Prophecy - Definitions

Definitions

  • Rabbinic scholar Maimonides, suggested that "prophecy is, in truth and reality, an emanation sent forth by Divine Being through the medium of the Active Intellect, in the first instance to man's rational faculty, and then to his imaginative faculty."
  • The former closely relates to the definition by Al-Fârâbî who developed the theory of prophecy in Islam.
  • The Catholic Encyclopedia defines a Christian conception of prophecy as "understood in its strict sense, it means the foreknowledge of future events, though it may sometimes apply to past events of which there is no memory, and to present hidden things which cannot be known by the natural light of reason."

From a skeptical point of view, there is a Latin maxim: prophecy written after the fact vaticinium ex eventu.

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