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Elephantine Documents

(1,630 words)

Author(s): Lang, Bernhard
[German Version] I. History of the Discovery – II. The Jewish Military Colony – III. Literary Texts On the island of Elephantine in the Nile a large number of ancient inscriptions and documents came to light. Of special …

Processions

(986 words)

Author(s): Lang, Bernhard
[German Version] I. Religious Studies Processions (on the history of the term, see II below), struc…

Riddle

(383 words)

Author(s): Lang, Bernhard
[German Version] ( in religious studies). The riddle is one of the oldest contrived formations of human speech. Most riddles are encrypted descriptions of persons, things or facts. As indirect communications they challenge the astuteness of the hearer or reader. Appreciation of riddles arises from the enjoyment of playful concealing, seeking, and finding of meaning, and also from the insight that no deeper knowledge can be acquired without striving to understand. Thus oracles can also…

Ethnology

(2,732 words)

Author(s): Hefner, Philip | Thiel, Josef Franz | Lang, Bernhard
[German Version] I. The Concept – II. Comparative Religion – III. Old Testament – IV. Ethnology and Theology I. The Concept The scholarly disciplines of ethnology, anthropology, social p…

Devil

(8,622 words)

Author(s): Felber, Annelies | Hutter, Manfred | Achenbach, Reinhard | Aune, David E. | Lang, Bernhard | Et al.
[German Version] I. Names and Terms – II. Religious Studies – III. Ancient Near East and Old Testament – IV. New Testament – V. Church History – VI. Philosophy of Religion – VII. Fundamental Theology – VIII. Dogmatics – IX. Judaism – X. Islam – XI. History of Art and Literature I. Names and Terms 1. Devil The secular Greek noun διάβολος/ diabolos comes from one of the meanings of the verb διαβάλλω/ diaballō, “separate, sever,” which led to meanings such as “accuse, slander, deceive.” From the Greek noun came Latin diabolus, from which the English “devil” derives. In the Septuagint (LXX), the Heb. שָׂטָן/ satan is translated diabolos, which is best rendered as “adversary.” In the Apocrypha, both devil ( 3 Bar. 4:8; As. Mos.

Proverb

(438 words)

Author(s): Lang, Bernhard
[German Version] Proverbs and proverbial expressions are found in all languages and cultures, and often represent international material. The traditional appreciation of proverbs is based on the observation that they preserve the ethos of “ordinary people,” whose values, informed by common sense, coalesce in a “simple morality” (Bollnow) of decency, industry, frugality, and respect for age and authority. In the Golden Rule this ethos has its measure, in proverbs its collective archives. The devil …

Elephantine

(262 words)

Author(s): Lang, Bernhard
[German Version] The small island situated near the modern Asswan in the Nile, called Elephantine by the Greeks, marks the southern boundary of ancient Egypt. Ezekiel 29:10 mentions it by the name Syene (Heb. seweneh). Today, two Nubian villages and an extended, partially excavated area with ancient Egyptian structures and an archeological museum, can be found on the island. It has been the site of German and French excavations (1906–1911), and German and Sw…

Hell

(5,978 words)

Author(s): Auffarth, Christoph | Houtman, Cornelis | Frankemölle, Hubert | Lang, Bernhard | Sparn, Walter | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Old Testament – III. New Testament – IV. Church History – V. Dogmatics – VI. Judaism – VII. Islam – VIII. Buddhism – IX. Contemporary Art …

Heaven

(3,990 words)

Author(s): Auffarth, Christoph | Houtman, Cornelis | Rowland, Christopher | Lang, Bernhard | Farrow, Douglas B. | Et al.
[German Version] Cosmology and Kingdom of God I. Religious Studies – II. Old Testament –III. New Testament – IV. Church History – V. Dogmatics – VI. Contemporary Art I. Religious Studies 1. To a vision that has…

Rituals of Movement

(591 words)

Author(s): Lang, Bernhard
[German Version] may be divided into three types: dance, procession, and perambulation. The central feature of dance is movement of the human body, whereby the body may function as a single whole, or, as in Africa, different parts of the body may execute quasi-autonomous movements. Dance may carry a wide variety of religious meanings; they range from entertaining the Egyptian goddess Hathor and bacchantic frenzy to inducing ecstasy, which may lead to possession …