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(953 words)

Author(s): Grübel, Nils
General 1. Originally, ‘apostasy’ (Gk. apostasía, ‘defection’) was a political concept for a rebellion against the established order. In Hellenistic Jewish literature, it was charged with religious connotations, and since then has denoted a defection from the faith. Thus, an apostate is someone who abandons her or his religion to embrace another religion or worldview. But apostasy also denotes a failure to acknowledge certain dogmas, or means the rejection or alteration of actions prescribed for wors…


(795 words)

Author(s): Grübel, Nils
The concept of heresy (Gk., haíresis, ‘choice’) originally denotes the opportunity of a selection to be made among various ancient philosophical schools. With the appearance of the Christian → Church and its orthodoxy, the word receives the polemical meaning of ‘false teaching,’ along with that of ‘particular direction’ or ‘tack.’ The struggle with the heresies (Arianism, Donatism, → Gnosticism) helped a Christianity in the process of formation, itself a particular direction of Judaism, to produce an…


(1,431 words)

Author(s): Grübel, Nils
The ‘Face-to-Face Society’ 1. The commune (Lat., communis, ‘common’), as a conformation of human community, is neither simple nor primordial. It is better understood as a complex process of ‘communization’ ( Vergemeinschaftung, Max Weber), in which individuals learn to connect heterogeneous feelings and ideas, and to insert themselves into a community of solidarity. A commune is a group, readily grasped as a unit, whose members are in underlying agreement in their values, interests, and inclinations, and who seek to experien…