THE PERFECT HERESY

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The Perfect Heresy

Author : Stephen O'Shea
ISBN : 9781847651518
Genre : Religion
File Size : 25.72 MB
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Eight hundred years ago, the Cathars, a group of heretical Christians from all walks of society, high and low, flourished in what is now the Languedoc in Southern France. Their subversive beliefs brought down on them the wrath of Popes and monarchs and provoked a brutal 'Crusade' against them. The final defeat of the Cathars was horrific with mass burnings of men, women and children in the village of Montaillou in the Pyrenees.
Category: Religion

The Gothic Enterprise

Author : Robert A. Scott
ISBN : 9780520949560
Genre : Architecture
File Size : 42.13 MB
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The great Gothic cathedrals of Europe are among the most astonishing achievements of Western culture. Evoking feelings of awe and humility, they make us want to understand what inspired the people who had the audacity to build them. This engrossing book surveys an era that has fired the historical imagination for centuries. In it Robert A. Scott explores why medieval people built Gothic cathedrals, how they built them, what conception of the divine lay behind their creation, and how religious and secular leaders used cathedrals for social and political purposes. As a traveler’s companion or a rich source of knowledge for the armchair enthusiast, The Gothic Enterprise helps us understand how ordinary people managed such tremendous feats of physical and creative energy at a time when technology was rudimentary, famine and disease were rampant, the climate was often harsh, and communal life was unstable and incessantly violent. While most books about Gothic cathedrals focus on a particular building or on the cathedrals of a specific region, The Gothic Enterprise considers the idea of the cathedral as a humanly created space. Scott discusses why an impoverished people would commit so many social and personal resources to building something so physically stupendous and what this says about their ideas of the sacred, especially the vital role they ascribed to the divine as a protector against the dangers of everyday life. Scott’s narrative offers a wealth of fascinating details concerning daily life during medieval times. The author describes the difficulties master-builders faced in scheduling construction that wouldn’t be completed during their own lifetimes, how they managed without adequate numeric systems or paper on which to make detailed drawings, and how climate, natural disasters, wars, variations in the hours of daylight throughout the year, and the celebration of holy days affected the pace and timing of work. Scott also explains such things as the role of relics, the quarrying and transporting of stone, and the incessant conflict cathedral-building projects caused within their communities. Finally, by drawing comparisons between Gothic cathedrals and other monumental building projects, such as Stonehenge, Scott expands our understanding of the human impulses that shape our landscape.
Category: Architecture

God S Jury

Author : Cullen Murphy
ISBN : 9780547607825
Genre : History
File Size : 62.43 MB
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“From Torquemada to Guantánamo and beyond, Cullen Murphy finds the ‘inquisitorial impulse’ alive, and only too well, in our world” (Jane Mayer, author of Dark Money). Established by the Catholic Church in 1231, the Inquisition continued in one form or another for almost seven hundred years. Though associated with the persecution of heretics and Jews—and with burning at the stake—its targets were more numerous, its techniques were more ambitious, and its effect on history has been greater than many understand. The Inquisition pioneered surveillance, censorship, and “scientific” interrogation. As time went on, its methods and mindset spread far beyond the Church to become tools of secular persecution. Traveling from freshly opened Vatican archives to the detention camps of Guantánamo to the filing cabinets of the Third Reich, the author of Are We Rome? “masterfully traces the social, legal and political evolution of the Inquisition and the inquisitorial process from its origins in late medieval Christian France to its eerily familiar, secular cousin in the modern world” (San Francisco Chronicle). “God’s Jury is a reminder, and we need to be constantly reminded, that the most dangerous people in the world are the righteous, and when they wield real power, look out. . . . Murphy wears his erudition lightly, writes with quiet wit, and has a delightful way of seeing the past in the present.” —Mark Bowden, author of Hue 1968 “Beautifully written, very smart, and devilishly engaging.” —The Boston Globe
Category: History

