Religion and Society in the Near East, | Berkey’s focus in The Formation of Islam is on ideas and institutions and their social and political context. Jonathan Berkey’s book surveys the religious history of the peoples of the Near East from roughly to CE. The opening chapter examines the religious. Khalid Yahya Blankinship; Jonathan P. Berkey. The Formation of Islam: Religion and Society in the Near East, – (Themes in Islamic.

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Others have credited competition with Islam for encouraging the compilation of definitive Zoroastrian texts.

Further east, Iran borders on the culturally and religiously diverse world of India, and even apart from any prehistoric connections between the Indo-European settlers of the two regions, commercial and strategic imperatives drew them together, particularly under the Sasanians, who cultivated mercantile links to the sub-continent.

George Allen and Unwin, —711: University of Michigan Press, Although he seems to have glossed over some of the more nuanced questions regarding economic structures and social class, Hodgson drew in a general way upon the sociological analysis of Max Weber; and — if we allow ourselves at the outset to paint with a rather broad brush — it will serve us as well, in part because it informs some of the most basic questions about the origins and character of Islam.

Many of the Jews of Egypt were, or had as their forebears, soldiers, as the settlement of Jewish military colonies continued throughout the Ptolemaic period. For the early period there are problems with sources which were mostly written in the context of later debates and divides. Thereupon this revelation has come down and this prophecy has appeared in the form of myself, Mani, the envoy of the true God in the Land of Babylon.

From the standpoint of the religious traditions which are studied in this book, the year BCE may be somewhat arbitrary, since the subsequent centuries were, at least in the Near East, equally decisive regarding the articulation of identifiable religious traditions.

The Transformation of a Culture Cambridge: The inescapable fact that much of the peninsula consists of desert produced a radically different social and political dynamic, particularly in those regions dominated by bedouin. Article PDF first page preview.

Some Iraqi Christians later concluded that the sectarian strife contributed to the ease with which the Muslims took the country, or, in more theological language, that God permitted the Arabs to triumph as a punishment for Christian disunity.


Dodds used the phrase to describe the third century, but it is just as descriptive of the ensuing centuries. Here again, it is important to stress that Jews did not always act as a politically passive minority. It is doubtful that Judaism in the Hellenistic and late antique periods produced as active a missionary movement as did, say, Christianity, but proselytization was known and approved, even by beriey of the rabbis whose opinions are expressed in the Talmud, at least through the fourth century CE.

In an ethnically mixed area such as Iraq, however, Zoroastrianism was primarily the religion of the ruling elite, Iranians belonging to the upper classes and serving the Sasanian state. Click here to sign up. The Jewish community of Iraq was socially diverse, consisting of townsmen and scholars but overwhelmingly of laborers, peasants, and slaves, and as such knew considerable interaction with the non-Jewish communities of the country.

Dumbarton Oaks,35— A number of factors contributed to its appeal to the population, including several doctrinal parallels with the late pagan cults patronized both by native Egyptians and by Greeks and Romans resident in the country, ths as their emphasis on redemption and sacramental mysteries, and perhaps especially the traditional Egyptian pre- occupation with immortality as in, for example, the popular cult of Osiris, god of the Nile and king of the dead.

My library Help Advanced Book Search. For while Christ was yet in the fornation, the Roman empire received its power from God as the servant of the dispensation which Christ introduced, since at that very time the accession was proclaimed of the unending line of the Augusti by whose command a census jonahhan made which embraced the whole world.

Modrzejewski, The Jews of Egypt: Penguin,and W. Pagans of various stripes could be found virtually everywhere. Lying just beyond the easternmost Roman provinces, it provided a natural refuge for Jews fleeing Roman persecution; and Jews, in their wake, brought Christianity.

Jonathan Berkey

The religions of late antiquity 23 the doctrine at Ephesus was Cyril; both Athanasius and Cyril were patriarchs of Alexandria. He covers the development of Shi’ism, including the separation of its Isma’ili and Twelver strands, and the formation of Sunni traditionalism “what we now call Sunni Islam is, in a way, simply non-Shi’i Islam” around shared ideas about law, ijma or the doctrine of consensus, and the role and authority of the ulama: And by at least the end of the sixth century, the leaders of those schools, the geonim, had 10 On the size of the Jewish population in Iraq, see Jacob Neusner, Talmudic Judaism in Sasanian Babylonia Leiden: At any rate, by the end of the Sasanian period, the Jews of Mesopotamia had known massacres and meddling in their internal affairs by the imperial authorities; the office of the exilarch had been periodically suppressed, and the academies which were so central to Jewish religious life had been temporarily closed.


Wilfred Griggs, Early Egyptian Christianity: From monotheism, it is but a short step to an explicit, and potentially militant, universalism. The Brrkey Publication Society,— Oxford University Press,—, and Jontahan H. Harcourt Brace Jovanovich,52; H. A second point concerns the universalist character and claims of the religions of late antiquity.

It is probably best to begin by stepping behind verkey more sharply-delineated religious boundaries of later centuries, and remembering that Judaism as we know it fofmation, like the other 3 Wayne A.

The emphasis on conversion suggests once again the growing importance to the men and women of late antiquity of formal expressions of religious identity. Plutarch, for example, identified Yahweh with the Greek god Dionysos.

Enviado por Jubi flag Denunciar. His authority was shared, however, with the rabbis, who first came to Mesopotamia from Palestine in the wake of the Bar Kochba revolt.

The formation of Islam: religion and society in the Near East,

By the rise of Islam, for example, the Jewish community of Babylonia was well over jonahan thousand years old. By the early fifth century, the movement was in full swing. They puzzled many, including the patriarch Cyril of Jerusalem. Ignatius, bishop of Antioch around the turn of the first century, composed letters condemning, not Jewish Christians, but Gentile Christians who adopted Jewish practices.

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University of California Press,46—60; P. In recent years, several scholars have cast serious doubt upon the accuracy of the traditional picture of pre- and early-Islamic CHAPTER 3 Arabia before Islam 39 Arabian society, much of it relying on those late Muslim sources.

Moses Hadas New York: The Sasanians, even at the height of their conflict with Rome in the sixth century, relentlessly borrowed from Byzantine th everything from bath-houses to systems of taxation, and the shah Khusrau I Anushirvan r.

Two general trends begkey the religions of the end of the classical and the late antique worlds deserve special mention. Fowden, Empire to Commonwealth, Even if the Arabian crucible is important, what exactly does that mean?

Knopf,— Williams and Jjonathan,; cf.