archiman


Fr Pavel Stefanov, Shoumen University, Bulgaria


ПЪРВА НЕДЕЛЯ СЛЕД ПЕТДЕСЕТНИЦА - НА ВСИЧКИ СВЕТИИ
archiman
В предишната неделя ние празнувахме рождения ден на Христовата Църква - Петдесетница, а днес ние честваме нейните две части, които образуват едно неразделно цяло. Днес земната Църква прославя небесната. Днес ние - обременени от грехове, но надяващи се на спасение – възпяваме „тия, за които светът не беше достоен.., които чрез вяра победиха царства, вършиха правда, получиха обещания, затулиха уста на лъвове, угасиха огнена сила, избягнаха острието на меча, от немощни станаха крепки, бидоха силни на война, обърнаха на бяг чужди пълчища...” (Евр. 11:38,33-34).

Дали почитането на светците отнема от величието на Бога, както някои напразно ни обвиняват? Съвсем не! Ние, православните, сме верни на учението и заповедите на Господ Иисус Христос и Неговите св. апостоли. Ние почитаме светците като верни приятели и раби на Бога, защото те представляват „храм Духа Светаго” (1 Кор. 6:19). Ние се прекланяме пред техните чутовни дела и подвизи, извършени от тях за Божията слава и с помощта на Божията благодат. Честта, която въздаваме на светците, всъщност се отнася към Бога. Затова църковното песнопение възкликва: „Дивен Бог во светих Своих!”

Христос потвърждава Мойсеевия закон: „Господу, Богу твоему, ще се поклониш и Нему единому ще служиш” (Мат. 4:10), като казва: „Вие сте Мои приятели, ако вършите всичко онова, що Ви Аз заповядвам” (Йоан 15:14). Спасителят засвидетелства пред тях: „Който приема вас, Мене приема, а който приема Мене, приема Тогова, Който Ме е пратил” (Мат. 10:40). С това Той показва, че честта, отдавана на Неговите верни раби, се отнася към Самия Него и към Бог Отец. Затова ние прославяме светците и ги призоваваме в молитва като спасени души, на които Христос е дал силата да ходатайстват за нас.

Още в Стария Завет срещаме молитва към на светците. Св. цар Давид призовава Бога с думите: „Господи, Боже на Авраама, Исаака и Израиля, нашите отци!” (1 Пар. 29:18). Христовият апостол св. Яков нарежда на вярващите да се молят един за друг и добавя: „Голяма сила има усърдната молитва на праведника” (5:16). Ап. Петър обещава на своите последователи да се грижи за тях и след смъртта (1 Петр. 1:15). В Апокалипсиса св. Йоан Богослов засвидетелства как светците на небето възнасят молитвите си пред Агнеца Божи, имайки попечение за своите духовни чеда от земната Църква (Откр. 5:8, 8:3-4). Като се позовава на Свещ. Писание и предание, Православната църква винаги е учила да се призовават светците с пълна увереност в тяхното ходатайство за нас пред Бога.

В историята на Църквата са засвидетелствани шест вида светци и светици: апостоли, мъченици, пророци, йерарси (епископи), преподобни и праведници. Никой от нас няма да бъде апостол по простата причина, че не живее през І век. Малцина са призвани да станат пророци и йерарси. Още по-малцина ще станат преподобни монаси, което е голям подвиг. Но повечето от нас трябва да влязат в редиците на праведниците – миряни и свещеници, призвани да постигнат святост в света, който „лежи в злото” (1 Йоан 5:19).

Светците са великите учители и духовните водачи на човечеството. Всеки, който обича книгата, знае как при съприкосновение със задълбочените мисли или вдъхновените стихове на класиците в нас се пораждат собствени светли мисли, чувства и желания. Затова ние трябва не само да поддържаме духовна връзка чрез молитва с гигантите от християнското минало, но и да се задълбочаваме в изучаването на техните жития и произведения. Вярващите родители следва редовно да да се молят и да четат Библията и житията заедно с децата си, а не да ги оставят на влиянието на телевизията, Интернет и улицата. По този начин прекрасните добродетели на светците ще бъдат леко усвоени като примери за подражание, които ще изградят от нашите деца истински християни и предани родолюбци.



