Class Notes (806,529)
Canada (492,283)
RS 170 (18)

January 21st Lecture- Sacred.docx

4 Pages
Unlock Document

University of Waterloo
Religious Studies
RS 170
Nick Shrubsole

st Lecture 3 – Sacred Power: Experiencing the Sacred Aliens January 21 , 2013 - Started by watching an episode of the Twilight Zone “The little people” – Power is not meant to be understood on all levels. Otto’s definition doesn’t only apply to a deity but could also apply to a sacred power. Lecture Overview >In this lecture we will - Discuss the concept of the sacred - Be introduced to Otto’s Idea of the Holy - Explore the major categories of “sacred power” - Identify two categories of religious experience - Discuss belief in Aliens as a religion The object of Religion - “the first affirmation we can make about the object of religion is that it is a highly and exceptional and extremely impressive “other”... This object is departure from all that is usual and familiar, and this again is the consequence of the Power it generates.” [Gerardus van der Leeuw (1890-1950)] The Sacred and the Profane - The world is filled with many kinds of powers to which humans must acknowledge in order to live their lives. - Some powers are ordinary o i.e. gravity, taxes, democracy - Some powers are extraordinary o Sacred means that they are set apart, profane just implies the ordinary o Sacred power is something outside of human understanding, human grasp The Idea of the Holy - The Numinous - From Latin, numina: powers associated with special places and functions - incomprehensible - Unique - Otto says that the holy is something that it outside of out rational ability to understand and that we can only study the people that are associated with the holy. For example: we cannot study God because that is outside of our ability to understand, but we can however study the people that follow and belief in God and this will give us some insight into the idea of God. Creature Feeling - Experiencing the numinous - Dependency on something objective and greater than one’s self - Overwhelmed by one’s nothingness - Otto’s description-- Mysterium (speaks to the non rational) Tremendum Facinans - This notion of creature feeling is important- the fact that people think that religion is objective is VERY important. Ambivalence of the Sacred - Is the sacred power good or bad? o “There is no religion whatever without terror, but equally none without love.. Physical shuddering, ghostly horror, fear, sudden terror, reverence, humility, adoration, profound apprehension, enthusiasm—all these within the awe experienced in the presence of Power.” (Van der Leeuw) - We don’t know if it’s good or bad. Most scholars argue that it is more about how people interpret religion. Manifestations of the Sacr
More Less

Related notes for RS 170

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.