Scielo RSS <![CDATA[Acta Theologica]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/rss.php?pid=1015-875820110004&lang=pt vol. 31 num. lang. pt <![CDATA[SciELO Logo]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/img/en/fbpelogp.gif http://www.scielo.org.za <![CDATA[<b>Biblical spirituality</b>: <b>an "other" reading (all├Ęgoria)</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400001&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt This article discusses the communicative dimension and dialogical dynamic of a text, in order to illuminate the relationship of Biblical Spirituality with the Bible. From a pragmatic perspective on the polar tension between author, text and reader, the article reflects on the action of the author-text on the reader, and the action of the reader in relation to the text, as two strategies of reading. The article illustrates these two strategies in terms of seven paradigms. It points out how the essence of pragmatics lies in the fact that the polar tension does not allow for indifference on the reader's part. Thus, a dialogical process is involved. The transition from an awareness of differences in respect of contents to dialogical non-indifference is crucial for Biblical Spirituality, because it marks the progression from a "meditative" way of reading, which is directed towards content (literary history), to an "orative" or prayerful way of reading, which is concerned with the God-human process of transformation. <![CDATA[<b>Conrad's allegorical reading of 1 Samuel 14</b>: <b>an analysis of a sermon by Conrad of Saint George on the worthy reception of the Blessed Sacrament</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400002&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The sermon on 1 Samuel 14 is a paradigm for the allegorical mode of reading in the Middle Ages. This mode of reading first of all relates the Bible text to our life and in doing so places the relationship with God in a central position. The text is an expression of a divine address. Subsequently the whole of the text is read from the perspective of the mystagogic moment as the reader's personal transformation process. In this way the historical context falls away and the development of the spiritual path becomes central. This shows that the allegorical mode of reading has its own logic and cannot be dismissed as human fantasy. This mode of reading is characterized by a great precision and a pure orientation on God's action. Modern readers will have to discover anew the divine address in the text, again and again. <![CDATA[<b>Contours of Biblical spirituality as a discipline</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400003&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt Three approaches are used for coming towards a definition of Biblical spirituality. The first approach is from lived spirituality. We see always a bipolarity of text and reader. The reader attributes meaning to the text guided by the data of the text. The second approach is the analysis of literature discussing Biblical spirituality. There are many spiritualities both in the Bible and in its readers, influenced by their contexts. The third approach is the discussion of the composing terms. A definition is given: Biblical spirituality is about the divine human relational process in the Bible and about the Bible in the divine human relational process. A dialogue of spirituality and exegesis is needed. For doing research a threefold competence is needed: in exegesis, in spirituality and in the integration of these two. The final section is about intertextuality. Intertextuality may help to understand the spiritual process in reading biblical texts. <![CDATA[<b>Exegetical analyses and spiritual readings of the story of the annunciation (Luke 1:26-38)</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400004&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt In this paper, four readings of Luke 1:26-38 are presented, together with evaluations regarding their possibilities for spirituality. The first reading is that of Lohfink. In his approach, the focus falls mainly on Jesus. Hardly any attention is accorded to the other characters: God, Gabriel and Mary. The second reading offers analyses in terms of which Mary is viewed as a prototype of liberation spirituality. This reading is informed by semiotic analysis and the sociology of literature. The third reading, which is based on narrative criticism, focuses on what happens to the characters of the story. The fourth reading is an intertextual one, which shows how the quotation of Gen 18:14 becomes an expression of one of the specific topics relating to the spirituality of the Gospel of Luke. The conclusion is that it is not the use of a specific method that is decisive for spirituality, but rather the openness of the researcher. <![CDATA[<b>Happiness in the Psalms</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400005&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The article enquires into the nature of happiness or well-being in the Old Testament Psalms. It considers first the Psalms' use of 'happiness' language, then goes on to seek a broader basis for the enquiry in key concepts such as freedom and justice, making some comparisons with Greek ideas. Finally it seeks to build up a picture of the person at the centre of the Psalms, particularly as the one who speaks, chiefly from the perspectives of speech itself, the 'soul', and praise, in the expectation that this may provide a portrait of the fulfilled human being. <![CDATA[<b>Prologue</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400006&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The article enquires into the nature of happiness or well-being in the Old Testament Psalms. It considers first the Psalms' use of 'happiness' language, then goes on to seek a broader basis for the enquiry in key concepts such as freedom and justice, making some comparisons with Greek ideas. Finally it seeks to build up a picture of the person at the centre of the Psalms, particularly as the one who speaks, chiefly from the