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Mircea Eliade

Mircea Eliade (1907-1986) was educated as a philosopher. He published extensively in the history of religions and acted as editor-in-chief of Macmillan's Encyclopedia of Religion. The influence of his thought, through these works and through thirty years as director of History of Religions department at the University of Chicago, is considerable.
Eliade's analysis of religion assumes the existence of "the sacred" as the object of worship of religious humanity. It appears as the source of power, significance, and value. Humanity apprehends "hierophanies"--physical manifestations or revelations of the sacred--often, but not only, in the form of symbols, myths, and ritual. Any phenomenal entity is a potential hierophany and can give access to non-historical time: what Eliade calls illud tempus (Latin for 'that time,' I tend to think of it as 'yon time'). The apprehension of this sacred time is a constitutive feature of the religious aspect of humanity.

More at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mircea_Eliade


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