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Holy Tears : Weeping in the Religious Imagination - Kimberley Christine Patton

Holy Tears

Weeping in the Religious Imagination

Paperback Published: 25th July 2005
ISBN: 9780691114446
Number Of Pages: 368

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What religion does not serve as a theater of tears? Holy Tears addresses this all but universal phenomenon with passion and precision, ranging from Mycenaean Greece up through the tragedy of 9/11. Sixteen authors, including many leading voices in the study of religion, offer essays on specific topics in religious weeping while also considering broader issues such as gender, memory, physiology, and spontaneity. A comprehensive, elegantly written introduction offers a key to these topics. Given the pervasiveness of its theme, it is remarkable that this book is the first of its kind--and it is long overdue.


The essays ask such questions as: Is religious weeping primal or culturally constructed? Is it universal? Is it spontaneous? Does God ever cry? Is religious weeping altered by sexual or social roles? Is it, perhaps, at once scripted and spontaneous, private and communal? Is it, indeed, divine?


The grief occasioned by 9/11 and violence in Afghanistan, Iraq, Israel, and elsewhere offers a poignant context for this fascinating and richly detailed book. Holy Tears concludes with a compelling meditation on the theology of weeping that emerged from pastoral responses to 9/11, as described in the editors' interview with Reverend Betsee Parker, who became head chaplain for the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner of New York City and leader of the multifaith chaplaincy team at Ground Zero.


The contributors are Diane Apostolos-Cappadona, Amy Bard, Herbert Basser, Santha Bhattacharji, William Chittick, Gary Ebersole, M. David Eckel, John Hawley, Gay Lynch, Jacob Olupqnà (with Sola Ajibade), Betsee Parker, Kimberley Patton, Nehemia Polen, Kay Read, and Kallistos Ware.

"A top-notch roster of scholars has produced an exceptional collection of essays, breaking new and fruitful ground in the study of religion... Contributors continually test the far-from-simple relationship between crying and emotion, and carefully probe the complicated meshing of personal history with collective memory."--Choice

Acknowledgmentsp. xi
Introductionp. 1
The Poetics and Politics of Ritualized Weeping in Early and Medieval Japanp. 25
Productive Tears: Weeping Speech, Water, and the Underworld in Mexica Traditionp. 52
"Why Do Your Eyes Not Run Like a River?" Ritual Tears in Ancient and Modern Greek Funerary Traditionsp. 67
"Sealing the Book with Tears": Divine Weeping on Mount Nebo and in the Warsaw Ghettop. 83
The Gopis' Tearsp. 94
Hsuan-tsang's Encounter with the Buddha: A Cloud of Philosophy in a Drop of Tearsp. 112
Weeping in Classical Sufismp. 132
"No Power of Speech Remains": Tears and Transformation in South Asian Majlis Poetryp. 145
Ekun Iyawo: Bridal Tears in Marriage Rites of Passage among the Oyo-Yoruba of Nigeriap. 165
A Love for All Seasons: Weeping in Jewish Sourcesp. 178
"Pray with Tears and Your Request Will Find a Hearing": On the Iconology of the Magdalene's Tearsp. 201
Tears and Screaming: Weeping in the Spirituality of Margery Kempep. 229
"An Obscure Matter": The Mystery of Tears in Orthodox Spiritualityp. 242
"Howl, Weep and Moan, and Bring It Back to God": Holy Tears in Eastern Christianityp. 255
"Send Thou Me": God's Weeping and the Sanctification of Ground Zerop. 274
Epilogue: Tikkun ha-olamp. 30
Indexp. 303
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780691114446
ISBN-10: 0691114447
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 368
Published: 25th July 2005
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24  x 2.54
Weight (kg): 0.47