RLGA02H3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 2: Polytheism, Henotheism, Idolatry

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9 Feb 2013
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Religion Lecture 2
When Abraham was striking up a deal with God
o Bargain: Worship properly
o God’s duty: promised a painful death, so when his time comes he’s not
going to have disease or experience discomfort
When Christian Islamic tradition developing we have a focus on individual souls
actions that we’ve done in life and where those actions take us after to
die
The focus on the Abraham story is what we do now in this world and
rewards for following God’s commandments are here; no focus on heaven and
hell
JUDAISM: DEFINITION AND CLASSIFICATION
Jewish traditions is diverse
o Can be an orthodox Jew have problems with having females ordained
as rabbis
o liberal Jew no problems with having females ordained as rabbis
o the word does not automatically presume some religious connotation; a
person might identify themselves jewish but not go to the temple,
synagogue and not participate in the traditions
they are identifying their ethnic background = secular
monotheism
o nature of a divine being
o divine being interacts with us
o islam early history of itself sets the stage for the arrival of
Mohammad by saying Mohammad walks into a scenario where everybody
is practicing a God of wealth, a God of health, a tribal God, regional
God depending on the situation
o the way the Islamic tradition believes is to rewrote that policy: we
don’t need all those different Gods, we have one and can completely
manage everything
o many different gods = polytheism
o monotheism does not makes sense without comparing it to polytheism,
makes it different
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