John Chirban Edits Collection on Byzantine Medicine and Healing
Holy Cross Orthodox Press of Hellenic College-Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology has published Holistic Healing in Byzantium. This collection of essays, edited by John T. Chirban, explains how the principle of holism, so prevalent in our modern times, is deeply rooted in centuries of healing and medical practice in the Byzantine era. The book demonstrates how Orthodox Christian theology, in contrast to Western Christianity, developed a blend of empirical, scientific, and faith-based methodology for healing. The essays consolidate the picture of a culture in Byzantium that was highly favorable to a synergy between scientific medicine and faith-based healing.
The collection features essays by well-known Byzantine historians and Orthodox theologians: Timothy Miller, Andrew Crislip, Derek Krueger, Demetrios Constantelos, Alice-Mary Talbot, Maria Evangelatou, Rossitza Schroeder, and Metropolitan Maximos of Pittsburgh. Hellenic College-Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology faculty members James Skedros, and Timothy Patitsas also contributed to the volume. In addition to his own contributions to the volume, John Chirban supplied a preface. The foreword was prepared by Jaroslav Pelikan and was submitted for the volume shortly before his death.
Holistic Healing has already received excellent reviews from noted scholars. Margaret Muller, the Director of Byzantine Studies at Dumbarton Oaks has endorsed the volume writing, “This is an important book. Many constituencies will find this book compelling: health care workers, historians of science, students of the New Testament, and Byzantinists. What is important is the book’s holistic approach to the study of healing, hitherto considered under the separate heads of medicine, miracle, and what we used call magic. The book points to the need to rethink not only medicine but Byzantine religion as well. This is the kind of book that changes the way scholars think.”
The collection was put together and edited by John T. Chirban, Professor of Human Development at Hellenic College. Dr. Chirban is also clinical instructor of psychology at Harvard Medical School. He was named Fortieth Anniversary Senior Fellow at the Center for the Study of World Religions at Harvard University. He also serves as Director of the Institute of Medicine, Psychology, and Religion in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
The book is available through the Holy Cross Bookstore of Hellenic College-Holy Cross Greek Orthodox School of Theology.
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