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Ethics of Conviction

(421 words)

Author(s): Stock, Konrad
[German Version] The term ethics of conviction refers to a form of ethos or an ethical theory and occurs as such in M. Weber's theory of the evolution of ethical positions that leads from the legal ethics of scholastic natural law to the Reformation's ethics of conviction and thence to the Enlightenment's ethics of responsibility. In a certain tension …

Pain

(743 words)

Author(s): Stock, Konrad
[German Version] Within the semantic field of the different modes of experiencing harm or ill-being, pain refers first of all to the sensation felt by the injured, sick, or unsound body (Suffering, Sickness and healing), but then also, and especially in poetic language, to the experiencing of separation, mourning and grief, and compassion ( Welt-Schmerz [v. Hartmann]). I. The history of pain research since J. Müller ( Handbuch der Physiologie des Menschen, vol. II, 1840; cf. N. Grahek, “Schmerz III. Naturwissenschaft und Medizin,” HWP VIII, 1323–1330) has shown that pain repre…

Self-love

(719 words)

Author(s): Stock, Konrad
[German Version] In Aristotle’s ethical theory, friendly benevolence is a particular manifestation of self-love ( philautia) as an ontological principle, so that what exists affirms itself in its existence ( Eth. Nic. 9, 1168a, 4–6). The Synoptic tradition, following Lev 19:18 (cf. Mathys), glossed self-love with the commandment of love of one’s neighbor, which together with love of God (Love of/for God) epitomizes the binding will of God the Creator (Matt 22:34–40 parr.). Following Augustine of Hippo, theological exegesis of…

Virtues

(1,820 words)

Author(s): Stock, Konrad
[German Version] Systematic treatment of virtue (Gk ἀρετή/ aretḗ; Lat. virtus) goes back to Plato and Aristotle, who built on Socrates (Krämer); it was further advanced by the Stoics. It is based on the conviction that the good life consists in focusing on happiness through attainment of a highest good. Therefore the classical versions of virtue ethics always combined theoretical and practical elements. According to Plato, insight into the categorial uniqueness of the idea of the good vis-à-vis all possible goods, which results from knowledge of what truly has being, gro…

Desire/Lack of Desire

(998 words)

Author(s): Stock, Konrad
[German Version] The dichotomy of “desire” versus “lack of desire” refers to the central moment in the experience of the present (Religious experience), namely the essentially affective (Affect) determination of true volition as realized in decisions. The specific ¶ character of this moment is difficult to determine for two reasons. On the one hand, the theoretical clarification of the phenomenon is intimately related to the notion of the moral autono…

Vices

(1,940 words)

Author(s): Stock, Konrad
[German Version] I. The Concept As the antonym of virtue (Gk ἀρετή/ aretḗ, Lat. virtus), vice (Gk κακία/ kakía, Lat. nequitia, vitium) is a categorical concept for morally problematic or reprehensible behaviors (Habit), thus for negative aspects of individual capacity for action which Christian reli-¶ gious language characterizes as root or chief sins. The linguistic history of many cultures has yielded this concept, because a person’s self-awareness knows the difference between individual actions or chains of action and the habitual aspec…

Striving

(810 words)

Author(s): Stock, Konrad
[German Version] The term striving (Gk hormḗ, órexis; Lat. inclinatio, appetitus, conatus) denotes a fundamental concept of ethics (see esp. Trappe); its phenomenal illumination is always conditioned by insights of fundamental anthropology (theory of personhood). From the perspective of Christian dogmatics, it denotes a “being after” or “pursuing” a “for-the-sake-of-which,” an end or set of ends that is determined by certainty of a highest good; it is the basis of all sustained self-activity on the ¶ part of individual or social actors. Attainment of this end means happ…

Convictions

(990 words)

Author(s): Stock, Konrad
[German Version] As a basic notion of fundamental ethics, “conviction(s)” (Ger. Gesinnung) is one of the key concepts of a specific theory of morality (Morality and immorality). It denotes the enduring and persevering quality of an emotional or volitional urge to attain an envisaged good (cf. Rom 8:5; Phil 2:5; 3:19) – in other words, the intentionality (Intention/Intentionality) that inspires a person or community of persons. The more precise definition of its content a…

Virtue Ethics

(180 words)

Author(s): Stock, Konrad
[German Version] The word virtue denotes the epitome of moral powers that enable persons to shape their common living present through their own actions in the face of adversity, sickness, injustice, and guilt. Its opposite is vice. An adequate presentation of the phenomenon of virtue (Virtues) results from an overall ethical theory conceived neither as an ethics of duty (I. Kant) nor as virtue ethics in the strict sense but as an ethics of goods that integrates the perspectives of both duty and virt…

