has been grounded in the belief that the site is proper to a deity or another spiritual being, or that a special power emanates from it. Sacred sites are particularly common at the center and on the fringes of group territories: the “men’s house” or festival ground defines the center of a village, just as the temple complex on …

Omen

(2,294 words)

Author(s): Lorenz, Günther | Albani, Matthias | Baudy, Dorothea | Iwersen, Julia
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Ancient Near East and Old Testament – III. Greco-Roman Antiquity – IV. The Milieu of Modern Alternative Religions I. Religious Studies An omen (Lat. omen, related semantically to prodigium, “portent,” and auspicium [ oblativum], “[spontaneous] divination from the flight of birds”) is a phenomenon that is interpreted as a portent (Premonition) of an important event, mostly negative but sometimes positive; unlike oracles, omens are not sought deliberately. Often they involve encounters with an…

Cult/Worship

(8,783 words)

Author(s): Baudy, Dorothea | Xella, Paolo | Ego, Beate | Niebuhr, Karl-Wilhelm | Lehmkühler, Karsten | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. History of Scholarship – III. Ancient Near East – IV. Old Testament and Early Judaism – V. New Testament – VI. Philosophy of Religion – VII. Christianity – VIII. Liturgical Practice – IX. Ethics I. Religious Studies 1. Concept The word “cult” comes from Lat. cultus. Cicero ( De senectute 56) uses the phrase cultus deorum in the sense of “worship of the gods.” It invariably refers to acts of “care and tending”; in secular contexts the word denotes agrarian work (cf. agriculture). There are analogous words in other ancient languages…

Magic

(9,806 words)

Author(s): Wiggermann, Franciscus A.M. | Wiggermann, F.A.M. | Betz, Hans Dieter | Baudy, Dorothea | Joosten, Jan | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Antiquity – III. Bible – IV. Church History – V. Practical Theology – VI. Philosophy of Religion – VII. Judaism – VIII. Islam I. Religious Studies No definition of magic has as yet found general acceptance. Approaches that go back to the late 19th century (E.B. Tylor, J.G. Frazer) view magic as a primitive cognitive system, the lowest rung on an evolutionary ladder (Evolution) that progresses with religion and science (cf. also Myth/Mythology: I). Magic in this view is charact…
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