perspectives of speech itself, the 'soul', and praise, in the expectation that this may provide a portrait of the fulfilled human being. <![CDATA[<b>Reading scripture through a mystical lens</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400007&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt In addition to the unprecedented interest in spirituality in recent decades, both at a popular level and also as an academic discipline, there has also been a resurgence of research dealing with spirituality and scripture. It is readily acknowledged that the hegemony of the historical-critical method is no longer tenable. As a method which sees the text as an artifact of history, there is minimal, if any, attempt to understand the experience of those who produced the text; it concentrates on a literal interpretation, at the expense of the polysemous nature of scripture. Contemporary scriptural studies, however, have witnessed a sea-change in interpretive methods of such magnitude, that it is difficult to keep up with current scholarship in this field. Within this paradigm shift, the importance of a spiritual reading of scripture has now come to the fore. More specifically, reading scripture through a mystical lens, as originally seen, inter alia, in the works of Origen, has taken its place, if not centre stage, at least on the stage, and no longer in the wings. Utilising the insights of a French Carmelite, Elisabeth Catez, a mystical reading of Paul exemplifies this new, yet ancient, hermeneutical method. <![CDATA[<b>Spirituality as "good Christian citizenship" in the Pastoral Epistles?</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400008&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt Dibelius, in his commentary on the Pastoral Epistles, suggested that they represented a way-of-being in the world resulting from the delay of the parousia. As such they advocate a form of spirituality which can best be described as "good Christian citizenship". This paper, drawing on both Taylor's understanding of the "social imaginary" and Waaijman's understanding of spirituality, examines Dibelius' contention by revisiting the concept of eusebeia (godliness/piety), which is prevalent in the Pastorals, in the light of the lived experience of pagans, Jews and Christians in first-century Ephesus. <![CDATA[<b>Spirituality in a secular age</b>: <b>from Charles Taylor to study of the Bible and spirituality</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400009&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt This essay proposes that those engaged in the study of the Bible in relation to spirituality would benefit from awareness of Charles Taylor's thinking in A Secular Age, which is a narrative not only about the emergence of the secular but also about the role of the spiritual in Western civilization. The essay indicates the significance of Taylor's work for understanding the present context of the experience of spirituality. It then suggests some possible implications for how biblical perspectives on spirituality might be studied, highlighting Taylor's category of the social imaginary. Finally, it reflects on the potential of Taylor's work for those who are interested in dialogue between a spirituality rooted in biblical perspectives and contemporary forms of spirituality, focusing on his notion of "fullness." <![CDATA[<b>The resurrection as Christ's entry into his glory (Lk. 24:26)</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400010&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt This essay discusses some apocalyptic perspectives on Luke's portrayal of the resurrection as Christ's entry into his glory (Lk. 24:26) in order to point out its mystical nature. After a discussion of some recent developments in research on Luke's Christology and apocalyptic literature, the importance of glory in Early Jewish and Christian apocalypses is discussed. This is followed by an explanation of the glory motif in Luke 24:26, its place in Luke's resurrection account in general and in the story of the disciples of Emmaus in particular. The essay then compares the mystical use of the glory motif in Luke 24:26 with Luke's use of glory elsewhere in his writings. It concludes with general remarks about the mystical nature of the resurrection in Luke's writings. <![CDATA[<b>The spirituality of the Letter to the Galatians</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400011&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The spirituality of the Letter to the Galatians has not received much attention so far. Accordingly, this issue is addressed in this article. After a brief overview of two studies that have already been done in this regard, the focus of this investigation is formulated as the spirituality that comes to expression in the Letter to the Galatians. Of the different approaches available to investigate this matter, the approach of Kees Waaijman is selected. In terms of this approach, two issues are then investigated systematically, namely the divine-human relational process as reflected in the Letter to the Galatians and the transformation process as reflected in the Letter. <![CDATA[<b>The transformative potential of the Apocalypse of John</b>]]> http://www.scielo.org.za/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1015-87582011000400012&lng=pt&nrm=iso&tlng=pt The transformative power of the Apocalypse of John is not situated in its prophetic predictions in the sense of information about the future but in its offer of divine wisdom by means of the symbolic scenes. The four types of symbols drawn by Gregory Baum from sociological traditions help to understand the transformative power of the symbols through which the possibility is offered to the hearers to see themselves and the world in new ways, to be able to discern between the ways of Babylon and the ways of Jerusalem. The transformation in view is not merely an individual and temporary one, but a cosmic, social and divine-human one in which perseverance in doing the works of Jesus to the end and holding on to the witness to/of Jesus (Rev 2:26; 12:17) play a crucial role.