World Religions 11/09/2013
What is religion?
Based from latin for religare – tie back
Suggest that it is base for war, for reincarnation, for uniting or dividing
To some, myths says that if the rituals aren’t met, supernatuaral powers would happen
to some, religion is an awareness
to Marx, opiate of the masses.
to Weber, connection to needs
Geertz, system of symbols which acts as powerful reminder of a mood and motivation
to Social scientists, a question for society
Some definition would only compare to Christianity
Some definitions would include a belief of a god or goddess or a combination
Hard to define…
Narratives – central stories that shape an identity
Material – humanmade or natural
Rituals – markings of the major events of life.
Doctrines – belief systems
Institutions – the community, the groups
Ethics – rules of conduct,
Before Common Era
Canon are books that are authorized
office hrs Thursday 12:30 1:30 MC 037
Primary source: original source, object of study
secondary source: a commentary source, source studying the object of study
one page to one and a half
write the introduction
discuss the purpose, the points and the perspectives.
Book called Clarity and Grace
Essay 2 Q1) look at zen Buddhism women can be monks
theravata Buddhism women can’t be monks
Tibetan Buddhism very conservative, only men can be Buddhists, but have been changing in terms of
Q2) Chinese lack religion for communist ideals
but practices and
pure land Buddhism – mandarin Buddhism, many deities
Confucianism – ethical codes
Daoism – ethical codes
Q3) Colonialism and Hinduism
have to take a position rather if Hindu is a bad or good term
Q4) Japanese religions
Shinto very nature based religion
emerges in Japan as a response to the emergence of Buddhism.
Buddhism in Japan
zen and something else Judaism
God made the heaven and the earth.
“And God said, Let there be Light: and there was light. (Genesis 1;13)
The skies and the Earth was created by the forming and moulding of God from a shapeless and formless
Earth and Sky.
In the Hebrew Bible, only light was created from nothing.
The Torah never said that the Earth and Sky was created from absolutely nothing.
Israelite Religion as a covenant
A covenant is an agreement or contract specifying exactly what human behaviours are acceptable to God
and specifying Israelite societal laws. It is understood that historical events are the results of God’s
intervention in response to the Nation of Israel’s behaviour. (Goldberg Sept 18 2013).
Today some jews still believe that God is still with us and intervenes from time to time.
includes the five books of Moses,
The Torah in ancient times are all written by hand on animal skin scroll and held in an ark
The Tanakh is an acronym for the Torah and the Nevim, the ketuvim.
TANAKH – OLD TESTEMENT
Torah – Teachings 5 (exile and return)
Nevim – Prophets 8
Ketuvim – Writings 11
God has no name in the book of exodus.
This God refers “itself” as “ I am who I am” – YHWH ( the tetragrammaton).
YHWH is substituted as ‘Adonay’ (Lord) in the Torah as the 4 letters are sacred Judaism
Source of the Torah came from many different groups and institutions.
The Torah is considered as the soul of Judaism because interpretations are added to the Torah where the 5
books of Moses are the core as the Torah.
Therefore the Torah is still able to be interpreted by ancient and contemporary scholars .
Documentary Hypothesis – Who wrote the Torah
The source of the Torah are identified as groups
1) Yahwists – J – Divine is refered as YAHWEH, the emphasized southern localities the role of Abraham.
probably late in the tehn century BCE
2) Elohists – E the divine is referred as ELOHIM – Northern localities, probably
3) Priestly – P – a late contribution to the Pentateuch, included detailed descriptions and measurements of
the temple, complied after the first temple was destroyed
4) Deuteronomic – D – Compiled during the reign of Josiah
5) Redactor – merged J and E sometime after the destruction of the northern kingdom in Israel
6) R the second major editor – merged J,P,E together, Probably done by Ezra.
Hellenistic – period when Greek was adopted as the major language and culture of the peoples in the
Diaspora – Dispersal – people living outside the ancient land of Israel
Synagogue place of congregational worship and study central to the tradition after temple in Jerusalem
Septuagint – in the 3 century BCE knowledge of Hebrew was rare for the Jewish communities of Egypt for
example and Bible was translated into Greek – Greek Torah
Maccabees – resistance movement rebelled against the Seleucids – recaptured Jerusalem in 164 BCE –
Restored the temple
Jewish religious sects and parties
Sadducees – aristocracy embraced Hellenization , partyl of priestly establishment temple power – read
Torah laws literally
Pharisees – middle classes, land owners, scribes , leaders of the Judean Synagogues – Eventually began
the Rabbinic traditon
Essenes – priests who followed a lfegstyle of aestheticism – lived in desert communities near Qumran –
prepared for “apocalypse” Judaism
Zealots – the political group who rejected Roman authority – rebelled against the Romans in Judea – last
stand at Masada fortress – finally conquered in 73
Samaritans – descendants of the early northern Israel tribes – only accepted the five books of Moses and
rejected the Prophets and the Writings
Christians – Small sect of Jews
Dead Sea Scrolls
Documents written in Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek on papyrus and reeds
Found near Qumran in a cave
Displayed early Christianity and early Islam
Found evidence of discussion during the time of Christ about life of redemption found in a lifestyle of
The Fall of Jerusalem and the Beginning of the Rabbinic Age
After the destruction of the temple, Prayers and ethical behaviour was substituted for animal sacrifices.
Without the temple, they gained new meaning to the teachings and figured out that the Torah contained
ethical rules and therefore living them rules is the lifestyle
The Rabbis continued to carry on the traditions and teachings of the Torah.
The study of Talmud meant learning how to analyze each situation as minutely as possible.
Today contemporary Rabbis look at the Torah to interpret how to live with new tech and modernity.
