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(1,463 words)

Author(s): Prohl, Inken | Strohm, Theodor
[German Version] I. History of Religions – II. Christian Charity I. History of Religions In the Christian context, the term charity signifies the practical implementation of the commandment to love one's neighbor (Love of one 's neighbor) in kindly acts for the benefit of others, such as support for the needy (Poor, Care of the) or the care of the sick (Diakonia; ¶ Caritas). The precondition for this is the specifically Christian love command in forming social relationships and the interiorization of this rule. It is q…

Monastery Schools

(738 words)

Author(s): Prohl, Inken
[German Version] While the ascetic motivation (Asceticism) of the monastic lifestyle is principally accompanied by a dissociation from wordly culture, both prayer and the monastic lectio divina require a certain degree of education. It was this requirement that led to the creation of monastery schools in the context of 4th-century monasticism, thus giving rise to the earliest form of Christian schooling. Children had already been educated by experienced spiritual fathers in the first cenobitic settleme…


(8,725 words)

Author(s): Prohl, Inken | Morgen, Michèle | Stock, Konrad | Steinmann, Michael | Herms, Eilert | Et al.
[German Version] I. History of Religion – II. Bible – III. Dogmatics – IV. Philosophy – V. Philosophy of Religion – VI. Ethics – VII. Practical Theology – VIII. Judaism I. History of Religion The concept of love describes a relationship of affection, tenderness, or devotion between human beings and between humans and God (Love of/for God) or the gods. The Old Testament speaks of the love of God for humanity; in Judaism, the commandment of obedience to God is followed by the commandment to love God (Deut 6:5) and one's fe…


(2,464 words)

Author(s): Tietmeyer, Hans | Prohl, Inken
[German Version] I. Terminology and History – II. Religious Studies – III. Sociology, Economics, and Ethics I. Terminology and History An economy based on division of labor implies manifold exchanges. The exchange of goods and services along with other obligations and commitments requires an orderly monetary system. (a) As a means of payment, money substantially simplifies exchange. (b) As a unit of calculation, money provides a measure of value and means of determining equivalency. (c) Prices represent an infor…


(3,643 words)

Author(s): Prohl, Inken
Illness as a Social Construct 1. ‘Illness’ denotes actual or perceived disturbances of the body, mind, or soul, accompanied by hardship, pain, alterations of body or mind, and a transformed perception of self and the environment. Illness and health are not, however, only bodily and mental facts; they are also social constructs. Which bodily or mental alterations are interpreted as illness, the origins of illness, and how illness is to be healed, all depend on the conceptions of a given society and hi…


(1,122 words)

Author(s): Prohl, Inken
1. Spirits are supernatural beings of neither unambiguously human nor divine origin. It is difficult to distinguish spirits, ghosts, and → demons, and their concepts are usually employed synonymously. The concept of spirit has a broad spectrum of meaning. Under the concept of ‘spirits,’ for instance, fall super-sensory beings and departed persons who tarry yet in the world of the living. A related notion is that of the ‘revenant’ (Fr., ‘coming back’), which names a person who has died an unjust,…