Visions of Jesus: Direct Encounters from the New Testament to Today

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9780195097504: Visions of Jesus: Direct Encounters from the New Testament to Today
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Eve Zelle, a single mother of two, long out of work and in despair over her situation, extended her hand in a moment of desperate prayer and said to God, "If I could only touch you, if I could only touch your hand"--and when she opened her eyes, she was startled to see Jesus in front of her. "He was on his knees holding both my hands with the most compassionate warm eyes that I had ever seen, with strength behind them." Eve had this vision in the late 1980s. Of course, visions of Jesus have been experienced since the earliest days of Christianity, and have been reported throughout the ages--by Catherine of Siena, Ignatius Loyola, Julian of Norwich, Teresa of Avila, and many others. But what are we to make of contemporary instances? Are they hallucinations? The result of temporary insanity? Or are they genuine visions, comparable to the appearances of Christ recorded in the Bible?
In this thought-provoking volume, Phillip H. Wiebe provides the first critical study of visions of Jesus reported in recent years. Here are intriguing accounts of visions as told by thirty people, most of them ordinary men and women without prior or subsequent experiences of this kind, who remain mystified about having had such experiences. Ernie Hollands, a career criminal born in the slums of Halifax, Nova Scotia, said Christ appeared to him while he was in his cell in Millhaven Penetentiary. Maria Martinez saw Jesus at a busy intersection in Miami, Florida, in 1964. Rose Fairs was lying in bed one morning, wide awake, when the Venetian blinds opened up and the head of Jesus materialized before her. Wiebe recounts each of the visions in vivid detail, and examines the often dramatic changes the apparitions brought about in the lives and beliefs of the subjects. He then explores why these individuals believe their visions were of Jesus, and why they typically believe them to be objective happenings, rather than hallucinations or dreams. Wiebe does weigh the possibility that the experiences could be hallucinatory, and to that end he discusses these phenomena in light of recent literature on the psychology and neurology of visual hallucinations. Additionally, he regards these occurrences from perspectives as diverse as those of biblical scholarship and parapsychology, asking such questions as: Were the subjects only imagining a figure that seemed as real as life? How do these experiences differ from dreams? Could they be imaginative visions produced by angels? How does the Church traditionally regard such phenomena?
Wiebe concludes that these contemporary visions of Jesus may well represent genuine religious experiences of a mystical character, the implications of which call out for further study and analysis. The fascinating nature of these visions and Wiebe's thoughtful and evenhanded approach to these reports add up to a book that will make provocative reading for skeptics and the faithful alike.

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About the Author:


Phillip H. Wiebe is Professor of Philosophy and Assistant Dean of Arts and Religious Studies at Trinity Western University in Canada.

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Wiebe (Philosophy/Trinity Western Univ., Canada) draws on 30 contemporary visionaries and a wide range of scholarship in an attempt to produce a philosophically coherent critique of visions of Jesus. Many people claim to have experienced these visions, so that dismissing all such reports as hoaxes or hallucinations can look like prejudice. But the question remains, what sense are we to make of what the visionaries tell us? Wiebe's answer is that visions of Jesus do not exactly prove anything about the truth of Christianity or even the existence of God, but they are symbolic of a transcendent realm that is as real as that of conventional Western science. Wiebe's approach involves issues of epistemology and philosophy of religion; for example, he uses the thought of Richard Swinburne and Alvin Platinga and looks at various theories of how mind and body interact. Wiebe is also a disciple of William James and Alistair Hardy in his attitude to religious experience. Our author offers as the empirical basis of his study 30 contemporary cases of alleged visions that he has personally investigated. These include not only dreamlike encounters but also experiences shared by groups of people and even recorded on film. Not all of the visionaries were religiously active, but in spite of Wiebe's protestations of heterogeneity, most of them seem to have been influenced by an Evangelical or Pentecostalist setting. An important part of Wiebe's thesis is his controversial belief that these visions are basically the same as, and thus shed light on, those recorded in the New Testament. It is a pity that in a multidisciplinary study of religion Wiebe largely bypasses theology and the nuanced Roman Catholic and Orthodox traditions of discerning the authenticity of visions and situating them in the larger context of religious growth and practice. -- Copyright ©1997, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

