Description : The idea and practice of sacrifice play a profound role in religion, ethics, and politics. In this brief book, philosopher Moshe Halbertal explores the meaning and implications of sacrifice, developing a theory of sacrifice as an offering and examining the relationship between sacrifice, ritual, violence, and love. On Sacrifice also looks at the place of self-sacrifice within ethical life and at the complex role of sacrifice as both a noble and destructive political ideal. In the religious domain, Halbertal argues, sacrifice is an offering, a gift given in the context of a hierarchical relationship. As such it is vulnerable to rejection, a trauma at the root of both ritual and violence. An offering is also an ambiguous gesture torn between a genuine expression of gratitude and love and an instrument of exchange, a tension that haunts the practice of sacrifice. In the moral and political domains, sacrifice is tied to the idea of self-transcendence, in which an individual sacrifices his or her self-interest for the sake of higher values and commitments. While self-sacrifice has great potential moral value, it can also be used to justify the most brutal acts. Halbertal attempts to unravel the relationship between self-sacrifice and violence, arguing that misguided self-sacrifice is far more problematic than exaggerated self-love. In his exploration of the positive and negative dimensions of self-sacrifice, Halbertal also addresses the role of past sacrifice in obligating future generations and in creating a bond for political associations, and considers the function of the modern state as a sacrificial community.
Description : The volume consists of collected papers from Taubes Minerva Center for Religious Anthropology conferences examining (1) the role of sacrifice in religious experience from a comparative perspective and (2) alternatives to sacrifice.
Description : This is a pre-1923 historical reproduction that was curated for quality. Quality assurance was conducted on each of these books in an attempt to remove books with imperfections introduced by the digitization process. Though we have made best efforts - the books may have occasional errors that do not impede the reading experience. We believe this work is culturally important and have elected to bring the book back into print as part of our continuing commitment to the preservation of printed works worldwide.
Description : Strenski argues that public discourse about religious notions, like sacrifice, cannot be theological in our modern societies. Theological notions of sacrifice and theological approaches to it should be replaced by those like that developed by the Durkheimians because theological discourse cannot but help being religiously biased.
Description : An investigation of the multiple meanings and functions of sacrifice in diverse religious texts and practices from the late Hellenistic and Roman imperial periods.
Description : Animal sacrifice has been critical to the study of ancient Mediterranean religions since the eighteenth century. More recently, two leading views on sacrifice have dominated the subject: the psychological approach of Walter Burkert and the sociological one by Jean-Pierre Vernant and Marcel Detienne. These two perspectives have argued that the main feature of sacrifice is allaying feelings of guilt at the slaughter of sacrificial animals. However, both approaches leave little room for the role of the priests and the gods they hope to communicate with. Nor do they allow for comparison between animal sacrifice and other oblations offered to the gods. F. S. Naiden redresses the omission of these salient features to show that, far from being an attempt to assuage guilt or achieve solidarity, animal sacrifice is an attempt to make contact with a divine being, and that it is so important for—and perceived to be so risky for—the worshippers that it becomes subject to regulations of unequaled extent and complexity. Sacrificial priests are the most closely regulated of all Greek officials, and sacrifice itself is the most closely regulated public business. All this anxiety and effort invites some explanation, yet to date scholars have paid little attention to these regulations. Smoke Signals for the Gods addresses these, while drawing on recent work on Greek sacred law and Greek religious terminology. Furthermore, it seek to explain how mistaken views of sacrifice and animals arose, and traces them farther into the past, often back to early Christianity. Drawing on a wealth of sources, this book provides a complete picture of ancient animal sacrifice.
Description : An examination of the practice and philosophy of sacrifice in three religious traditions In the book of Genesis, God tests the faith of the Hebrew patriarch Abraham by demanding that he sacrifice the life of his beloved son, Isaac. Bound by common admiration for Abraham, the religious traditions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam also promote the practice of giving up human and natural goods to attain religious ideals. Each tradition negotiates the moral dilemmas posed by Abraham’s story in different ways, while retaining the willingness to perform sacrifice as an identifying mark of religious commitment. This book considers the way in which Jews, Christians, and Muslims refer to “sacrifice”—not only as ritual offerings, but also as the donation of goods, discipline, suffering, and martyrdom. Weddle highlights objections to sacrifice within these traditions as well, presenting voices of dissent and protest in the name of ethical duty. Sacrifice forfeits concrete goods for abstract benefits, a utopian vision of human community, thereby sparking conflict with those who do not share the same ideals. Weddle places sacrifice in the larger context of the worldviews of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, using this nearly universal religious act as a means of examining similarities of practice and differences of meaning among these important world religions. This book takes the concept of sacrifice across these three religions, and offers a cross-cultural approach to understanding its place in history and deep-rooted traditions.
Description : Sacrifice dominated the religious landscape of the ancient Mediterranean world for millennia, but its role and meaning changed dramatically with the rise of Christianity. Ullucci explores this transformation, in the process demonstrating the complexity of the concept of sacrifice in Roman, Greek, and Jewish religion.
Description : Most ideas of sacrifice, even specifically Christian ideas, as we saw in the Reformation controversies, have something to do with deprivation or destruction. But this is not authentic Christian sacrifice. Authentic Christian sacrifice, and ultimately all true sacrifice (whether one is conscious of it or not) begins with the self-offering of the Father in the gift-sending of the Son, continues with the loving "response" of the Son, in his humanity, and in the Spirit, to the Father and for us, and finally, begins to become real in our world when human beings, in the power of the same Spirit that was in Jesus, respond to love with love, and thus begin to enter into that perfectly loving, totally self-giving relationship that is the life of the triune God. The origins of this are in the Hebrew Bible, its revelatory high-points in Jesus and Paul, and its working out in the life of the Church, especially its Eucharistic Prayers. Special attention will be paid to the atonement, not just because atonement and sacrifice are often synonymous, but also because traditional atonement theology is the source of distortions that continue to plague Christian thinking about sacrifice. After exploring the possibility of finding a phenomenology of sacrificial atonement in Girardian mimetic theory, the book will end with some suggestions on how to communicate its findings to people likely to be put off from the outset by the negative connotations associated with "sacrifice."