The Gnostic Bible

Author : Willis Barnstone
ISBN : 0834824140
Genre : Religion
File Size : 88.42 MB
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Gnosticism was a wide-ranging religious movement of the first millennium CE—with earlier antecedents and later flourishings—whose adherents sought salvation through knowledge and personal religious experience. Gnostic writings offer striking perspectives on both early Christian and non-Christian thought. For example, some gnostic texts suggest that god should be celebrated as both mother and father, and that self-knowledge is the supreme path to the divine. Only in the past fifty years has it become clear how far the gnostic influence spread in ancient and medieval religions—and what a marvelous body of scriptures it produced. The selections gathered here, in poetic, readable translation, represent Jewish, Christian, Hermetic, Mandaean, Manichaean, Islamic, and Cathar expressions of gnostic spirituality. Their regions of origin include Egypt, the Greco-Roman world, the Middle East, Syria, Iraq, China, and France. Also included are introductions, notes, an extensive glossary, and a wealth of suggestions for further reading.
Category: Religion

The Roots Of Evil

Author : John Kekes
ISBN : 9780801471308
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 28.16 MB
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"Evil is the most serious of our moral problems. All over the world cruelty, greed, prejudice, and fanaticism ruin the lives of countless victims. Outrage provokes outrage. Millions nurture seething hatred of real or imagined enemies, revealing savage and destructive tendencies in human nature. Understanding this challenges our optimistic illusions about the effectiveness of reason and morality in bettering human lives. But abandoning these illusions is vitally important because they are obstacles to countering the threat of evil. The aim of this book is to explain why people act in these ways and what can be done about it."—John Kekes The first part of this book is a detailed discussion of six horrible cases of evil: the Albigensian Crusade of about 1210; Robespierre's Terror of 1793–94; Franz Stangl, who commanded a Nazi death camp in 1943–44; the 1969 murders committed by Charles Manson and his "family"; the "dirty war" conducted by the Argentinean military dictatorship of the late 1970s; and the activities of a psychopath named John Allen, who recorded reminiscences in 1975. John Kekes includes these examples not out of sensationalism, but rather to underline the need to hold vividly in our minds just what evil is. The second part shows why, in Kekes's view, explanations of evil inspired by Christianity and the Enlightenment fail to account for these cases and then provides an original explanation of evil in general and of these instances of it in particular.
Category: Philosophy

Courts Of Love Castles Of Hate

Author : Aubrey Burl
ISBN : 9780752475325
Genre : History
File Size : 59.98 MB
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The figure of the Troubadour combines the ideals of knighthood with the inspiration of the poet and musician and created a cultural explosion which influenced the whole course of Western art and civilisation. Burl traces the story from the birth of the first Troubadour in 1071 to the execution of the last Cathar Good Man in 1231 and the close of the distinctive southern French culture that had given rise to it. The tale incorporates the Cusades to the Holy Lands and the Albigensian crusades through the Languedoc and the regular incursions from the English. In telling his story of the Troubadours and their song he brings to life the world of medieval Languedoc. The author is acknowledged as an authority on the Troubadours, one of the most evocative subjects in history.
Category: History

The Sociology Of Religion

Author : George Lundskow
ISBN : 9781412937214
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 33.55 MB
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Using a lively narrative, The Sociology of Religion is an insightful text that follows the logic of actual research, first investigating the facts of religion in all its great diversity, including its practices and beliefs, and then analyzing actual examples of religious developments using relevant conceptual frameworks. As a result, students actively engage in the discovery, learning, and analytical processes as they progress through the textùjust as a scholar pursues knowledge in the field and then applies theoretical constructs to interpret findings.This unique text is organized around essential topics and real-life issues and examines religion both as an object of sociological analysis as well as a device for seeking personal meaning in life. While primarily sociological in focus, the text incorporates relevant interdisciplinary scholarshipùthus teaching sociological perspectives on religion while introducing students to relevant research from other fields. Sidebar features and photographs of religious figures bring the text to life for readers.Key Features and Benefits:Uses substantive and truly contemporary real-life religious issues of current interest to engage the reader in a way few other texts doCombines theory with empirical examples drawn from the United States and around the world, emphasizing a critical and analytical perspective that encourages better understanding of the material presentedFeatures discussions of emergent religions, consumerism, and the link between religion, sports, and other forms of popular cultureDraws upon interdisciplinary literature, helping students appreciate the contributions of other disciplines while primarily developing an understanding of the sociology of religion InstructorÆs Resources on CD-ROM· InstructorÆs Resources on CD-ROM contains chapter outlines, summaries, multiple-choice questions, essay questions, and short answer questions as well as illustrations from the book. Contact Customer Care at 1-800-818-SAGE (7243) to request a copy (6:00 a.m.û5:00 p.m., PST).Intended Audience: This core text is designed for upper-level undergraduate students of Sociology of Religion or Religion and Politics.
Category: Social Science

