Demonologies through the lenses of Grid and Group theory in the texts : Apocryphon of John (NHC I, 1 II, 1 IV, 1, BG 8502), Asclepius 21-29 (NHC VI,8) and The Life of Antony

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http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi:hulib-201506031311
Title: Demonologies through the lenses of Grid and Group theory in the texts : Apocryphon of John (NHC I, 1 II, 1 IV, 1, BG 8502), Asclepius 21-29 (NHC VI,8) and The Life of Antony
Author: Andreeva, Tatiana
Other contributor: Helsingin yliopisto, Teologinen tiedekunta
University of Helsinki, Faculty of Theology
Helsingfors universitet, Teologiska fakulteten
Publisher: Helsingfors universitet
Date: 2015
Language: eng
URI: http://urn.fi/URN:NBN:fi:hulib-201506031311
http://hdl.handle.net/10138/155489
Thesis level: master's thesis
Discipline: The Religious Roots of Europe
The Religious Roots of Europe
The Religious Roots of Europe
Abstract: This study focuses on comparison of demonologies in the texts Apocryphon of John, The Life of Antony and Asclepius. The study has two aims. Firstly, to bring together demonologies of the texts that were normally investigated separately and contrast them. Secondly, to analyse the result of the comparison and speculate about possible social setting that could have generate them. The latest is conducted with the help of Grid and Group Theory by Mary Douglas, which is used as a heuristic tool. What can be suggested about the social setting of the text that produced such a demonology? The study proceeds by juxtaposing demonologies with each other and by examining specific “traits” of texts’ demonologies: hierarchy, ranking, classification and etiology. All the collected data in the process of comparison is, simultaneously, analysed and evaluated from the perspective of Grid And Group Theory. Thus, distinctive features of every demonology are also juxtaposed with typical features of demonologies typical for four social setting (strong group/strong grid, strong group/weak grid, weak group/ strong grid, weak group/ weak grid), invented by Mary Douglas. After that, I move on to investigation the demonologies from the perspective of motivation (rationale) of Evil in them and their role in the bodily interference. According to Group and Grid theory, social structure of the community also somehow reflects not only the hierarchical side of cosmology, but also qualitative one. Thus, the texts are categorized in accordance with how justified Evil is in them and the importance of purity and impurity in cosmology. The last analysis chapter is concerned with comparing ways of demons attack and ways of possible defense against it. The examination shows how authoritative and dangerous the malevolent creatures are in each text. The results of the analyses confirm that all the three texts have different demonologies and, according to Grid and Group Theory, may be ascribed to different social settings. In case of The Life of Antony it is “strong group/ strong grid”, while Apocryphon of John fits well in “strong group/weak grid”. As for Asclepis, it bears the features of 3 social settings: strong group/strong grid, strong group/weak grid, weak group/ strong grid, weak group.
Subject: Early Monasticism
Demons
Demonology
Nag Hammadi Library
Asclepius


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