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This is a psychological and historical exploration of belief in a spirit world, imperceptible to the senses, as a pervasive and deeply-rooted characteristic of religion.
Belief in a spirit world, and a blissful or agonizing afterlife, is one of the most pervasive and deeply-rooted characteristics of religion. This volume offers a wide-ranging exploration of this basic religious theme. Most of the case studies are drawn from Jewish and Christian tradition, providing in-depth coverage of Judaism and Christianity from late Antiquity through the Medieval period. There are also examples from Islamic, Japanese, and Chinese traditions for a comparative perspective with Western traditions.
Several chapters deal with the formative period of Jewish and Christian apocalypticism, which is concerned not only with the end of the physical world but also with the eternal heavenly world. These chapters are also important for illustrating the development of mysticism in Western traditions.
The most distinctive aspect of this book is that it does not deal with antiquity alone, but juxtaposes the historical essays with a survey of modern day, near-death experiences. It raises issues of fundamental importance for the psychology of religion as well as for its history
The most distinctive aspect of this book is that it does not deal with antiquity alone, but juxtaposes the historical essays with a survey of modern day, near-death experiences. It raises issues of fundamental importance for the psychology of religion as well as for its history.
|Publisher:||State University of New York Press|
|Sold by:||Barnes & Noble|
|File size:||2 MB|
About the Author
John J. Collins is Professor of Hebrew Bible and Post-biblical Judaism at the University of Chicago. His books include Between Athens and Jerusalem: Jewish Identity in the Hellenistic Diaspora; The Apocalyptic Imagination; and The Scepter and the Star: Messianism in the Light of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Michael Fishbane is Nathan Cummings Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Chicago, where he is also Chair of the programs in Jewish Studies. He is the author or editor of 10 other books.
Table of Contents
Chapter 1 Wisdom's Place
Jonathan Z. Smith
Chapter 2 Ascent to the Stars in a Mesopotamian Ritual:Social Metaphor and Religious Experience
Chapter 3 A Throne in the Heavens: Apotheosis in Pre-Christian Judaism
John J. Collins
Chapter 4 The Seven Heavens in Jewish and Christian Apocalypses
Adela Y. Collins
Chapter 5 Paul and the Beginning of Jewish Mysticism
Alan F. Segal
Chapter 6 The Practice of Ascent in the Ancient Mediterranean World
Chapter 7 Mystical Descents
Guy G. Stroumsa
The Crown of Immortality: Toward a Redescription of Christian Martyrdom
Arthur J. Droge
Chapter 9 Abathur, A New Etymology
Chapter 10 The Imagination of Death in Spirituality Jewish
Chapter 11 Weeping, Death, and Spiritual Ascent in Sixteenth Century Jewish Mysticism
Elliot R. Wolfson
Chapter 12 Between Authority and Indeterminacy: Some Reflections on Kabbalistic Hermeneutics
Chapter 13 Hekhalot and Mi’raj:Observations on the Heavenly Journey in Judaism and Islam
David J. Halperin
Chapter 14 The Role of the "Anima Mundi" as Mediator Between the Divine and Created Realms in the Twelfth Century
Chapter 15 Death and the Distribution of Sacral Power in Early Japanese Mythistory
Gary L. Ebersole
Chapter 16 To Hell and Back: Death, Near-Death and Other Worldly Journeys in Early Medieval China
Robert Ford Campany
Chapter 17 Sir Henry Vane: Mystical Piety in the Puritan Revolution
W. Clark Gilpin
Chapter 18 Death, and Near-Death Today
Biblical References Index
Nonbiblical Authors and Works Index
Modern Authors Index