The Expected One

Author : Kathleen McGowan
ISBN : 1416535683
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 38.17 MB
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THE GREATEST STORY NEVER TOLD! A POLITICAL RIVALRY THAT ENDED IN TWO EXECUTIONS AN INTRICATE LOVE TRIANGLE THAT ALTERED THE COURSE OF HISTORY A RELIGIOUS REVOLUTION THAT CHANGED THE WORLD Two thousand years ago, Mary Magdalene hid a set of scrolls in the rocky foothills of the French Pyrenees, a gospel that contained her own version of the events and characters of the New Testament. Protected by supernatural forces, these sacred scrolls could be uncovered only by a special seeker, one who fulfills the ancient prophecy of l'attendue -- The Expected One. When journalist Maureen Pascal begins the research for a new book, she has no idea that she is stepping into an ancient mystery so secret, so revolutionary, that thousands of people have killed and died for it. She becomes deeply immersed in the mystical cultures of southwest France as the eerie prophecy of The Expected One casts a shadow over her life and work and a long-buried family secret comes to light. Maureen's extraordinary journey takes her from the dusty streets of Jerusalem to the cathedrals of Paris . . . and ultimately to search for the scrolls themselves. She must unravel clues that link history's great artistic masters, including Sandro Botticelli, Nicolas Poussin, and Jean Cocteau; the Medici, Bourbon, and Borgia dynasties; and great scientific minds like Leonardo da Vinci and Isaac Newton. Ultimately, she, and the reader, come face-to-face with Jesus Christ, Mary Magdalene, John the Baptist, Judas, and Salome in the pages of a deeply moving and powerful new gospel, the life of Jesus as told by Mary Magdalene.
Category: Fiction

Pagan Theology

Author : Michael York
ISBN : 9780814797389
Genre : Religion
File Size : 84.30 MB
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In Pagan Theology, Michael York situates Paganism—one of the fastest-growing spiritual orientations in the West—as a world religion. He provides an introduction to, and expansion of, the concept of Paganism and provides an overview of Paganism's theological perspective and practice. He demonstrates it to be a viable and distinguishable spiritual perspective found around the world today in such forms as Chinese folk religion, Shinto, tribal religions, and neo-Paganism in the West. While adherents to many of these traditions do not use the word “pagan” to describe their beliefs or practices, York contends that there is an identifiable position possessing characteristics and understandings in common for which the label “pagan” is appropriate. After outlining these characteristics, he examines many of the world's major religions to explore religious behaviors in other religions which are not themselves pagan, but which have pagan elements. In the course of examining such behavior, York provides rich and lively descriptions of religions in action, including Buddhism and Hinduism. Pagan Theology claims Paganism’s place as a world religion, situating it as a religion, a behavior, and a theology.
Category: Religion

Weird Tales 325

Author : Darrell Schweitzer
ISBN : 9781434437822
Genre : Fiction
File Size : 54.22 MB
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Weird Tales #325 (Fall 2001) features "From Out of the Crocodile's Mouth," by Darrell Schweitzer; "The Gravedigger's Apprentice," by Alvin Helms; "Our Temporary Supervisor," by Thomas Ligotti; "Where All Things Perish," by Tanith Lee; "The Wizard of Ashes and Rain," by David Sandner, and more.
Category: Fiction