ПОДКРЕПАТА НА ГЕРМАНСКИТЕ ЦЪРКВИ И УНИВЕРСИТЕТИ ЗА НАЦИЗМА
archiman
Robert P. Ericksen
Complicity in the Holocaust: Churches and Universities in Nazi Germany
Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 2012, 280 pp.
ISBN: 9781107663336
Price: £18.99

Description

In one of the darker aspects of Nazi Germany, churches and universities – generally respected institutions – grew to accept and support Nazi ideology. Robert P. Ericksen explains how an advanced, highly educated, Christian nation could commit the crimes of the Holocaust. This book describes how Germany's intellectual and spiritual leaders enthusiastically partnered with Hitler's regime, thus becoming active participants in the persecution of Jews, and ultimately, in the Holocaust. Ericksen also examines Germany's deeply flawed yet successful postwar policy of denazification in these institutions. Complicity in the Holocaust argues that enthusiasm for Hitler within churches and universities effectively gave Germans permission to participate in the Nazi regime.

Table of contents

1. Why the Holocaust matters in a century of death
2. Churches and the rise of Hitler
3. Universities and the rise of Hitler
4. Consent and collaboration: the churches through 1945
5. The intellectual arm: universities through 1945
6. Repressing and reprocessing the past: denazification and its legacy of dissimulation
7. A closer look: denazification at Göttingen University
8. Implications.

Reviews

'Based on decades of his own research and complete mastery of both German- and English-language scholarship in the field, Robert Ericksen demonstrates convincingly how a critical mass of churchmen and academics in Germany enthusiastically embraced the Nazi regime and provided the rationalizations and adjustment of moral norms that permitted ordinary Germans to accept and even implement the regime's brutal and murderous policies.'
Christopher R. Browning, Frank Porter Graham Professor of History, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

'Robert P. Ericksen has given us a masterful comparative study of the churches and the universities in Nazi Germany. Two institutions entrusted to foster the collective conscience and intellect of the German people are revealed to have compromised their integrity by collaborating in the Holocaust, despite the fact that Jews had been crucial in creating Christianity (Jesus and Paul) and enhancing German academic scholarship.'
Susannah Heschel, author of The Aryan Jesus: Christian Theologians and the Bible in Nazi Germany (2008)


ДЖОН ДИЙ И МОДЕРНИЯТ ОКУЛТИЗЪМ
archiman
Egil Asprem
Arguing with Angels: Enochian Magic and Modern Occulture
Albany, NY, State University of New York Press, 2012, 230 pp.
SUNY series in Western Esoteric Traditions
ISBN13: 978-1-4384-4191-7
Price: $75.00

Summary

An exploration of John Dee’s Enochian magic of angel contact, its reinterpretation over the years, and its endurance to the present day.

This fascinating work explores John Dee’s Enochian magic and the history of its reception. Dee (1527–1608/9), an accomplished natural philosopher and member of Queen Elizabeth I’s court, was also an esoteric researcher whose diaries detail years of conversations with angels achieved with the aid of crystal-gazer Edward Kelley. His Enochian magic offers a method for contacting angels and demons based on secrets found in the apocryphal Book of Enoch.

Examining this magical system from its Renaissance origins to present day occultism, Egil Asprem shows how the reception of Dee’s magic is replete with struggles to construct and negotiate authoritative interpretational frameworks for doing magic. Arguing with Angels offers a novel, nuanced approach to questions about how ritual magic has survived the advent of modernity and demonstrates the ways in which modern culture has recreated magical discourse.

Review

“Arguing with Angels is a major contribution to the study of Western esotericism in general, and to the study of Enochiana in particular. It places the history and reception of the Enochian tradition within the broader context of Western esotericism, thereby making Enochiana relevant. Egil Asprem not only shows a thorough familiarity with relevant theories, but also relates to them critically and argues convincingly for his own interpretations and conclusions.” — Henrik Bogdan, author of Western Esotericism and Rituals of Initiation

Author

Egil Asprem is a Research Fellow at the Center for History of Hermetic Philosophy and Related Currents at the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Table of Contents

List of Tables
Acknowledgments
Introduction
PART ONE: HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVES
1. The Magus and the Seer
2. Whispers of Secret Manuscripts
3. Victorian Occultism and the Invention of Modern Enochiana
4. The Authenticity Problem and the Legitimacy of magic
PART TWO: MAJOR TRENDS IN ENOCHIAN MAGIC
5. The Angels and the Beast
6. Angels of Satan
7. The Purist Turn
8. Enochiana without Borders
Conclusions
Appendix
Notes
Bibliography


