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Death

(11,861 words)

Author(s): Heller, Birgit | Cancik, Hubert | Liess, Kathrin | Necker, Gerold | Goldberg, Sylvie-Anne | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies and History of Religions – II. Death and the Realm of the Dead in the Old Testament – III. Judaism – IV. New Testament – V. Philosophy – VI. Philosophy of Religion – VII. History of Dogma and Dogmatics – VIII. Ethics – IX. Practical Theology – X. Art – XI. Islam – XII. Buddhism – XIII. Hinduism I. Religious Studies and History of Religions 1. General Modern religious criticism regards religion as compensation for human anxiety in the face of death. …

Retribution

(4,477 words)

Author(s): Neu, Rainer | Janowski, Bernd | Bendemann, Reinhard v. | Volkmann, Stefan | Buß, Johanna
[German Version] I. Religious Studies Retribution – recompense of good with good and evil with evil, in religion as reward (Payment) or punishment for human conduct, imposed in this life or the next by God or fate – is an aspect of reciprocity, the principle of quid pro quo (Merit). Richard Thurnwald was the first to point out the significance of reciprocity for social action and worldview in ethnic societies. It goes beyond reciprocating with a gift or assistance, or exchanging daughters between exogamous groups; the moral, legal, and religi…

Saṃsāra

(318 words)

Author(s): Buß, Johanna
[German Version] In post-Vedic Indian religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism) and philosophical schools (except Ājīvika and Cārvāka), saṃsāra (Sanskrit, Pāli, Prākrit “wandering,” “cycle of rebirth,” “cycle of existence”) denotes the endless alternation of death (XII; XIII) and rebirth (Regeneration: III; IV) to which the unredeemed individual soul is subject (Hinduism, ¶ Jainism). In Buddhism saṃsāra does not refer to transmigration of a spiritual or psychic substrate but to the perpetual alternation between death and new birth, brought about b…

Soul

(8,968 words)

Author(s): Hoheisel, Karl | Seebass, Horst | Gödde, Susanne | Necker, Gerold | Rudolph, Ulrich | Et al.
[German Version] I. Religious Studies 1. Phenomenology Western, Christian connotations of the concept of the soul, imposed on the religio-historical evidence by outside studies, must be generally excluded if the soul is understood as the principle of manifestations of life that are perceptible (or culturally considered to be perceptible), although they are rarely categorized under a common umbrella term. It is therefore reasonable to speak of a multiplicity of souls – for example four among the Ob-Ugrians (Hasenfratz, Einführung, 38–41), five among the Proto-Germanic peoples ( ib…