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(3,429 words)

Author(s): Schütt, Hans-Peter | Russell, Robert John | Steiger, Johann Anselm | Huxel, Kirsten
[German Version] I. Philosophy – II. Science – III. Dogmatics – IV. Ethics I. Philosophy Causality (from Lat. causa, “cause”), also causal nexus, causal relationship, is a term for the characteristic relationship between cause and effect. The things related are generally assumed to be pairs of events (event causality), though in some cases they may be an active thing and an event (agent causality); whether agent causality can be reduced to event causality is disputed. In either ca…

Body and Soul

(4,458 words)

Author(s): Wilke, Annette | Korsch, Dietrich | Schütt, Hans-Peter | Seiferlein, Alfred | Huxel, Kirsten
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Philosophy of Religion and Historical Theology – III. Philosophy – IV. Dogmatics – V. Practical Theology – VI. Ethics I. Religious Studies Perceptions of animate and inanimate nature, dreams, ecstasy, trance, and death, as well as sickness and physical sensation, and finally self-reflection and self-transcendence have led to highly diverse models for interpreting body and mind, as well as the relationship between them. Typologically, we may distinguish holistic and dualistic interpretative models of body and mind as well as various hybrid forms. The codification and value assigned by these models to the concepts of body (Body and corporeality) and soul vary from culture to culture. The world as a whole or certain objects can be perceived as endowed with a soul or special power. The dyad “body and soul” is a specifically European interpretative model, combining Jewish, (Neo) Platonic, Aristotelian, and Christian concepts. Of Jewish origin are the integrative view of biological and spiritual life and the belief that God breathed life into humanity. Effectively, however, the notion of a single psychosomatic whole took second place to the dualistic, indeed antagonistic disjunction of “mortal life” and “immortal soul” as well as body and mind. The influence of Plato and Christian ethics contributed significantly to this dualism. The dichotomy …


(2,299 words)

Author(s): Russell, Robert John | Mörth, Ingo | Schütt, Hans-Peter | Herms, Eilert
[German Version] I. Natural Sciences – II. Religious Studies – III. Philosophy – IV. Systematic Theology I. Natural Sciences The concept of contingency/chance occurs in various contexts and meanings in the natural sciences. In the simplest case, contingency denotes an event, a process or a property, the finality of which exists without an immediately discernible or determinable cause. Although we inaccura…


(277 words)

Author(s): Schütt, Hans-Peter
[German Version] from Greek ἐντελέχεια/ entelécheia, composed of ἐντελής ( entelḗs, “complete, -standing”) and ἐχειν ( échein, “to have”); in Aristotle usually synonymous with ἐνέργεια ( enérgeia, “reality, realization”; Lat. actus) and antonymous to δύναμις ( dýnamis, “possibility, capacity”; Lat. potentia); also a component in the explication of what characterizes a substance as form in contrast to matter. The Greek expression entered the terminology of Latin philosophy untranslated as entelechia, inasmuch as it was not simply rendered (e.g. in Thomas Aquinas) with actus or p…


(1,014 words)

Author(s): Schütt, Hans-Peter | Mühling, Markus
[German Version] I. Philosophy – II. Philosophy of Religion and Fundamental Theology I. Philosophy


(2,915 words)

Author(s): Gephart, Werner | Schütt, Hans-Peter | Schlapkohl, Corinna | Stroh, Ralf | Mette, Norbert
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Philosophy – III. Dogmatics – IV. Ethics – V. Practical Theology I. Religious Studies Identity is not in the classical repertoire of religious studies and the sociology of religion. But the central problem of social identity, formulated as a question, makes its religious significance obvious: “Where do we come from?” is answered by c…


(2,182 words)

Author(s): Figl, Johann | Schütt, Hans-Peter | Rosenau, Hartmut
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Philosophy – III. Philosophy of Religion – IV. Dogmatics I. Religious Studies In the study of religion, the term “monism” denotes concepts that relate the whole of reality to a single principle, and understand diversity and plurality as an all- unity. Monism, from the Gk μόνος/ monos (“alone, single”) is thus also in religious studies to be unde…

Quine, Willard Van Orman

(335 words)

Author(s): Schütt, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (Jun 25, 1908, Akron, OH – Dec 25, 2000, Boston, MA), the most influential and, in theoretical philosophy, also the most significant ¶ postwar American philosopher. Impressed by B. Russell and his works, Quine devoted himself even as an undergraduate at Oberlin College (1926–1931) to what was then the new field of mathematical logic, which he continued to pursue in his Harvard dissertation, under the direction of A.N. Whitehead. After receiving his doctorate in 1932, Quine traveled to Europe, where he m…

Jungius, Joachim

(289 words)

Author(s): Schütt, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (Latinized form of Junge; Oct 22, 1587, Lübeck – Sep 23, 1657, Hamburg), German naturalist and philosopher. Jungius studied philosophy and mathematics in Rostock and Gießen (1606–1608), and medicine in Rostock und Padua (1616–1619). He was active in Rostock and other places in northern Germany as a physician, private scholar, and, finally, also as a professor until he became rector of the Johanneum or the Academic Gymnasium in Hamburg in…


(5,668 words)

Author(s): Cancik, Hubert | Schütt, Hans-Peter | Grube, Andreas | Herms, Eilert | Schmidt, Heinz
[German Version] I. Concept 1. The origin of the Latin word persona (“mask, role, status”) is unknown; it may be Etruscan. The philologist Gavius Bassus (1st cent. bce) traced the “origin” of the word to the function of the ancient theater mask, namely that of a megaphone which concentrated the voice and caused it to “sound through” ( per-sonare; cf. Gellius, Noctes Atticae V 7) in a more sonorous way. The corresponding Greek word is πρόσωπον/ prósōpon, “face, mask, front.” The word “persona” is employed in grammar, rhetoric, jurisprudence, and philosophy. What the modern age subsumes under person, personhood, and “personality” (Personality/Persona…

MacTaggart, John Ellis

(125 words)

Author(s): Schütt, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (McTaggart; Sep 3, 1866, London – Jan 18, 1925, London), English philosopher, representative of British idealism, in contrast to which B. Russell and G. Moore made their mark. Educated at Trinity College, Cambridge, where he spent his entire academic life: from 1891, fellow; from 1897 to 1923, lecturer. Particularly influential was his proof of the unreality of time, controversially discussed well into the second half of the 20th century.…

Descartes, René

(1,298 words)

Author(s): Schütt, Hans-Peter
[German Version] (Des Cartes, Latin. as Renatus Cartesius; Mar 31, 1596, La Haye/Touraine – Feb 11, 1650, Stockholm), French mathematician, naturalist, and philosopher. He was one of the most influential figures in the history of science and of ideas in early modern times. Descartes came from a middle-class family in the French provinces. From 1607 to1615, he …


(534 words)

Author(s): Schütt, Hans-Peter
[German Version] a philosophical trend of late 17th and early 18th-century Europe going back to R. Descartes. Initially, the appellation “Cartesians” was applied to those who had known Descartes personally and either adopted some of his teachings or simply disseminated them. These included, in the Netherlands: Cornelius van Hooghelande (c.1590–1676), Heinri Reniersz (latinized as Reneri, c.1593–1639), Henri le Roy (latinized as Regius, 1598–1679), and Adrian Heer…