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Ashrams, Christian

(499 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (cf. Āśrama) Christian ashrams are found in India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka. They are places for religious …

Westermann, Claus

(453 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (Oct 7, 1909, Berlin – Jun 11, 2000, Heidelberg), Old Testament scholar. His father Diedrich Westermann was a specialist in African languages. After schooling and university studies, he served in the Confessing Church; after military service and imprisonment, he served as a pastor in (West) Berlin, where after 1949 he also taught as a lecturer in the theological seminary, being appointed professor in 1954. From 1958 until his retirement in 1977, he was a professor in the faculty o…

Eschatology

(22,095 words)

Author(s): Filoramo, Giovanni | Müller, Hans-Peter | Lindemann, Andreas | Sautter, Gerhard | Rosenau, Hartmut | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies –…

Song of Songs, The

(1,290 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Peter | Otto, Eckart
[German Version] I. Place and Date While individual poems like Song 1:9–11 may go back to the preexilic period, collections, redaction(s), and linguistic revision(s) date from just before and especially during the 3rd century bce. The text contains several loanwords: pardēs (4:13: “orchard,” from Old Iranian), ¶ ʾ appiryôn (3:9: “palanquin,” most likely from Gk), and qinnāmôn (4:14: “cinnamon,” ultimately from Malay kayu manis, “sweet wood”), along with several words borrowed from Old Indic. Beside numerous lexical and grammatical Aramaisms, it exhibits fea…

Myth and Mythology

(12,158 words)

Author(s): Segal, Robert Alan | Kamel, Susan | Müller, Hans-Peter | Graf, Fritz | Cancik, Hubert | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. History – III. Philosophy of Religion – IV. Fundamental Theology. – V. Missiology I. Religious Studies 1. The Concept and Its History Myth may be defined by either content or function. Defined by content, myth is a belief about something significant, such as the world or society. Defined by function, myth accomplishes something significant, such as explaining the world or supporti…

Vivekānanda

(297 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Peter
[German Version] Swāmī (born Narendranāth Datta; Jan 12, 1863, Calcutta – Jul 4, 1902, Be…

Roy, Raja Rammohun

(412 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (May 22, Radhanagar, Bengal – Sep 27, 1833, Bristol, England). During the era of British colonial rule in India, Roy was an advocate of religious and social reforms in Hinduism. Drawing on Vedānta and the Upaniṣads while appealing to reason and common…

Olcott, Henry Steel

(294 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (Aug 2, 1832, Orange, NJ – Feb 17, 1907, Adyar near Madras). Olcott grew up in a Presbyterian family. As a young man he turned to spiritualist circles (Spiritualism). Following a career as a journalist (from 1853), he was an agricultural expert, an officer of the Union in th…

Semitic Languages

(2,070 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Peter | Knauf, Ernst Axel
[German Version] I. General Survey 1. Origin and classification. Like the Indo-European and Hamitic languages, the Semitic languages are inflectional; in contrast to isolating and agglutinative languages, they can change the form of a root, for example Arabic singular rūḥ, “spirit, breath,” plural ʾ arwāḥ. The relationship between the Semitic and Hamitic languages is clearly the product of prehistoric migrations of groups sp…

Monotheism and Polytheism

(5,621 words)

Author(s): Ahn, Gregor | Müller, Hans-Peter | Hübner, Hans | Gunton, Colin
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Old Testament. – III. New Testament – IV. Philosophy of Religion – V. Dogmatics I. Religious Studies Monotheistic ideas of God, which take as their starting point the existence and activity of a single God, have long dominated the understanding of religion in historically Christian Europe. The term monotheism itself is a modern coinage, first appearing in 1660 in the work of the English philosopher Henry More. As a contrast …

Tilak, Nārāyan Vāman

(244 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (1862, Karazgāon, Ratnāgiri district – May 9, 1919, Bombay [Mumbai]). Tilak’s father, a Chitpavan-Brahmin, was a registrar. Tilak studied Sanskrit with a Vedic scholar and attended an English highschool for two years. His literary gifts were…

Upadhyaya, Brahmabandhab

(325 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (real name Bhavani Charan Banerjee; Feb 11, 1861, Khanyan, Bengal – Oct 27, 1907, Calcutta [Kolkata]). Upadhyaya’s father, a Brahmin, was a police inspector in British service. Upadhyaya attended English schools and colleges as well as a traditional Sanskrit school. He became familiar with Christianity through his uncle, the Protestant pastor Kalicharan Banerjee (1847–1907) and the Brāhmo Samāj, which he joined in 1887. He worked as a teacher and journalist, publishing his own per…

Gandhi, Mahātmā

(493 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (honorific title meaning “great self,” actual name: Moha…