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(3,115 words)

Author(s): Brück, Michael v. | Nicol, Martin | Bäumer, Bettina | Mürmel, Heinz
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Christianity – III. The Religions of India – IV. Buddhism I. Religious Studies Meditation is a general term for different, variously contextualized methods of training consciousness that are found in various religions. The term itself originated in the Platonic/Neoplatonic Christian tradition (Platonism, Neoplatonism), where it means “intensively focused thought.” The works of Hugh and Richard of St. Victor as well as Bonaventura and J. de Gerson treat meditation as a stage in the progress of the spiritual life: lectiomeditatio – ( o…


(12,278 words)

Author(s): Nicol, Martin | Beutel, Albrecht | Fuchs, Ottmar | Felmy, Karl Christian | Hermelink, Jan | Et al.
[German Version] I. General Preaching (from Lat. praedicare, “proclaim publicly”) is spiritual or religious speech, in contrast, for example, to forensic speech, political speech, or celebratory speech. Its setting is the worship of the community (Ministerial offices), church activities such as evangelism, devotions (Devotion [Attitude]), and ordinations (Consecration/Ordination/Dedication), and – in various forms – the media (see IV below). ¶ Communication in preaching, reduced to its basic elements, can be represented as a triangle of the preacher, th…


(2,321 words)

Author(s): Müller, Hans-Martin | Nicol, Martin | Kuyt, Annelies
[German Version] I. History – II. Catholic and Protestant Preaching Today – III. Medieval and Modern Judaism I. History Preaching preceded its theory, homiletics. The first attempts to frame a theory of preaching were those of John Chrysostom (περὶ ἱεροσύνης/ perí hierosýnēs) and Augustine of Hippo ( Doctr. chr.), who built on con-¶ temporary rhetoric. For centuries preachers learned their art more by example than by theoretical reflection. For the Early Church, synagogue instruction (see III below), the philosophical diatribe, and the preachin…


(874 words)

Author(s): Oberdorfer, Bernd | Nicol, Martin
[German Version] I. Ethics 1. In a broad sense, sociability denotes the fundamental anthropological structure of human beings as social animals. But the Greek concept of the ζῷον πολιτικόν/ zṓon politikón already suggests a narrower understanding, since it addresses the specific way of life of free citizens, relieved of the burden of obtaining the necessities of life, in which the destiny of human beings is realized. Loosely based on this tradition, with special attention to Aristotle’s theory of friendship ( Eth. Nic. VIII and IX) and influenced by aspects of Pietism and th…

Sermon Preparation and Meditation

(515 words)

Author(s): Nicol, Martin
[German Version] Classical rhetoric specified the steps of the way leading to a sermon (Preaching) until the 20th century: finding the material ( inventio) – organization ( dispositio) – presentation ( elocutio) – memorization ( memoria) – delivery ( actio). Traditionally, as in the work of D. Hollaz, there have been two stages on the path from the (biblical) text to¶ the sermon: interpretation ( explicatio) and application ( applicatio). By the 20th century at the latest, this two-stage process was being increasingly questioned – on grounds of the self-efficacy …