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Miracle

(8,918 words)

Author(s): Neu, Rainer | Fabry, Heinz-Josef | Alkier, Stefan | Gregersen, Niels Henrik | Evers, Dirk | Et al.
[German Version] I. History of Religions – II. Old Testament – III. New Testament – IV. Church History – V. Philosophy of Religion – VI. Fundamental Theology – VII. Dogmatics – VIII. Education and Practical Theology – IX. Judaism – X. Islamic Theology…

Early Catholicism

(351 words)

Author(s): Alkier, Stefan
[German Version] The term “early Catholicism” is used when features of a hierarchical, official institutionalization of Christianity are discernible before the 3rd century (e.g. the binding of the Spirit to the office; the principle of tradition and succession; development of a monarchical episcopate; sacramentalism), ultimately leading to the firm establishment of Christianity i…

Semiotics

(3,339 words)

Author(s): Grasmück, Oliver | Macho, Thomas | Alkier, Stefan | Kober, Michael | Vetter, Martin | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies Semiotics, a discipline inaugurated primarily by C.S. Peirce and Ferdinand de Saussure (see II and IV below), is the systematic analysis of signs (Gk σημεῖον/ sēmeíon) and the way the human mind perceives and understands them. A sign in the sense of semiotics can be any present physical or mental entity that is in a position to stand for an entity not present. A sign is constituted by the conjunction of two elements, the signifier and the signified. In religious studies, semiotics examines both the concrete realization of religious signs (religious art, scriptures, cult) and their linkage to form a complex semantic network, a religious code (Eco; see II below). It is important to note that, from the perspective of those using religious signs, they stand for a “higher” reality, which cannot make its appearance directly but requires the mediation of signs; therefore it surpasses human perception and understanding (Hermeneutics; cf. Gay & Patte, Deuser). Even though semiotic thinking is found in some of the classic studies of religion (Tramsen), and the notion of religion as a semiotic system is accepted increasingly in recent research (e.g. Gladigow),…

Semiotik

(2,997 words)

Author(s): Grasmück, Oliver | Macho, Thomas | Alkier, Stefan | Kober, Michael | Vetter, Martin | Et al.
[English Version] …

Wunder

(7,812 words)

Author(s): Neu, Rainer | Fabry, Heinz-Josef | Alkier, Stefan | Gregersen, Niels Henrik | Evers, Dirk | Et al.
[English Version] I. Religionsgeschichtlich W. sind außergewöhnliche und Verwunderung auslösende Erfahrungen von Menschen, die sie aus ihrem Verständnis von Normalität nicht erklären können und die für sie in vielen Fällen auf das Eingreifen einer Gottheit bzw. außermenschlichen Macht verweisen. W. treten in allen Kulturen auf und gehören zum Traditionsgut nahezu aller Rel. Nach ihrem Verständnis, Wertschätzung und Funktion können ihnen jedoch je nach ihrem hist., rel. und kulturellen Kontext recht unterschiedliche Bedeutungen zukommen.…