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Book Description Oxford University Press Inc, United States, 1997. Hardback. Condition: New. New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. Visions and apparitions of Jesus have been reported since the earliest days of Christianity, and it is widely known that such events are still being experienced. Surprisingly, however, this book is the first recent critical study of this fascinating phenomenon. Wiebe focuses on modern visions of Jesus, as described to him by thirty contemporary visionaries - most of them ordinary people without prior or subsequent experiences of this kind. He recounts each of the visions in vivid detail, reviews recent biblical scholarship on the subject, and examines current literature on the psychology and neurology of visual hallucinations. He ultimately concludes that contemporary visions of Jesus represent genuine religious experiences of a mystical character and he calls for further discussion of their philosophical and theological implications. Seller Inventory # APC9780195097504

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Book Description Oxford University Press Inc, United States, 1997. Hardback. Condition: New. New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.Visions and apparitions of Jesus have been reported since the earliest days of Christianity, and it is widely known that such events are still being experienced. Surprisingly, however, this book is the first recent critical study of this fascinating phenomenon. Wiebe focuses on modern visions of Jesus, as described to him by thirty contemporary visionaries - most of them ordinary people without prior or subsequent experiences of this kind. He recounts each of the visions in vivid detail, reviews recent biblical scholarship on the subject, and examines current literature on the psychology and neurology of visual hallucinations. He ultimately concludes that contemporary visions of Jesus represent genuine religious experiences of a mystical character and he calls for further discussion of their philosophical and theological implications. Seller Inventory # APC9780195097504

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Book Description Oxford University Press. Hardcover. Condition: New. 288 pages. Dimensions: 9.6in. x 6.4in. x 1.0in.Eve Zelle, a single mother of two, long out of work and in despair over her situation, extended her hand in a moment of desperate prayer and said to God, If I could only touch you, if I could only touch your hand--and when she opened her eyes, she was startled to see Jesus in front of her. He was on his knees holding both my hands with the most compassionate warm eyes that I had ever seen, with strength behind them. Eve had this vision in the late 1980s. Of course, visions of Jesus have been experienced since the earliest days of Christianity, and have been reported throughout the ages--by Catherine of Siena, Ignatius Loyola, Julian of Norwich, Teresa of Avila, and many others. But what are we to make of contemporary instances Are they hallucinations The result of temporary insanity Or are they genuine visions, comparable to the appearances of Christ recorded in the Bible In this thought-provoking volume, Phillip H. Wiebe provides the first critical study of visions of Jesus reported in recent years. Here are intriguing accounts of visions as told by thirty people, most of them ordinary men and women without prior or subsequent experiences of this kind, who remain mystified about having had such experiences. Ernie Hollands, a career criminal born in the slums of Halifax, Nova Scotia, said Christ appeared to him while he was in his cell in Millhaven Penetentiary. Maria Martinez saw Jesus at a busy intersection in Miami, Florida, in 1964. Rose Fairs was lying in bed one morning, wide awake, when the Venetian blinds opened up and the head of Jesus materialized before her. Wiebe recounts each of the visions in vivid detail, and examines the often dramatic changes the apparitions brought about in the lives and beliefs of the subjects. He then explores why these individuals believe their visions were of Jesus, and why they typically believe them to be objective happenings, rather than hallucinations or dreams. Wiebe does weigh the possibility that the experiences could be hallucinatory, and to that end he discusses these phenomena in light of recent literature on the psychology and neurology of visual hallucinations. Additionally, he regards these occurrences from perspectives as diverse as those of biblical scholarship and parapsychology, asking such questions as: Were the subjects only imagining a figure that seemed as real as life How do these experiences differ from dreams Could they be imaginative visions produced by angels How does the Church traditionally regard such phenomena Wiebe concludes that these contemporary visions of Jesus may well represent genuine religious experiences of a mystical character, the implications of which call out for further study and analysis. The fascinating nature of these visions and Wiebes thoughtful and evenhanded approach to these reports add up to a book that will make provocative reading for skeptics and the faithful alike. This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Hardcover. Seller Inventory # 9780195097504

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