МАКЕДОНСКИТЕ ЕВРЕИ (1918-1941)
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Birri-Tomovska, Kristina
Jews of Yugoslavia 1918-1941: A History of Macedonian Sephards
Bern еtc., Peter Lang, 2012, 304 pp.
Print: ISBN 978-3-0343-1166-3 pb.
SFR 49.00 / €* 40.20 / €** 41.40 / € 37.60 / £ 34.00 / US$ 52.95
Order online: www.peterlang.com

Book synopsis

The investigation on the history of the Yugoslav and Macedonian Jews between the two world wars was developed through a number of researches in the archives in Macedonia, Serbia, Greece and Israel. The project itself was based on three levels and approaches; from an
international position of the Jews, after WWI; the regional, within the history of the Yugoslav Jewry; and the position of the Sephardic Jewry on a local level, i.e. in Macedonia itself. The international context required a use of international acts brought in regard to minority rights protection, after the WWI during the Paris Conference and the establishment of the Geneva System. The second level observed the position of the Macedonian Sephards within the overall Yugoslav Jewry, which was consisted of Ashkenazim, Sephardim as well as of the Orthodox Jews, as a separate group. The third level deals with the everyday life of the Macedonian Sephards from 1912 to 1941, as well as their social, cultural, political and economic development in one micro environment. The inter-ethnic relations, which were part of the political, social and Jewish reality in Macedonia, were also investigated in this study.

Contents

Sephardic Jewry Heritage during the Iberian and Ottoman Eras - The Wars and Their Aftermath - National and International - Building Yugoslav Jewry - Ashkenazim and Sephardim: The Question of Assimilation - The Macedonian Sephards - Road to Treblinka.

About the author

Kristina Birri-Tomovska studied languages and political sciences in Skopje and Athens. In 2000 she obtained a Master of Arts (MA) and in 2008 a PhD at the University of Basel. During her studies, she worked and took part on international conferences. She also published articles, in German, English and Macedonian language related to the history and the culture of the Yugoslav and Macedonian Jews and other minorities during the interwar period.



РАННАТА ЦЪРКВА ЗА УБИЙСТВОТО
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Ronald J. Sider
Early Church on Killing, The: A Comprehensive Sourcebook on War, Abortion, and Capital Punishment
Grand Rapids (MI), Baker Academic, 2012, 224 pp.
ISBN: 978-0-8010-3630-9
Price: $27.99

Description:

Noted theologian Ron Sider lets the testimony of the early church speak in the first of a three-volume series on biblical peacemaking. This volume offers a thorough, comprehensive treatment on topics of perennial concern--war, abortion, and capital punishment--providing English translations for all extant data directly relevant to the treatment of these issues by the early church until Constantine. Primarily, it draws data from early church writings, but other evidence, such as archaeological finds and Roman writings, is included. The book contains brief introductions to every Christian writer cited and explanatory notes on many specific texts. The Early Church on Killing will be a helpful text in courses on ethics, theology, and church history.

Table of contents:

Introduction
Part 1: Christian Writers before Constantine
1. Didache
2. The Epistle of Barnabas
3. First Clement
4. Second Clement
5. Apocalypse of Peter
6. Justin Martyr
7. Tatian
8. Irenaeus
9. Athenagoras
10. Clement of Alexandria
11. Tertullian
12. Minucius Felix
13. Didascalia apostolorum
14. Julius Africanus
15. Origen
16. St. Cyprian
17. Gregory Thaumaturgus
18. Dionysius of Alexandria
19. Archelaus
20. Adamantius, Dialogue on the True Faith
21. Arnobius of Sicca
22. Lactantius
Part 2: Church Orders and Synods
23. Apostolic Tradition
24. Three Later Church Orders
25. Synod of Arles
Part 3: Miscellaneous Items
26. The Infancy Gospel of Thomas
27. Paul of Samosata
28. The Acts of Xanthippe and Polyxena
Part 4: Other Evidence of Christian Soldiers before Constantine
29. "The Thundering Legion"
30. A Third Century Christian Prayer Hall Near a Military Camp
31. Epitaphs
32. Military Martyrs
33. Eusebius's Ecclesiastical History
34. An Early Christian Kingdom?
Afterword
Indexes
Endorsements

Author:

Ronald J. Sider (PhD, Yale University) is president of Evangelicals for Social Action and professor of theology, holistic ministry, and public policy at Palmer Theological Seminary in Wynnewood, Pennsylvania. He is the author of many books, including the bestselling Rich Christians in an Age of Hunger and The Scandal of the Evangelical Conscience.

