Giorgio Agamben sobre el Jesús judío y mesías


la Reforma en Suiza, (una versión de cantos de Salomón)

Un autre ouvrage, conservé lui aussi en un unique exemplaire déposé à la Bibliothèque de l’Arsenal, à Paris, nous permet de nous faire une petite idée de la musique religieuse interprétée à Lausanne au temps de Pierre Viret : Les Proverbes de Salomon, ensemble l’Ecclésiaste, mis en cantiques & rime françoise, selon la vérité hébraïque, par A[ccace] d’[Albiac] du Plessis, mis en musique par F. Gindron (Lausanne : Jean Rivery, 1556).

mitología en la antigua Grecia ( en inglés )

Welcome to the Theoi Project, a site exploring Greek mythology and the gods in classical literature and art. The aim of the project is to provide a comprehensive, free reference guide to the gods (theoi), spirits (daimones), fabulous creatures (theres) and heroes of ancient Greek mythology and religion.

decadencia de Occidente, Spengler, religiones

Talk of the Decline of the West? The 75th anniversary of the death of Oswald Spengler

Coverausschnitt von `Der Untergang des Abendlandes`; © C.H. Beck VerlagTalk of the decline of the West repeatedly haunts the media. Its author, Oswald Spengler, on the other hand, seems to be forgotten. Rightly so? On the occasion of the 75th anniversary of his death on May 8, spoke with cultural scientist Johann Pall Arnason.J.P. Arnason is from Iceland and teaches at La Trobe University in Australia. In the spring of 2010 he was at the University of Göttingen to pursue a research project on Oswald Spengler.

Mr Arnason, Spengler’s title “The Decline of the West (Untergang des Abendlandes)” is still proverbial in German, though hardly anyone actually reads the book any more. How do you explain Spengler’s strong indirect influence?

Johann Pall Arnason; © Universität GöttingenOn the one hand, Spengler is regarded as dealt with – certainly for good reasons. On the other hand, we can’t get rid of him. There will always be moods of crisis and decline in which we remember the title of his famous book. In recent years Spengler has even been newly translated, most recently into Czech for the first time. In post-communist states it is probably the disappointment with the capitalist path taken since 1990 that has made his scepticism about civilisation seem relevant again.

Spengler should’t be left to the extreme Right

Is such a Spengler renaissance dangerous because it supplies thinkers from the extreme Right with key ideas?

Cover of `Der Untergang des Abendlandes`; © C.H. Beck VerlagThat doesn’t really play a part in the scholarly discussion. We shouldn’t eschew Spengler because he was close to the right-wing of the political spectrum.

What was Spengler’s political position?

His political position was quite complex. He didn’t write The Decline of the West as a way of coping with the German defeat in the First World War, as is often assumed abroad. He already had the idea for the book before the war, and indeed he expected a German victory. Then in the 1920s he was in fact a kind of political activist for the radical Right.

Spengler was part of the so-called “Conservative Revolution” – which wasn’t, by the way, a single movement. In the 1932 presidential election he voted for Adolph Hitler, although he didn’t like him. But Spengler wasn’t a pioneer of the Third Reich. After Hitler took power in 1933, Spengler even showed political courage by criticising him in his book The Hour of Decision. After 1934 he went into inner emigration. In his unpublished notes from these years he wrote that Germany was now governed by murderers and compared Hitler to a monkey that had been set down to play a piano.

Family resemblances

And he wasn’t read and discussed only by the Conservative Revolution?

Oswald Spengler; © Deutsches Bundesarchiv (German Federal Archive)Not at all. There are surprising connections in Spengler’s reception. In the 1930s the eminent Finnish philosopher Georg Henrik von Wright and Ludwig Wittgenstein had discussions about him. Wittgenstein’s later use of “forms of life (Lebensformen)”, in which all our language games are embedded, was clearly influenced by his reading of Spengler.

Wittgenstein thought that Spengler should have spoken of the “family resemblances” of cultural phenomena instead of quasi-organic laws. This would have freed Spengler form his own misunderstanding of cultures as self-contained entities that don’t communicate with each another. And between the wars the Icelandic Nobel laureate in literature, Halldór Kiljan Laxness, even propounded a kind of Spenglerian Marxism – that is, interpreted Spengler from a leftist point of view.

Of cultural clash and collapse

Why should we still read Spengler today?

Cover of `Kollaps: Warum Gesellschaften überleben oder untergehen` (i.e. Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed); © Fischer Taschenbuch VerlagI can think of a number of issues on which Spengler’s thought could have a stimulating effect, without having to warm up again his whole “morphology of world history”. To begin with, critically: Spengler’s idea of self-contained high cultures still haunts the comparative study of civilisations. It is certainly in the background of Samuel Huntington’s theses about the “clash of civilisations”. On the other hand, sociology concerns itself too little about cultural forms of life, not least because of its fixation on the alternative of action or system. There is a deficit. Also not understanding that art and the history of art are significant dimensions of such forms of life, something to which Spengler attached great importance.

