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Beyond the Qur an

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Ismailism, one of the three major branches of Shiism, is best known for tawl, an esoteric, allegorizing scriptural exegesis. Beyon... Weiterlesen
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Beschreibung

Ismailism, one of the three major branches of Shiism, is best known for tawl, an esoteric, allegorizing scriptural exegesis. Beyond the Quran: Early Ismaili tawl and the Secrets of the Prophets is the first book-length study of this interpretive genre. Analyzing sources composed by tenth-century Ismaili missionaries in light of social-science theories of cognition and sectarianism, David Hollenberg argues that the missionaries used tawl to instill in acolytes a set of symbolic patterns, forms, and "logics." This shared symbolic world bound the community together as it created a gulf between community members and those outside the movement. Hollenberg thus situates ta'wil socially, as an interpretive practice that sustained a community of believers. An important aspect of tawl is its unconventional objects of interpretation. Ismaili missionaries mixed Quranic exegesis with interpretation of Torah, Gospels, Greek philosophy, and symbols such as the Christian Cross and Eucharist, as well as Jewish festivals. Previously scholars have speculated that this extra- Quranic tawl was intended to convert Jews and Christians to Ismailism. Hollenberg, departing from this view, argues that such interpretations were, like Ismaili interpretations of the Quran, intended for an Ismaili audience, many of whom converted to the movement from other branches of Shiism. Hollenberg argues that through exegesis of these unconventional sources, the missionaries demonstrated that their imam alone could strip the external husk from all manner of sources and show the initiates reality in its pure, unmediated form, an imaginal world to which they alone had access. They also fulfilled the promise that their imam would teach them the secrets behind all religions, a sign that the initial stage of the end of days had commenced. Beyond the Quran contributes to our understanding of early Ismaili doctrine, Fatimid rhetoric, and, more broadly, the use of esoteric literatures in the history of religion.

Autorentext

David Hollenberg is an assistant professor of Arabic and islamic studies at the University of Oregon. He is author of numerous articles on Ismailism and coeditor of The Yemeni Manuscript Tradition. Hollenberg is the founder of the Yemen Manuscripts Digitization Initiative, a collective of scholars and librarians devoted to preserving the manuscripts of Yemen.



Klappentext

Ismailism, one of the three major branches of Shiism, is best known for ta w l, an esoteric, allegorizing scriptural exegesis. Beyond the Qur an: Early Ismaili ta w l and the Secrets of the Prophets is the first book-length study of this interpretive genre. Analyzing sources composed by tenth-century Ismaili missionaries in light of social-science theories of cognition and sectarianism, David Hollenberg argues that the missionaries used ta w l to instill in acolytes a set of symbolic patterns, forms, and "logics." This shared symbolic world bound the community together as it created a gulf between community members and those outside the movement. Hollenberg thus situates ta'wil socially, as an interpretive practice that sustained a community of believers. An important aspect of ta w l is its unconventional objects of interpretation. Ismaili missionaries mixed Qur anic exegesis with interpretation of Torah, Gospels, Greek philosophy, and symbols such as the Christian Cross and Eucharist, as well as Jewish festivals. Previously scholars have speculated that this extra- Qur anic ta w l was intended to convert Jews and Christians to Ismailism. Hollenberg, departing from this view, argues that such interpretations were, like Ismaili interpretations of the Qur an, intended for an Ismaili audience, many of whom converted to the movement from other branches of Shiism. Hollenberg argues that through exegesis of these unconventional sources, the missionaries demonstrated that their imam alone could strip the external husk from all manner of sources and show the initiates reality in its pure, unmediated form, an imaginal world to which they alone had access. They also fulfilled the promise that their imam would teach them the secrets behind all religions, a sign that the initial stage of the end of days had commenced. Beyond the Qur an contributes to our understanding of early Ismaili doctrine, Fatimid rhetoric, and, more broadly, the use of esoteric literatures in the history of religion.

Produktinformationen

Titel: Beyond the Qur an
Untertitel: Early Isma l Ta w l and the Secrets of the Prophets
Autor:
EAN: 9781611176797
ISBN: 978-1-61117-679-7
Digitaler Kopierschutz: Adobe-DRM
Format: E-Book (epub)
Herausgeber: University of South Carolina Press
Genre: Religion, Theologie
Anzahl Seiten: 192
Veröffentlichung: 20.10.2016
Jahr: 2016
Untertitel: Englisch
Dateigrösse: 1.7 MB