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Systems Theory

(3,570 words)

Author(s): Pollack, Detlef | Hesse, Heidrun | Herms, Eilert | Dinkel, Christoph | Evers, Dirk
[German Version] I. Religious Studies Systems theory considers religion one social system alongside others, like the economy, law (Law and Jurisprudence), politics, and education and analyzes it in terms of the function it discharges. The evolutionary approach of systems theory assumes that in primordial local communities the function of religion was nonspecific and was fulfilled in combination with other functions – military, economic, and familial. The transition to modern societies witnessed a dif…

Pantheism

(2,444 words)

Author(s): Wolfes, Matthias | Dinkel, Christoph
[German Version] I. Philosophy of Religion – II. Dogmatics – III. Practical Theology I. Philosophy of Religion The term pantheism (from Gk πᾶν/ pán, “all,” and ϑεός/ theós, “God”) is a product of the 18th-century critical debates about religion. Coined in discussions about B. de Spinoza, it refers to religio-philosophical conceptions that undertake to relate God and the world through the idea of an all-embracing unity. Its central concept is the immanence of God (Transcendence and immanence) in the totality of all that ex…