Reviews:

"In this very important work, Ron Sider returns to his roots as a church historian to offer an exceedingly careful, measured study of the literary evidence left by the early church on the morality of killing. This volume is entirely free of propaganda or polemics, following the evidence where it leads. This deceptively brief, highly disciplined study should prove to be authoritative in this field."--David P. Gushee, Distinguished University Professor of Christian Ethics and director, Center for Theology and Public Life, Mercer University

"In a most helpful way and with an evident knowledge of the primary sources, Ronald Sider presents in translation a comprehensive sourcebook of early Christian statements on the issues of abortion, capital punishment, and military service. . . . Sider confronts the reader with the relevant texts themselves and so allows us to make our own independent judgment on the important question of the early church's position on these difficult and yet highly relevant themes. This book will be an asset in the libraries of pastors and laypeople alike and a welcome text in college and seminary classrooms."--William C. Weinrich, professor of early church history and patristic studies, Concordia Theological Seminary, Fort Wayne, Indiana

"The question of 'killing' has been a contested and debated issue from the earliest years of the church's history. May Christians serve in the military? Is abortion ever justifiable? What of the question of capital punishment? Ron Sider has produced an invaluable handbook of primary source material from an ancient Christian perspective that can serve the entire church well as we continue to face these thorny and often heartrending questions in a modern context."--Christopher A. Hall, chancellor, Eastern University
"In a time when violent death is all too common and wars of choice are undertaken all too readily, it is bracing to be reminded by this cloud of witnesses from the early church of the value that early Christians placed on human life and the severe judgments they issued on those who took it without cause."--Harold W. Attridge, Sterling Professor of Divinity, Yale Divinity School

"The composite portrait that these texts create is one of a radical Christian ethic and of a church that struggled to live into it. Even in the midst of this complexity, one can still see the outlines of a 'consistent ethic of life' in which aversion to the shedding of blood is paired with a willingness to lay down one's life in witness to the Prince of Peace. Should today's Christian communities have ears to hear this message, then the death-dealing powers that organize our world might have a genuine revolution on their hands."--Christian Collins Winn, associate professor of historical and systematic theology, Bethel University
"In recent years some have argued that the church of the first three centuries might have been somewhat ambivalent in its opposition to war and killing. Ron Sider's excellent and comprehensive sourcebook shows once again that, even though the practices of individual Christians might have deviated at times from what Christians are called to be and do, the uniform voice of the church before its rise to political power was one of unconditional rejection of war and killing in all its pluriformity. Against the cultural norms of power and the state's demands for obedience, early Christian writers responded with a bewildering call to love one's enemies and pray for one's persecutors. And that, as Tertullian insisted, sets Christians apart from all other people."--George Kalantzis, director, The Wheaton Center for Early Christian Studies; author, Caesar and the Lamb: Early Christian Attitudes to War and Military Service


ИЗВОРИ ЗА ЦЪРКОВНАТА ИСТОРИЯ IV-V ВЕК
archiman
Creeds, Councils, and Controversies: Documents Illustrating the History of the Church, AD 337-461
Еdited by J. Stevenson and W. H. C. Frend
Grand Rapids (MI), Baker Academic, 2012, 504 pp.
ISBN: 978-0-8010-3970-6
Price: $45.00

Description:

This sourcebook of primary texts illustrates the history of Christianity from Nicaea to St. Augustine and St. Patrick. It covers all major persons and topics in the "golden age" of Greek and Latin patristics. This standard collection, still unsurpassed, is now available to a wider North American audience.

Editors:

J. Stevenson (1901-1983) was a Fellow of Downing College, University of Cambridge.

W. H. C. Frend (1916-2005) was chair of ecclesiastical history at the University of Glasgow, a Fellow of the British Academy, and a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London.

