A vow (from Old High German gilubida "vow") is a solemn promise to adhere to a rule or to fulfill a resolution (for example a pilgrimage ). The term is used in a religious context, but also for solemn secular promises such as oaths or oaths , especially in Switzerland and Austria.
Vows as a religious promise
Outside of the Judeo-Christian tradition, there are vows as religious promises in ancient Egypt, in ancient Rome or in Eastern religions.
The Old Testament vow
In the Old Testament, the vow is a "common and naturally practiced type of behavior towards God".
In the 4th book of Moses in the 30th chapter (Num. 30) the unconditional obligation of vows by men and those that are conditioned by them is dealt with, because the consent of the father or the man depends on the validity of vows by women.
Roman Catholic Church
In the Catholic Church , a vow is understood as the well-considered and free promise made to God, which refers to a higher good and whose fulfillment must be possible. Against the criticism of Reformed theology, the Catholic Church holds fast to the value of vows and sees them as an act of "worship", "an act of devotion through which the Christian consecrates himself to God or promises him a good work."
Often it is the promise of a life according to the evangelical counsels . A distinction is made between public vows (e.g. religious vows ), which are accepted by a church official (e.g. the bishop or superior ) on behalf of the church, and private vows. Private vows can be dispensed with for good (“just”) reasons .
The vow in Eastern religions
- Mahavratam - a vow of yoga practitioners
- Bodhisattva vows - a vow of Chinese and Japanese Buddhism as well as the bodhisattva vows in Vajrayana
Vows as profane promises
- Peter Lippert: Vows. In: Christian Schütz (Ed.): Practical Lexicon of Spirituality. Herder, Freiburg i.Br. u. a. 1992, ISBN 3-451-22614-6 , Sp. 491 (492)
- KKK  No. 2102
- KKK  No. 2102
- See canons 1192, 1196 and especially 1197 of the CIC . (in Latin) , (in German)
- Günter Lanczkowski , Horst Dietrich Preuss, Hayim Goren Perelmuter, Karl Suso Frank a . a .: Vows I. Religious history II. Old Testament III. Judaism IV. Catholic tradition and teaching V. Reformation period VI. Ethical VII. Practical-theological. In: Theologische Realenzyklopädie 12 (1984), pp. 300-316 (comprehensive scientific overview)
- Peter Lippert : Vows. In: Christian Schütz (Ed.): Practical Lexicon of Spirituality. Herder, Freiburg i.Br. u. a. 1992, ISBN 3-451-22614-6 , Sp. 491-494