Self-love of God

(594 words)

Author(s): Stock, Konrad
[German Version] The notion of God’s self-love is a contingent implication (not a necessary implication) of the doctrine of the Trinity (Trinity/Doctrine of the Trinity); it seeks to understand the relationship between the Father and the Son in salvation history – the Son’s surrender of his life as “abiding” in the Father’s love (John 15:9ff.) – as the basis of our knowledge of God’s immanent being as love (1 John 4:16). In the history of the doctrine of the Trinity, God’s self-love was developed as a corollary of the recognition of love (III) as the essential qual…

Habit (Custom)

(855 words)

Author(s): Slenczka, Notger | Stock, Konrad
[German Version] I. Dogmatics – II. Ethics I. Dogmatics Aristotle used the term ἕξις/ héxis (Lat. habitus) to describe the basic condition for people (and not merely their actions) to be ethically qualified, if humans are inherently able to regularly and willingly limit their affects in life's basic situations to the right, situation-appropriate degree (cf. Eth. Nic. II, 3 and 4 [1105a 17–1106a 13]). The regularity of right conduct, for instance, which permits a person to be described as “righteous” refers to a habit or disposition acquired through…

Hope

(3,497 words)

Author(s): Bietenhard, Hans | Stock, Konrad | Lochman, Jan Milič
1. The Bible 1.1. Usage The biblical vocabulary of hope includes also important terms that are rendered “expect,” “wait,” “trust,” and “rely.” 1.2. OT Eccl. 9:4 states a general truth in saying that “whoever is joined with all the living has hope.” What is hoped for is something positive (e.g., marriage and children, Ruth 1:9, 12). Hope can be disappointed, such as that of the owner of the vineyard in Isa. 5:2, 4, 7. Those who suffer can be without hope or have only a distant object of hope (Job 6:19–20); they can complain to God, who has “uprooted” their hope (Job 19:10). Hope reaches only up …

Religious Experience

(2,499 words)

Author(s): von Brück, Michael | Sparn, Walter | Stock, Konrad
[German Version] I. Religious Studies Experience is a process occurring directly in the conscious mind, whereby the perceiving subject and internal as well as external objects of the conscious mind link up to form an experience, representing a separate category, which is connected episodically with the moment in which a particular perception occurs. (Religious) experience (Ger. Erlebnis) is the subjective perception of an experience (Ger. Erfahrung). An experience is participation in an event; the accumulation of experiences generates knowledge. An event is c…

Emotions

(926 words)

Author(s): McIntosh, Daniel N. | Stock, Konrad
[German Version] I. Psychology – II. Science of Religions and Philosophy of Religion – III. Ethics I. Psychology In clinical psychology programmatic psychological research of emotions has only recently started to gain significance. Emotions are regarded as functional, adaptive processes that allow people to respond quickly and appropriately to relevant environmental changes. Emotions motivate and …

Eros

(1,954 words)

Author(s): Konstan, David | Stock, Konrad | Figal, Günter
[German Version] I. The Term – II. Eros and Amor – III. Eros and Agape ( Caritas) – IV. Eros in Philosophy I. The Term The Greek term ἔρως/ éros, noun, verb ἐρᾶν/ erā́n (“to be in love with”), denotes an intense affection or desire. It can express a passion for an inanimate object, such as wine or one's city, or even for wisdom, as in Plato. However, eros is commonly associated with er…

Blessedness

(3,118 words)

Author(s): Horyna, Břetislav | Steinmann, Michael | Stock, Konrad
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Philosophy – III. History of Dogma – IV. Ethics I. Religious Studies Blessedness is the goal of eudaemonist ethics (Eudaemonia; Eudaemonism) oriented toward well-being and a successful life, toward the optimal condition of an individual; earlier usage often referred to this condition as “happiness, bliss” (Happiness: I), the direct religious implication of this …

Alienation

(1,490 words)

Author(s): Zenkert, Georg | Sparn, Walter | Stock, Konrad | Dober, Hans Martin
[German Version] I. Philosophy - II. Dogmatics - III. Ethics - IV. Practical Theology I. Philosophy The term “alienation,” made particularly prominent through the influence of Marxist literature, takes its philosophical sense from the work of G.W.F. Hegel. Etymologically, it derives from Lat. alienatio and Gk. ἀλλοτρίωσις/ allotriōsis. Besides “estrangement” in general, it can also denote a legal transfer of title (Aristotle, Rhet. 1361 a 22). The term occurs in various contexts in Christian theology, denoting both …

