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Stephen Strehle

Stephen Strehle is a leading scholar of church/state issues. In this volume, he focuses his rigorous historical analysis and philosophical acumen upon a topic of great interest today and source of cultural wars around the globe—the process of secularization. The book starts with a discussion of early capitalism and how it saw the real world functioning well-enough on its own principles of individual struggle and self-interest, without needing religious or moral principles to meddle in its affairs and eventually dispelling the need for any intelligent design or providential orchestration of life through the work of Darwin. The book then discusses the growth of the secular point of view: how historians dismissed the impact of religion in developing modern culture, how scientists conceived of the universe running on self-sufficient or mechanistic principles, and how people no longer looked to the providential hand of God to explain their suffering. The book ends with a discussion of how the Deist concept of human autonomy became a political policy in America through Jefferson’s concept of a wall of separation between church and state and how the US Supreme Court proceeded to dismiss the importance of religion in shaping or justifying the values of the nation and its laws. The book is accessible to most upper-level and graduate students in a wide-variety of disciplines, keeping technical and foreign words to a minimum and leaving scholarly details or debates to its extensive notes.

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Die Religiöse Stiftung im Islam (waqf) nach hanafitischer Lehre

Die stiftungsrechtliche Kodifikation von Qadrî Pâshâ


Hans-Georg Ebert

Der ägyptische Jurist Muhammad Qadrî Pâshâ (gest. 1886) erstellte Ende des 19. Jh. nach den Kodifikationen zum islamischen Familienrecht und zum islamischen Zivilrecht auch eine solche zum Recht der Religiösen Stiftung (waqf) auf hanafitischer Grundlage. Er orientierte sich dabei vor allem an den klassischen islamischen Rechtswerken und Fatwâ-Sammlungen. Nach dem Muster europäischer Gesetzeswerke untergliederte der Autor das Sachgebiet in einzelne Kapitel und Abschnitte. Damit schuf er ein wichtiges Referenzwerk, welches nach seinem Tode erstmals 1894 in Kairo im Druck erschien. Qadrî Pâshâ nutzte verschiedene Methoden der hanafitischen Lehre, um den Rechtstext an die existierenden gesellschaftlichen Bedingungen und Herausforderungen anzupassen. Die in der Folgezeit veröffentlichten Gesetze der arabischen Länder zur Religiösen Stiftung konnten auf den Text zurückgreifen. Dabei ging und geht es vor allem um eine zeitgemäße Verwaltung und gewinnbringende Nutzung von gestifteten Immobilien. Die kommentierte Übersetzung folgt dem arabischen Original.

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Yil Song

This book pays special attention to the hermeneutical location where the fig-tree story appears in Mark 11; it is situated between Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem and his "Temple incident" in Mark 11. The fig-tree story plays a pivotal role in understanding the stories immediatlely preceding and following it. It reverses the mode of Jesus’ entry from being triumphal to untriumphal, and convinces the first Markan readers to feel at ease in confronting Jesus’ outrage in the Temple. The way in which Jesus entered Jerusalem contradicts the common description of the entry as a triumphant one. Additionally, the story finds a proper solution to the problem of Jesus’ actions in the Temple being shockingly in contrast to his overall character as revealed through the Markan Gospel.

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Orthodox Christianity and Human Rights in Europe

A Dialogue Between Theological Paradigms and Socio-Legal Pragmatics



This collective book aims at examining in what terms, and to what extent, the "reception" of the Human Rights doctrine takes place in Eastern Orthodox countries, as well as in the Orthodox diaspora. A series of questions are raised regarding the resources and theological structures that are mobilized in the overall Human Rights’ debate and controversy, the theological "interpretation" of Human Rights within the Eastern Orthodox spiritual tradition, and the similarities and/or divergences of this "interpretation", compared to the other Christian confessions. Special attention is given to the various Orthodox actors on the international arena, aside the national Orthodox churches, which participate in the Ecumenical dialogue, as well as the dialogue with the European and international institutions.

Religious freedom, as a fundamental Human right, guaranteed by the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR), constitutes a key-issue that contributes to broadening the reflections on the overall Human Rights-related problematic between East and West, by shading light on the more complex issue pertaining to the conceptualization and implementation of Human Rights in countries belonging to the Eastern Orthodox tradition.

The present volume studies the diversity that characterizes the Orthodox theological traditions and interpretations regarding Human Rights, not only in terms of an "external", or a "strategical" approach of socio-political and ecclesial nature, but also through a reflexive analysis of theological discourses.

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Claudia Hoffmann

Diese missionsgeschichtliche Studie gibt Einblick in die konfliktreiche Zeit der 1930er-Jahre und zeigt die Theologieproduktion eines abgelegenen Missionsfeldes. Das komplexe Ritual der Sekundärbestattung der Ngaju Dayak in Mittelkalimantan, Indonesien, steht im Zentrum der Untersuchung. Die Autorin ergänzt die ethnographische und ritualtheoretische Herangehensweise durch Analysen von Archivalien der Basler Mission. Eine zentrale Rolle spielen dabei Fotografien, deren Beachtung in interkultureller Theologie an Bedeutung gewinnt. Das Buch bettet die Analyse-Ergebnisse in den theologischen und religionswissenschaftlichen Deutungsrahmen der 1930er-Jahre ein und erfasst die Verschiebungen in der theologischen Denkweise der Missionare mit dem Begriff der Kontakttheologie.

