Divination and Interpretation of Signs in the Ancient

Divination and Interpretation of Signs in the Ancient World The concept of sign a portent observed in the physical world which indicates future events is found in all ancient cultures but was first developed in ancient Mesopotamian texts This branch of Babylonian scientific knowledge extensively influenced other parts of the world and similar texts written in Aramaic Sanscrit Sogdian and other languages The seminar investigates how much we know about the Babylonian theory and hermeneutics of omens and the scope of their possible influences on other cultures and regions Table of Contents Preface Introduction 1 Amar Annus Chicago On the Beginnings and Continuities of the Omen Sciences in the Ancient World 2 Francesca Rochberg 'If P then ' Form and Reasoning in Babylonian Divinations 3 James Allen Greek Philosophy and Signs 4 Ulla Susanne Koch 'Three Strikes and You are Out' A View on Cognitive Theory and the First Millennium Extispicy Ritual 5 Edward L Shaughnessy Arousing Images The Poetry of Divination and the Divination of Poetry 6 Niek Veldhuis The Theory of Knowledge and the Practice of Celestial Divination 7 Eckart Frahm Reading the Tablet the Exta and the Body The Hermeneutics of Cuneiform Signs in Babylonian and Assyrian Text Commentaries and Divinatory Texts 8 Scott B Noegel 'Sign Sign Everywhere a Sign' Script Power and Interpretation in the Ancient Near East 9 Nils Heessel The Calculation of the Stipulated Term in Extispicy 10 Abraham Winitzer The Divine Presence and Its Interpretation in Early Mesopotamian Divination 11 Barbara Bock Physiognomy in Ancient Mesopotamia and Beyond From Practice to Handbook 12 Seth Richardson On Seeing and Believing Liver Divination and the Era of Warring States 13 Cynthia Jean Divination and Oracles at the Neo Assyrian Palace The Importance of Signs in Royal Ideology 14 JoAnn Scurlock Prophecy as a Form of Divination; Divination as a Form of Prophecy 15 John Jacobs Traces of the Omen Series umma izbu in Cicero De divination 16 Martti Nissinen Prophecy and Omen Divination Two Sides of the Same Coin

2 thoughts on “Divination and Interpretation of Signs in the Ancient World

  1. says:

    It is worth remembering that the city of Babylon is built on top of the Abzu a large underground body of water in Mesopotamian cosmic geography source and residence of all these divinities but that in the world that is to come there will be no sea a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away and the sea was no Rev 211This collection of essays the first by the editor known for his The Origin of the Watchers first pages 1 5 On the Beginnings and Continuities of Omen Sciences in the Ancient World seems authoritative on sources and practices of divination consistent too and uotable for the larger subject which anyway is the world order not lightly undertaken or proved This first essay neatly introduces many concepts to follow in the later which you find as you read but are grateful for the heads upThe will of supernatural agents and future events has first written evidence in 3000 BC Mesopotamia but after a millennium of writingword lists knowledge texts compendia of ominous phenomena to interpret the whole universe This is the book Clif High appeals to in his causal universe Here it is all divine will What this will is and how to defeat it is our subtext Appeals made to divine councils for change of omen background IEnoch's appeal for the Watchers Release rituals Namburbi mantic exegesis omen compendia knowledge texts considered scientific handbooks which again seems the inspiration to Pentagon DARPA and Rand illicit experiments in hybrid forms inspirited by mischwesen these issue from before the writing to make a Babylonian Diviner's manual in the Pentagon a Babylonian theory of signs which interpreted means desire to use them for war whether in heaven liver or lung what amount to raven croaks fire crackles door creaks dust clouds and the moon So it seems as if they have contacted the Chaldean wandering diviners and learned the modern analogy of his hepatoscopy or pattern recognition for divination whether oil on water flour and vinegar coin tosses stick falls stellar alignments clouds tea leaves cracks in the ground A theology of signs becomes an ontology of signs predicted also by any aberrant event even the plane in the Pentagon Annus thinks these constitute raw data for the study of the history of the mind and functioning of the brain It is also study of cosmic prison system This means to approve this writing but why does Annus cite 3Enoch three times 7 9 12 to prove anything when that late text 5th century AD cannot be considered with the same authority as the Second Temple IEnoch or the other sources given? It strikes the mind as a reach as odd as saying a wandering Chaldean diviner met Plato on his deathbed 11 as an instance of the transmission of these ideas to the Greek The section beginning at 7 of a Babylonian Theory of Signs of left and right positive and negative smack of a how to do it grimoire And there is an odd sentence in the summary to the effect that Even if not all Babylonian theories of signs make sense to a modern mind etically it may not be wrong to assume that they certainly did emically to the participants of that culture 13 an odd apology of negatives It may not be wrong to assume? Well what is right to assume? Not given This suggestion of empathy for his subject would not include chomping on a bone where his subject the Aztec Further at the end he wants to nudge aside the superiority of monotheism preconceived in many textbooks when that has long occurred unless he means how all these Mesopotamian scholars notice the satiric holding up to scorn of the polytheisticGane's “Composite Beings in Neo Babylonian Art” Secrecy and the Gods Secret Knowledge in Ancient Mesopotamia and Biblical Israel by Alan Lenzi Kilmer 1987 who posits posited Mesopotamian apkallus as the model for the biblical Nephilim Annus himself On the Origin of Watchers Kvanvig's Primeval History Babylonian Biblical and Enochic An Intertextual Reading Monstrous Appetites Giants Cannibalism and Insatiable Eating in Enochic Literature by Matthew Goff and other sources involved in the work paper Mischwesen give some accounts of these

  2. says:

    Collected essays are thoughtful and interesting but lots of repetition between essays

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