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David Allen Harvey

Classical polytheism or “paganism” presented a challenge to the Philhellenes of the Enlightenment, who found it difficult to accept that the greatest minds of antiquity had been taken in by (vide Fontenelle) “a heap of chimeras, delusions, and absurdities.” Rejecting the claim that “paganism” was a deformation of the “natural religion” of the early Hebrew patriarchs, several Enlightenment thinkers developed theories of classical polytheism, presenting it as the apotheosis of the great kings and heroes of the first ages of man, a system of allegorical symbols that conveyed timeless truths, and the effort of a prescientific mentality to understand the hidden forces of nature. Although divergent in their interpretations of “paganism,” these theories converged by separating its origins from Judeo-Christian traditions and presenting religion as an essentially human creation. Thus, Enlightenment theories of classical mythology contributed to the emergence of the more cosmopolitan and tolerant spirit that characterized the age.

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Why Does God Get It Wrong?

Divine Fallibility in Athens and Jerusalem

Gabriel Kanter Webber

other. As polytheists, the Ancient Greeks had a huge mythographical advantage over the rabbis, because polytheism has a built-in way of incorporating the fallibility on which three-dimensional deity characterisation relies: Greek gods could show

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Intuiting Gods

Creed and Cognition in the Fourth Century

Marilyn Dunn

Combining history, theology, and the cognitive study of religion, this article offers a new interpretation of the origins and purpose of the fourth-century Trinitarian theology known as Homoianism, suggesting that it aimed to create an “entry-level“ Christianity as a first step in gradually easing polytheists into Christianity. It highlights the polemical nature of Homoianism's characterization as “Arianism,“ and examines the beliefs of Homoianism's proponents, including those of Ulfila, the “apostle of the Goths.“ This article suggests that the Homoian view of the Trinity attempted to map non-Christian intuitions of divinity onto the Christian doctrine of God. It points to Homoianism's Western origins on the Roman Empire's strategically important Danubian frontier, arguing that a Homoian creed should be seen not only in the wider context of the “Arian Controversy,“ but also as part of attempts to ensure the peaceful Romanization of the Goths.

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The Concept of Religion in Meiji Popular Discourse

An Analysis of the Newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun

Makoto Harris Takao

definition of their practices as constituting “religion,” claiming that the moral mindset of ancestral worship ( sosen sūhai , 祖先崇拝) had been confused for legitimate elements of shūkyō . 65 The author thus defines Shinto as a form of “polytheism

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Renaissance of the New Right in Germany?

A Discussion of New Right Elements in German Right-wing Extremism Today

Samuel Salzborn

hierarchical lines, but also involves a strong turn towards religious concerns. This extends from Christian and/or fundamentalist agendas and in particular to (neo) heathen, nature-centric, and/or Germanic polytheism in a “quest for a new religion of politics

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Wiping away the Tears of the Ocean

Ukusulaizinyembezizolwandle

Mogobe Ramose

theology’ so clearly suggests. It cultivates problems of absolutism as, for example, three religions claim to be better just because they are monotheistic. They have rejected polytheism and invented paganism and invoked ‘superstition’ as the despicable

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Timo Pankakoski and Antto Vihma

fragmentation have emerged to describe modernity. Max Weber perceived modernity in terms of rationalization, disenchantment, and secularization and juxtaposed traditional authority with the modern “polytheism” of values. 81 Many of his categories found their