And finally there is in current civilisation research, initiated by, for example, Jared Diamond’s well-known book Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, a fresh discussion about collapse and failure. Here there’s no way round a critical reception of Spengler’s work.

Gregor Taxacher
conducted the interview. He is a theologian and works as an editor for West German Broadcasting (WDR) and as a freelance author (focussing on, among other subjects, Christianity, Judaism and Islam). In 2010 the Wissenschaftlichen Buchgesellschaft (WBG) published his book “Apokalyptische Vernunft: Das biblische Geschichtsdenken und seine Konsequenzen” (i.e., Apocalyptic Reason: Biblical Historical Thought and Its Consequences). He lives in Cologne.Translation: Jonathan Uhlaner
Copyright: Goethe-Institut e. V., Online-Redaktion
May 2011

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dossier sobre religiones

Dossier del Goethe Institut sobre las religiones

elección de vocaciones y órdenes religiosas

Novias de Jesucristo

El film ofrece una semblanza del fraile Robert [21 años], novicio en la orden de Santo Domingo, y de sor Gisela Johanna [35 años], hermana dominica. Los hemos acompañado un día entero en sus respectivos conventos y les hemos preguntado por los motivos que les llevaron a escoger, en los albores del tercer milenio, el antiguo camino del sacerdocio en pobreza, celibato y obediencia. Una jornada nada común en un país secularizado como la República Federal de Alemania.

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Hasta comienzos del siglo XX era algo natural que uno de los hijos de una familia católica se decidiera por el sacerdocio. Pero, a más tardar, a mediados del siglo XX, cambio la situación. La sociedad alemana de este y el oste se secularizó y, además, pluralizó su escala de valores.

El número de miembros de las órdenes cristianas masculinas en Alemania se redujo a la mitad en los últimos treinta años y hoy se cifra en 4.500. En las órdenes femeninas, pocos miembros jóvenes sostienen una invertida pirámide de edades. Todavía hay, por cierto, escasas 29.000 monjas, pero el 71 por ciento de ellas es mayor de 65 años.

Sin embargo, aún hay mujeres y hombres jóvenes que solicitan su ingreso en una orden confesional. En los noviciados se les forma y prueba durante uno o dos años. Y ellos mismos verifican si son capaces o no de vivir en pobreza, castidad y obediencia. Posteriormente y antes de comprometerse de por vida con la orden suelen hacer votos temporales por un par de años. En 2002, 120 mujeres y 70 hombres iniciaron el noviciado, el período de prueba, en Alemania.

Unas tendencias resultan interesantes: las órdenes femeninas activas, fundadas sobre todo en el siglo 19 para asistir a enfermos y gestionar colegios, residencias infantiles y kindergarten, apenas atraen a la población femenina alemana. La situación es distinta en los rigurosos conventos contemplativos, pues éstos tienen todavía postulantes. Las monjas viven aquí prácticamente aisladas del entorno, en paz y silencio, consagradas a la oración y los trabajos domésticos.

La tendencia común a las órdenes femeninas y masculinas, registrada en los últimos años, es que tanto las mujeres como los hombres no quieren ingresar en el monasterio directamente después de terminar el colegio, sino que prefieren realizar primero estudios superiores o una formación profesional.

La Orden Dominica, o sea la orden del hermano predicador [ordo fratrum praedicatorum] se remite al teólogo, sacerdote y predicador Santo Domingo [1170-1221]. Santo Domingo se propuso recuperar con sus prédicas a los cristianos reformadores y herejes que habían abandonado la Iglesia Católica. Con unas monjas reconvertidas creó su primer convento contemplativo y poco después, una orden masculina.

Más de 6.000 monjes viven hoy en la Orden de Santo Domingo en más de 100 países del mundo entero. Unas 4.000 monjas [moniales] habitan sus conventos contemplativos. Otras 30.000 hermanas viven en las congregaciones femeninas activas, muchas de las cuales fueron creadas en el siglo XIX.

La Orden de Predicadores ha podido hacer frente hasta ahora a los desafíos de la época gracias a tres aspectos que distinguen la vida en la orden:

los monasterios quedan casi siempre en el centro de la ciudad. Sus miembros se ven confrontados así con las corrientes e ideologías de su tiempo, así como con los intereses de la población circundante, fuera de los muros monacales.

Los dominicos poseen un espíritu democrático que les permite revisar continuamente sus reglas internas y mantenerse a la altura de la época. El superior no se elige de por vida. El maestre de la orden elegido en Roma vela por la operatividad y flexibilidad de la comunidad religiosa. La prédica es para los dominicos la misión principal y aprovechan para ello todos los medios: desde el púlpito y los periódicos hasta las artes plásticas y los nuevos medios comunicativos. Dan preferencia al trabajo académico-intelectual.

Goethe-Institut e. V. 2004
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