By E, Wellisch

ISBN-10: 041521114X

ISBN-13: 9780415211147

First released in 1999. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

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Additional info for International Library of Psychology: Isaac And Oedipus: A STUDY IN BIBLICAL PSYCHOLOGY OF THE SACRIFICE OF ISAAC

Sample text

Infanticide thus was not murder at all but holy sacrifice and a virtuous deed. According to this rationalization the deed was the more virtuous the greater the danger which the father feared from his child. The danger was greatest with his firstborn son. Therefore infanticide of the firstborn s on became the most glorious sacrifice which a father could offer to the gods. This was above all the case when the son was born after many years of childlessness, when he resembled the father closely, and the parents were already advanced in years.

They reach their climax in the fifth and sixth year. The child becomes aware of his genitals. He becomes interested in the differences between boys and girls, the mystery of birth, and, above all, in the intimacy between his parents. It is during this genital phase of psycho-sexual development that the Oedipus Complex mainly develops. In the son, sensuous love towards his mother and hatred towards his father are at its height. 1 These emotions, however, exist together with tender feelings for both parents.

There was something missing in all his valiant and even saintly efforts. There was a tragic lack of insight and moral decision in his thoughts and actions. This was due to his lack of a guiding vision, which was symptomatic of the Greek tragic view of life. Oedipus himself felt that the solution which he found was insufficient and the cause of his suffering. He did not have the insight to express this clearly but in his tortured mind he had the intuition to call his failure a curse. Immediately following his discovery that he himself killed his father he spoke these words: On me is the curse that none but I have laid.

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International Library of Psychology: Isaac And Oedipus: A STUDY IN BIBLICAL PSYCHOLOGY OF THE SACRIFICE OF ISAAC by E, Wellisch


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