Experience

(3,622 words)

Author(s): Willaschek, Marcus | Stock, Konrad | Köpf, Ulrich | Loder, James E.
[German Version] I. Philosophy – II. Philosophy of Religion – III. Church History – IV. Fundamental Theology – V. Dogmatics – VI. Ethics – VII. Practical Theology I. Philosophy In a broad sense shaped by daily life in the world, “experience” has been understood since Aristotle ( Metaph. 980b28–982a3) as a kind of knowledge of reality that rests on practical contact and is related to paradigmatic individual cases (Gk ἐμπειρία/ empeiría; Lat. experientia). It does not, therefore, lead to systematic knowledge but remains “knowledge of…

Sensuality

(1,613 words)

Author(s): Fricke, Christel | Rosenau, Hartmut | Sparn, Walter | Stock, Konrad
[German Version] I. Philosophy Sensuality is a collective term for various human faculties that mediate sensations. Sensations are mental states. In contrast to abstract thoughts, memories, and fantasies, sensations are qualitatively dependent on the present state of the sensate person. It is traditional to distinguish between perceptual sensations and affective sensations. Sensations function as information, making it possible for us to react appropriately to our environment, have an idea of it, an…

Phenomenology

(3,265 words)

Author(s): Gander, Hans-Helmuth | Adriaanse, Hendrik Johan | Stock, Konrad
[German Version] I. Philosophy Historically, the term phenomenology has been used in various different ways. It is first found in the Novum Organon (1764) of Johann Heinrich Lambert. Here phenomenology studies appearance, in order to clarify its influence on the correctness or falsehood of human cognition, and to overcome this influence in the interests of truth. The term phenomenology was passed on in this sense by J.G. Herder, I. Kant, and J.G. Fichte, among others. The term became widely known only through G.W.F. Hegel’s Phänomenologie des Geistes (1807; ET: Phenomenology of Mind).…

Feeling

(1,869 words)

Author(s): Recki, Birgit | Sarot, Marcel | Stock, Konrad | Schreiner, Martin
[German Version] I. Philosophy – II. Philosophy of Religion – III. Fundamental Theology – IV. Dogmatics – V. Ethics – VI. Practical Theology and Psychology of Religion I. Philosophy Feeling or sense (Lat. sensus, Fr. sentiment, Ger. Gefühl) is the direct sensate awareness of an inward state, in which a unique access to reality is articulated. Until well into the modern era, the term encompassed without distinction both sensory perceptions and emotions (affects, passions, moods). During the 18th century, feeling came to be defined more precisely in its cognitive, expressive-¶ ev…

Divine Judgment

(4,102 words)

Author(s): Hjelde, Sigurd | Janowski, Bernd | Necker, Gerold | Zager, Werner | Stock, Konrad
[German Version] I. Religious Studies – II. Old Testament – III. Early Judaism – IV. New Testament – V. Dogmatics I. Religious Studies 1. The judgment discussed here is not in response to a specific transgression or lapse on the part of an individual; it is a judgment upon his or her entire life, taking place only after death and determining the fate of the ¶ deceased in the next world. Because this notion implies the idea of a just recompense, it has the quality and function of a theodicy that seeks…

Politics

(7,247 words)

Author(s): Herms, Eilert | Hutter, Manfred | Schieder, Rolf | Thiemann, Ronald | Badry, Roswitha | Et al.
[German Version] I. Social Sciences Since its Greek origins, politics has meant (a) an action with a specific object, aiming to achieve the best way for all the inhabitants of the ancient city-state ( pólis) to live together and hence achieve the common good of the ¶ community ( koinón), and (b) the theory of this action (Sellin; see also Political science). Given that we no longer live in small urban societies but in large, open, and functionally complex societies (Society), politics includes – but cannot be limited to – the system of state g…

Love of/for God

(5,381 words)

Author(s): Schmitt, Hans-Christoph | Morgen, Michèle | Stock, Konrad | Avemarie, Friedrich | Necker, Gerold | Et al.
[German Version] I. Old Testament – II. New Testament – III. Christianity – IV. Judaism – V. Islam I. Old Testament 1. God's love The notion of YHWH's love (in Heb. primarily derivatives of the root אהב/ ʾhb) for his people first appears in the book of the prophet Hosea, where God's love is cited as the “ground of divine election” (Jenni) in response to challenges to the election (I) of Israel by God (Hos 1:9). Hosea uses the image of a father's love (11:1; cf. also 11:4); despite his son's disobedience, he cannot give him up …

Love

(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…
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