Reviews:

"This collection of documents from the world of early Christianity is not only handy but also enlightening. Here, one has immediate access to ancient words on Gnosticism and Arianism, baptism and persecution, and canon and controversy. Here, in the antique, one may find something rare, something lovely, something new."--D. Jeffrey Bingham, professor of theological studies, Dallas Theological Seminary

"Professors of early Christianity will enthusiastically welcome the reprinting of these two extremely well-selected and unsurpassed collections of documents [A New Eusebius and Creeds, Councils and Controversies]. These two textbooks have long set the standard for collections of original documents illustrating the practices and thought of early Christians. It is extremely useful for those who teach this period to have these texts back in print."--Kevin Madigan, Winn Professor of Ecclesiastical History, The Divinity School, Harvard University

"J. Stevenson's classic two-volume compilation, A New Eusebius and Creeds, Councils, and Controversies, assembles snippets from a wide range of hard-to-find materials: acts of Christian martyrs, conciliar documents, fragments from heretics and persecutors, inscriptions on coins and catacombs, snatches of gossip in scattered letters. The final result is a brilliant mosaic of early Christianity."--William Harmless, author of Augustine in His Own Words


КРЪЩЕНИЕТО В РАННОТО ХРИСТИЯНСТВО
archiman
Robin M. Jensen.
Baptismal Imagery in Early Christianity: Ritual, Visual, and Theological Dimensions.
Grand Rapids (MI), Baker Academic, 2012, 256 pp.
ISBN: 978-0-8010-4832-6
Price: $24.99

Description:

Robin Jensen, a leading scholar of early Christian art and worship, illuminates the theological meaning of baptism by exploring multiple dimensions of the early Christian baptismal rite. She examines five models for understanding baptism, showing how visual images, poetic language, architectural space, and symbolic actions signify and convey the theological meaning of this ritual practice. Considering image and action together, Jensen offers a holistic and integrated understanding of the power of baptism. The book is illustrated with photos and will be useful to professors and students in courses on theology, ritual studies, liturgy, and sacraments as well as to art historians and archaeologists.

Table of contents:

Introduction
1. Baptism as Cleansing from Sin and Sickness
2. Incorporation into the Community
3. Baptism as Sanctifying and Illuminative
4. Baptism as Death and Regeneration
5. Baptism as the Beginning of the New Creation
Indexes
Endorsements

Author:

Robin M. Jensen (PhD, Columbia University and Union Theological Seminary) is Luce Chancellor's Professor of the History of Christian Art and Worship at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. She has authored several books, including Face to Face: Portraits of the Divine in Early Christianity and Understanding Early Christian Art.

Reviews:

"So clear and direct it can easily serve as a solid introductory text; at the same time it is so thoroughly researched it will serve scholars of early Christian history, liturgy, and art for years to come. This much-welcome and much-needed volume is not to be missed."--Todd Johnson, Fuller Theological Seminary


"This volume illumines the multiple biblical metaphors that evoke the meaning of baptism, offers a lucid and richly attested account of early church baptismal practices, and awakens the imagination of readers to engage in contemporary celebrations of baptism with renewed vitality. The book demonstrates that metaphor, architecture, visualization, and liturgy are not mere applications of theology but rather help constitute theology, and it does so in a way that is both accessible to students and instructive for veteran pastors and theological educators."--John D. Witvliet, Calvin Institute of Christian Worship, Calvin College and Calvin Theological Seminary

"Robin Jensen brings her scholarly acumen and aesthetic sensibility to the interpretation of the principal motifs of the early Christian baptismal ritual. Adding to her impressive writings on the subject of baptism, Jensen addresses this book to a more popular audience but with solid scholarly support. These thematic studies elucidate the effects and meaning of the baptismal liturgy as a sensory, symbolic, and spiritual experience for its recipients."--Everett Ferguson, Distinguished Scholar in Residence, Abilene Christian University


ОСМА НЕДЕЛЯ СЛЕД ПАСХА - ПЕТДЕСЕТНИЦА
archiman
"В начало Бог сътвори небето и земята... и Дух Божий се носеше над водата" (Бит. 1:1-2). Така започва разказът за сътворението в Библията, според който Св. Дух поражда всичко съществуващо във вселената. Духът е извор на живота. Св. Йоан Кръстител казва на учениците си: "Над Когото видиш да слиза Духът и да остава върху Него, Този е, Който кръщава с Дух Светий" (Йоан 1:33). Кръщаващият с Духа и в името на Духа пресътворява всичко отново. Всеки човек трябва отново да се роди в Св. Дух, за да придобие жадуваното безсмъртие (Йоан 3:5). Това е предсказано в Стария Завет. Св. пророк Исайя (11:1-2) пише по Божие вдъхновение, че Духът ще почива върху "младочката от Йесеевия пън". Йесей е бащата на цар Давид, от когото произхожда по плът Иисус Христос.

