Circle the passage in which you see reflected key terms in the phenomenology, after having defined them, and state how they are reflected. two pages

Please read carefully the following three passages.  Reflect on Otto’s and Eliade’s theories of the nature of religion and determine whether the feelings of mysterium tremendum and mysterium fascinans are experienced by the Moses, Arjuna, Mole, and Rat.  What, if anything, would make these scenes hierophanies?  In which experience do you discern a ganz Andere?  What is numinous about these experiences?  Do you note an axis mundi established in any of these experiences? The sacralization of the cosmos?  Thresholds? What rituals are at play and what are their functions? Would chaos threaten in the absence of these experiences? In light of the fact that the subjects are from different traditions (let’s give Mole and Rat the benefit of real existence for the sake of comparison), what insights can be drawn from these passages through comparative analysis about existence and religious experience?


Passage A

N/um is put into the body through the backbone. It boils in my belly and boils up to my head like beer. When the women start singing and I start dancing, at first I feel quite all right. Then, in the middle, the medicine begins to rise form my stomach. After that I see all the people like very small birds, the whole place will be spinning around, and that is why we run around. The trees will be circling also. You feel your blood become very hot, just like blood boiling on a fire, and then you start healing.

Ju/’Hoan Trance Dancer


Passage B

Meanwhile Moses was tending the flock of his father-in-law Jethro, the priest of Midian.  Leading the flock across the desert, he came to Horeb, the mountain of God.  There an angel of the Lord appeared to him in fire flaming out of a bush.  As he looked on, he was surprised to see that the bush, though on fire, was not consumed.  So Moses decided, “I must go over to look at this remarkable sight, and see why the bush is not burned.”

When the Lord saw him coming over to look at it more closely, God called out to him from the bush, “Moses! Moses!”  He answered, “Here I am.”  God said, “Come no nearer!”  Remove the sandals from your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground.  I am the God of your father,” he continued, “the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob.”  Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.  But the Lord said, “I have witnessed the affliction of my people in Egypt and have heard the cry of complaint against their slave drivers, so I know well what they are suffering.  Therefore, I have come down to rescue them from the hands of the Egyptians and lead them out of that land into a good and spacious land, a land flowing with milk and honey…” (Exodus 3:1-8)


Passage C

Krishna, the great lord of discipline, revealed to Arjuna the true majesty of his form.  It was a multiform, wondrous vision, with countless mouths and eyes and celestial ornaments, brandishing many divine weapons.  Everywhere was boundless divinity containing all astonishing things, wearing divine garlands and garments, anointed with divine perfume.  If the light of a thousand suns were to rise in the sky at once, it would be like the light of that great spirit.  Arjuna saw all the universe in its many ways and parts, standing as one in the body of the god of the gods.  Then, filled with amazement, his hair bristling on his flesh, Arjuna bowed his head to the god, joined his hands in homage and spoke: “…Seeing the many mouths and eyes of your great form, its many arms thighs, feet, bellies, and fangs, the worlds tremble and so do I.  Vishnu, seeing you brush the clouds with the flames of countless colors, your mouths agape, your huge eyes blazing, my inner self quakes and I find no resolve or tranquility.  Seeing the fangs protruding from your mouths like the fires of time, I lose my bearing and I find no refuge; be gracious, Lord of Gods, shelter the Universe … Tell me – who are you in the terrible form?  Homage to you, Best of Gods!  Be gracious!  I want to know you as you are in your beginning.  I do not comprehend the course of your ways.”   (Bhagavad Gita 10:8-31)

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