Posts made in April, 2017

“WATER THE EARTH”: DOSTOEVSKY ON TEARS George Pattison

Posted by on Apr 22, 2017 in Library | Comments Off on “WATER THE EARTH”: DOSTOEVSKY ON TEARS George Pattison

“WATER THE EARTH”: DOSTOEVSKY ON TEARS George Pattison As opposed to modern Western culture, in which tears are seen as unmanly, Dostoevsky inherits not only a cultural but also a religious tradition that gives positive significance to tears in the spiritual life, as in the teachings of Isaac the Syrian, which Dostoevsky knew. According to this teaching, tears manifest a dispossession of the ego and an opening of the self to...

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WOMEN IN THE SYRIAC TRADITION Susan Ashbrook Harvey,

Posted by on Apr 22, 2017 in Library | Comments Off on WOMEN IN THE SYRIAC TRADITION Susan Ashbrook Harvey,

WOMEN IN THE SYRIAC TRADITION Susan Ashbrook Harvey, Professor, Department of Religious Studies, Brown University, USA. A Syriac apocryphal work, the Acts of Thomas holds that Christianity was brought to India by the apostle Judas Thomas in the middle of the first century AD. At the beginning of this document, two striking encounters with women take place. The first occurs soon after Thomas arrives in India as a slave, bought to serve King Gundaphorus as a carpenter. The only person to recognize that Thomas is not what he seems is a young Hebrew flute girl. A servant, the girl is portrayed as...

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“Menander the Sage said” / Storytelling, the Meaning of Life, and The Epic of Gilgamesh / Ahiqar’s Proverbs

Posted by on Apr 18, 2017 in Library | Comments Off on “Menander the Sage said” / Storytelling, the Meaning of Life, and The Epic of Gilgamesh / Ahiqar’s Proverbs

“Menander the Sage said: …” These words introduce a collection of wisdom sayings written in the Syriac language. The purpose of the author in drawing up this anthology of maxims was to show his readers how they could best live in a world in which good and evil, misfortune and fortune are mingled in an unpredictable way. Passing through a world of this nature, people need to be provided with direction, and the author gives such guidance by means of various counsels. The work is often designated a florilegium, and this seems to be a fairly good name for the collection,...

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The First Children’s Literature? The Case for Sumer / Gillian Adam

Posted by on Apr 18, 2017 in Library | Comments Off on The First Children’s Literature? The Case for Sumer / Gillian Adam

Children’s literature, as the term is generally understood today, cannot be said to exist before the eighteenth century and the advent of printed books marketed to children for their enjoyment. Some scholars, however, believe that works from earlier periods routinely associated with children, even if their purpose is didactic or they were not written specifically for children, can also be classified as children’s literature. Standard bibliographies of children’s literature begin with texts from the medieval period; in addition, recent scholarship has focused on medieval and...

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THE BABYLONIAN ZODIAC Robert Powell, Ph.D.

Posted by on Apr 18, 2017 in Library | Comments Off on THE BABYLONIAN ZODIAC Robert Powell, Ph.D.

Abstract: This paper outlines the historical background of the ancient sidereal zodiac of the Babylonians. Sidereal means “of the stars”. Both the ancient Babylonian zodiac and the modern astronomical zodiac are sidereal, i.e., defined in relation to the stars belonging to the zodiacal belt. Whereas the Babylonian zodiac comprised twelve equal constellations, each 30 degrees in length, the astronomical zodiac is made up of twelve unequal-length constellations. Following the definition of the Greek astronomer Hipparchus (second century B.C.), where 30-degree constellational...

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