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Substitution

(3,183 words)

Author(s): Winter, Franz | Janowski, Bernd | Frey, Jörg | Schaede, Stephan | Pree, Helmuth | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies The term substitution, originating in the language of law, is used primarily in Christian theology, but it is well suited for use in religious studies as well, even though so far there has been no detailed systematic treatment of it. In the most general sense, we speak of substitution when the true subject affected or acting (God, an individual like the king, or a collective) is represented by another ¶ entity (a person or group, an animal, or an object) as a substitute involved (actively or passively) in the action, acting for the…

Flood, The

(1,427 words)

Author(s): Winter, Franz | Arneth, Martin
[German Version] I. History of Religions – II. Old Testament I. History of Religions The concept of a flood of gigantic proportions that destroys the whole world is attested in many cultures and their religious traditions. The starting-points were ¶ probably locally limited natural events that were stylized as occurrences of cosmic proportions. The following are the most important motifs of flood traditions: 1. An immense flood (often connected with additional phenomena of the force of nature, such as fire, volcanoes, etc.) extermin…

End of the World

(2,438 words)

Author(s): Winter, Franz | Zager, Werner | Zachhuber, Johannes | Evers, Dirk
[German Version] I. History of Religions – II. Bible I. History of Religions The (potentially) imminent end of the world is taken up in many religious traditions, as is evident from the ¶ many graphic accounts of it. The term end of the world refers primarily to cosmological (“physical”) eschatology, as distinct from individual and collective eschatology (i.e. from the idea of a judgment of all or of each person individually). Some fundamental distinctions should be drawn. First, cyclically oriented models of explaining the end of the …

Theogony

(488 words)

Author(s): Winter, Franz
[German Version] The term theogony derives from Greek and means literally “the coming-into-being or birth of the gods.” It was shaped by the Theogonia of the early Greek poet Hesiod (c. 700 bce), basically a didactic epic on the initial appearance of the Greek gods and their subsequent genealogy. It has since become customary to use the term theogony cross-culturally for the mythological genealogies of the gods found in many cultures. As a rule, a theogony typically recounts the appearance of the gods as a sequence of gods eit…