Спасителят е заченат от Духа, вижда Духа да Го осенява по време на кръщението, воден е от Духа в пустинята, където е изкушаван от сатаната. Всичко, което Христос извършва по време на обществената Си проповед, се прави под ръководството и със силата на Св. Дух. Хората, които похулват или отричат Св. Дух, според Христос няма да получат прошка за греха си нито на този, нито на онзи свят. Преди Възнесението Си Иисус обещава на апостолите, че не след дълго върху тях ще се излее Св. Дух така, както никога не е ставало дотогава. Това събитие е засвидетелствано с изобилни знамения и чудеса, от които най-потресаващото е дарът на езиците. Чужденците в Йерусалим, които изобщо не знаят арамейски език, могат да схванат всяка дума, изречена на този език от Христовите ученици (Деян. 2:4-12).

Но делото на Св. Дух не се ограничава само с деня Петдесетница преди 2000 години. Духът е действал и продължава да действа в живота на всеки отделен християнин, както и в живота на цялата Църква. Ние сме живите храмове на Св. Дух, Който дава на всекиго даровете на спасението. Доказателството, че сме чеда Божии е във факта, че „приехме Духа на осиновление, чрез Когото викаме: Авва, Отче!” (Рим. 8:15). Този Дух е носител на радост, любов и безкористно служение. На Петдесетница е родена не само Църквата, но в известен смисъл сме родени духовно всички ние.

Щом сме получили даровете на Духа, ние не трябва да ги крием и „заравяме в земята”, а да ги споделяме. Нашето задължение е да свидетелстваме пред света за изцеляващата и спасяващата сила на Св. Дух. Огънят на вдъхновението на Духа променя рязко уплашените и отчаяни ученици на Христос в непоколебими и целеустремени вестители на Евангелието. Те сигурно преживяват онази неудържима промяна, за която говори пророк Йеремия: „Няма да напомням за Него, нито ще говоря вече в Негово име; но в сърце ми беше като че ли разпален огън, заключен в костите ми, и аз се измъчих да го задържам, и – не можах” (20:9).

По същия начин откликват на призива на Духа апостолите Петър и Йоан, когато те отхвърлят изискването на синедриона да прекратят проповедта в името на Иисус: „Ние не можем да не говорим за това, което сме видели и чули” (Деян. 4:20). Въпреки противопоставянето, преследването, нежеланието на много хора да слушат, те остават твърди във вярата и непреклонни в мисията, възложена им от Христос. На Петдесетница от небето слиза „маята”, която заквасва „брашното” на целия свят.

Независимо от своята подготовка, способности и обществено положение, ние също сме призвани да участваме в мисията на Св. Дух. Но първо трябва да отворим сърцата си, за да може Духът да проникне в тях и да ги промени из основи. В нашата всекидневна молитва ние трябва да Го призоваваме, за да ни направи участници в Божия промисъл за спасението на света. „Кой чува, да каже: дойди!” (Откр. 22:17).


JAMBEDAEM, "BALANCE"
archiman



Balance_ by Jambedaem



КЪСНОСРЕДНОВЕКОВНАТА ЗАПАДНА МИСТИКА
archiman
Ben Morgan
On Becoming God: Late Medieval Mysticism and the Modern Western Self
Bronx, NY, Fordham University Press, 2012, 304 pp.
ISBN: 9780823239924
Price: $55.00

Description:

Do we have to conceive of ourselves as isolated individuals, inevitably distanced from other people and from whatever we might mean when we use the word “God”? On Becoming God offers an innovative approach to the history of the modern Western self by looking at human identity as something people do together rather than on their own, as a way of managing and keeping at bay the impulses and experiences associated with the word “God.”

The “self” is a way of doing things, or of not doing things, with “God.” The book draws on phenomenology (Heidegger), gender studies (Beauvoir, Butler), and contemporary neuroscience. It surveys existing approaches to modern selfhood (Foucault, Charles Taylor) and proposes an alternative account by investigating late medieval mysticism, in particular texts written in Germany by Meister Eckhart and others.

It concludes by exploring the parallel between late medieval confessors and their spiritual charges, and late-nineteenth-century psychoanalysts and their patients, in search of a vocabulary for acknowledging and nurturing our everyday commitments to others and to our spiritual longings.

Author:

BEN MORGAN is University Lecturer in German and Fellow of Worcester College, Oxford.

Review:

“It stands on its own as a new and essential contribution both to the interpretation of the significance of medieval mysticism and to the question of identity-formation.” —Niklaus Largier, University of California, Berkeley


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