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Nicholas Rescher

Philosophical Pragmatism in Context looks at human affairs and the condition of man from a purposive point of view. From this point of view it is a centrally significant feature of man that we humans are creatures possessing preferences, desires, wants, and—above all—needs. The possession of people’s wants and needs is clearly a factual issue. What my needs are—what I require in order to have a healthy, happy, and rewarding life—is part and parcel of the conditions that define me as the sort of being that I am. Both what people happen to desire and what it is that they require of a healthy, happy, communally productive life—one that engenders satisfaction to themselves and enlists the appropriation (and even admiration) of their fellows—is clearly something factual, something that can be determined by observation. Furthermore, it is something objective—people do not choose what it is that they need; rather, this is something that is determined for them by their mode of emplacement in the world’s scheme of things.

For pragmatism, these requisites pervade the whole domain of human activity, and the issue of whether our modus operandi achieves these goals is pivotal. The pragmatic approach to validation is thus diversified in its efficacy, and it is the aim of this book to expound and illustrate its merits. Both teachers and students of philosophy will find material of interest in the author’s normative and original point of view.

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To Whom Belongs the Land?

Leviticus 25 in an African Liberationist Reading


Ndikho Mtshiselwa

The main question of this book, which focuses on the role of the Old Testament in the South African context, is: If reread from an African liberationist perspective in the context of land redistribution and socio-economic justice in South Africa, could the Israelite Jubilee legislation in Leviticus 25:8–55 offer liberating and empowering possibilities for the poor in South Africa? The exegesis of Leviticus 25:8–55 in which the historical-critical method is employed lays the foundation for the contextualisation of the issues arising from the exegesis. Furthermore, within the African liberationist framework, the South African context serves as a lens to interpret Leviticus 25:8–55. The striking parallels between the contexts from which the text of Leviticus 25:8–55 emerged and the context of the modern reader of the Bible in South Africa are shown. In the end, it is argued that when re-read from an African liberationist perspective and in the context of the land redistribution and socio-economic justice discourse, Leviticus 25:8–55 can contribute positively to the redress of inequality and consequently to poverty alleviation in South Africa.

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Learning from Decay

Essays on the Aesthetics of Architectural Dereliction and Its Consumption

Max Ryynänen and Zoltan Somhegyi

Architectural decay as well as the reasons, effects, appearance and representation of ruination have always been important sources of understanding the state of our culture. The essays in this co-written book offer broad perspectives on the potential of ruins, on the use and appropriation of derelict architecture and on the aesthetics and also touristification of places by analysing a variety of phenomena in the range from classical to fake ruins, from historic city centres to hot dog stands, from debris to theme parks. The survey travels from Tallin through Venice and Istanbul to Beirut, discussing among others actual spaces, allegorical monuments and nostalgic aestheticisations of the past in high and popular culture, thus showing numerous inspiring opportunities of learning from decay.

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Dios de repente

Análisis filológico y fenomenológico de los testimonios de conversión de Paul Claudel, André Frossard y Manuel García Morente

José María Contreras Espuny

En este estudio se ahonda en tres testimonios autógrafos de conversión súbita al catolicismo en el siglo XX: Paul Claudel, Manuel García Morente y André Frossard. Se abre el libro con un primer apartado donde se describe el esquema fenomenológico que despliega este tipo de experiencias para, acto seguido, abrir el debate filológico sobre la naturaleza de estos textos y su relación dentro del género autobiográfico. En el sentido filosófico y teológico, se rastrean los antecedentes en las distintas experiencias místicas y se resaltan los paralelismos con casos clásicos, como serían los de San Pablo de Tarso y San Agustín de Hipona. En el sentido filológico, se plantea la posibilidad de un subgénero dada la idiosincrasia particular que narrativamente configuran los tres escritos. Posteriormente, se procede al análisis pormenorizado de cada uno de los testimonios, tendiendo puentes comparativos que nos ayuden a ponderar las particularidades personales, filosóficas y filológicas de la experiencia y de los escritos que las describen.

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Number, Word, and Spirit

Rethinking T. F. Torrance’s Theological Science From a Pneumatological Perspective

Aaron Yom

This book contributes to the study of Thomas F. Torrance by promoting his realist agenda, and the same time, expanding his program that takes into consideration a well-nuanced pentecostal spirituality. More specifically, it assesses the foundational methodological framework of Torrance’s scientific approach to theology for the purpose of constructing a triadic methodological structure for theological science. In doing so, it not only recognizes Torrance’s efforts to bridge the gap between science (number), word (hermeneutics), and spirit (theo-philosophy), but also critically reviews his theo-scientific project by identifying his restrictive tendencies that limit the full outworking of human spirituality and imagination. Based upon this analysis, this study constructively modifies Torrance’s theological science by complementing his realist agenda with the pentecostally driven pneumatological imagination. In the final analysis, Number, Word, and Spirit argues that theological science grounded on the pneumatological imagination can expand the restrictive tendencies of Torrance’s theo-scientific project, thereby giving rise to a triadic analogical approach that recognizes the interplay of ontologic, informal logic, and translogic for the development of a theo-scientific method. The book can be used as a secondary reading material for the courses in theological method, interdisciplinary studies, and faith and science dialogue.