Research Network Religious Emotions

The network, funded by the Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), is based on a workshop originally launched in 2012, which represents an ongoing research project pursued by theologian and philosopher of religion, Prof. Heiko Schulz (Goethe University, Frankfurt) and historian and philosopher of science and religion, Prof. Menachem Fisch (Tel Aviv University) in collaboration with a number of philosophically minded and religiously engaged colleagues. It is international in that it brings together no less than (currently) seventeen scholars from Austria, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Israel, Taiwan, Turkey, and the U.S.; in addition a number of Post Docs and/or junior researchers join forces regularly. The workshop is interfaith insofar as brings into scholarly discussion Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. And it is interdisciplinary because several disciplines and subdisciplines are represented in the discussion, including history, philosophy, theology; history of Christianity, history of science, philosophy of science, philosophy of religion, Jewish Studies, Islamic Studies, systematic theology, historical theology, and biblical theology, as well as practical theology.

The chief objective of the overall project, entitled Theology and Rationality, is to explore both historically and systematically, empirically and hermeneutically how each of the three great monotheistic faith traditions conceived and dealt with the inevitable tension between the autonomy of human reason and the heteronomous dictate of revealed religion; how and when the former is pressed into the service of the latter, or, conversely, required to submit and surrender. It is our firm belief that it is impossible to fully understand any significant moment in the life of any one of the three Abrahamic faiths without taking their mutual interaction into account. And there is no better way to do so than by studying their diverse responses to a shared problematic or tension in collaboration with scholars specializing in each.

The upcoming three workshops (2022-2024) – each of them to be held at Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften Bad Homburg – will tackle particular aspects of a hotly debated topic in recent (inter-)religious studies, theology and philosophy of religion: the concept (2022), rationality (2023) and moral function/s (2024) of religious emotions; accordingly, the overarching project-title is Reasons of the Heart. The Concept, Rationality and Moral Function of Religious Emotion in Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Each of the three workshops aims at addressing pertinent issues not only from a general and/ or abstract vantage-point, but also with a keen eye on concrete religious phenomena, in particular paradigmatic emotions such as love, trust, joy, grief, sadness, jealousy, hatred etc., plus their specific religious bearings. Moreover, at least one additional expert from outside the closer network-circle will be invited to every workshop in order to extend and contextualize the discussions of the group. The first of the tripartite series titled „The Concept and Forms of Religious Emotion in Judaism, Christianity and Islam“ will be held at Forschungskolleg Humanwissenschaften Bad Homburg between May 16 and 18, 2022.

The research fellows are:

Acar, Rahim, Marmara University, Faculty of Theology, Istanbul, Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies, Professor of Philosophy of Religion.

Afterman, Adam, Tel Aviv University, Department of Jewish Philosophy and Talmud, Professor of Jewish Philosophy and Jewish Mysticism.

Almog, Yael, Durham University UK, School of Modern Languages and Cultures, Assistant Professor of German Literature.

Fehige, Yiftach, Universtiy of Toronto, Institute for the History and Philosophy of Science and Technology, Associate Professor of Christianity and Science.

Fisch, Menachem, Tel Aviv University, Joseph and Ceil Mazer Professor Emeritus of History and Philosophy of Science, Director of the Center for Religious and Interreligious Studies.

Fortin, Jean-Pierre, University of St. Michael’s College Toronto, Faculty of Theology, Associate Professor of Practical Theology.

Grössl, Johannes, Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Katholisch-Theologische Fakultät, Lehrstuhl für Fundamentaltheologie, Akademischer Rat auf Zeit.

Linde, Gesche, Universität Tübingen, Professorin für Systematische Theologie und Religionsphilosophie.

Luh, Jing-Jong, National Center University Taiwan, Graduate Institute of Philosophy, Professor of Intercultural Philosophy.

McLean, Bradley, Knox College, Toronto School of Theology, University of Toronto, Professor of New Testament Language and Literature and Member of The Graduate Department for the Study of Religion.

Omerika, Armina, Goethe-Universität Frankfurt, Fachbereich Sprach- und Kulturwissenschaften, Juniorprofessorin für Ideengeschichte des Islams.

Schulz, Heiko, Goethe Universität, Evangelische Theologie, Professor für Systematische Theologie und Religionsphilosophie.

Shenhav, Gilad, University of Potsdam, Institute for Jewish Studies and Religious Studies, Postdoctoral Fellow.

Tamer, Georges, FAU Erlangen-Nürnberg, Institut für Sprachen und Kulturen des Nahen Ostens und Ostasiens, Professor für Orientalische Philologie und Islamwissenschaft.

Wagner, Thomas, Bergische Universität Wuppertal, Fakultät für Geistes- und Kulturwissenschaften, Akademischer Oberrat für Altes Testament.

Welz, Claudia, Aarhus University, School of Culture and Society, Faculty of Arts, Professor of Ethics and Philosophy of Religion.

Wiese, Christian, Goethe Universität, Evangelische Theologie, Professor für Jüdische Religionsphilosophie.