Glossary of Rabbinic Works
Aggadah anecdotes found in the Talmud and also in Jewish Lore
Halacha – Rabbinic Law found in the Talmud
Midrash – Playful interpretation of the Torah found in the Talmud and in Torah commentary. Midrash is
known as “filling in the gap of the bible”, The story filling.
Mishnah – summary of the Law
Gemarah – The Boday of Aramaic commentary attached to the Hebrew of the Mishnah
The Mishnah and Gemarah makes up the Talmud
The Talmud is studied very literally for people to study.
The Jews study the teachings and interpretations of different rabbis to find a deeper understanding of the
There is now 613 commandments in the Talmud and interpreted by the Rabbis as important and not as
The Rabbis established rules to prevent the inadvertent violation of the laws .
Content of the Talmud and Torah never changes.
But the prayer books change and the Talmud and Torah’s interpretations expands.
Jewish Expulsion and Resettlement in Europe
The Jewish people in the northern European parts became expulsed because of the Christian
predominance in the North
The Jews in the south were able to flourish as they were able to live with the Muslims.
Conversos were found in the 13 and 14 century as Jews were forced to convert to Christians as they were
being persecuted from Spain
Conversos were also on Christopher Columbus’s ship when he sailed to America to escape to a better life.
Jews were encouraged to settle in Turkey as the Sultan felt that Jewish people were needed.
AntiSemitism were prevalent in the crusades and Jews were targeted by blame for many problems that
were not theirs, and progroms (massacre of jews) were started.
Marranos – secret jewish practitioners were burned by the Roman Catholic Church
Despite the dark period for jews, the Jews also experienced higher devotion and learning.
Rabbi Moses Ben Maimon, RAMBAM, wrote the Mishneh Torah, the code of Jewish Law.
was a court physician for the Muslim Egyptian Sultan Salah aldin
wrote The Guide of the Perplexed – aimed to demonstrate reason and faith to show that the biblical religion
is true for those who were doubtful.
gave 13principles of the faith, now found in the Jewish prayer books
The rabbi also wrote “responsa” answers to questions from Jewish communities.
THE GOLDBERG ARGUMENT
From the middle ages to the mid 1800’s, in response to continual European resettlement and expulsion of
Jews form their homelands, rabbis developed new mystical teachings, and proposed new understandings of
evil, of redemption, and of an individual’s relationship to the divine.
Ezekeiel’s Merkavah Vision
the prophet who saw the throne of the divine.
questions the divine and their functions. Judaism
Many types of mysticism were used to get the believer to connect with the divine
Kabbalah – “receiving”
consists of a number of texts from the 13 century so on.
Supposed to explain the
Sohar – the core of the Kabbalah extremely difficult text because of its metaphors. To look for the deeper
meanings of the Torah.
also says that the divine has 10 emanations, balance of the masculine and feminine. – Sefirot
the study of the Kabbala was originally a study for exclusive few.
False Messiah – Shabbatai tzvi
During the Talmud era, there was a great debate of who, what the messiah was .
Luria and his followers believed that the divine sparks would bring the messiah to the world as good deeds
and actions allows the sparks to reach back to the source
The lord poured divine light to the world and the light is found in everything. The light it self wants to return
to the source and good deeds allow such.
God is infinite and how could it make something finite.
False Messiahs were born in a time period where the Jews were being massacred.
Tzvi stepped up to called himself the messiah and began to advertise himself to every Jewish community.
Tzvi influenced by Lurian teachings.
antinomian –moral laws , laws of the rabbi were not very important to follow them. He says that sinful acts
would able to release the holy sparks.
Tzvi was excommunicated, but was charismatic and was able to get followers.
Tzvi was captured and jailed by the ottoman empire due to the fact that the government was afraid of his
Tzvi converted to Islam as a choice to stay alive.
he died and then all his foloowers left as acc to Judaism, death meant not a messiah
Kavanah – Positive Intention in prayer
Ritual (read books) Judaism
Mythic rites – acting out or dramatizing sacred stories and narratives
Rituals are often connected to time observed daily
Toronto, big jewish community Holy Blossom, a big synagogue
Needed in a Synagogue
The Ark – aron Codesh – Torah scroll is housed
a table/podium for reading of the Torah
classrooms and study halls, libraries
large halls and kitchens
Most times jews were distinguished by decreed attire by the government
weren’t allowed to vote, pretty much 3 citizens
First Ghetto in Venice
Jews were forced to lived in Ghetto’s
guards are made to keep the Jews in the Ghettos
the guards were paid by the jews
used to segregated and protected the jews
Haskallah –Jewish Enlightenment (Emancipation of Jews)
1806, Napoleon decreed that the Jews were to be treated as primary citizens and freedom of attire
emancipation – abolition of discriminatory laws placed on Jews and the recognition of their citizenship.
Napoleon played a big part on the equality for the Jews as his ideals were for equality of the people.
Haskallah (enlightenment and education) – supported new found freedoms and adopted enlightenment
does not follow orthodox traditions in clothings, more lenient in certain traditions, but follow the values of
Judaism and looks towards more contemporary integration of Judaism Judaism
growing in certain parts of the world
brought in by the old ideals of the world and let by the pogroms
State of Israel
During the Holocaust, the absence of a Jewish country, Israel, could’ve been a reason why the jews who
left couldn’t land anywhere
Right now, Israel is very liberal country according to its laws.
Israel, acc to the Jews, is Zion, the place Moses led the Jews to live
The problem for some Jews for a Jewish state is that, a Jewish state is only made when the Messiah
Video: ancient codes, modern modes
Contemporary Denominations within Judaism
Orthodox – Modern, Ultra
Conservative – American – Canadian
Reform – Not in Britain – liberal denominations as wel
sprang in Germany, prayer in the Vernacular
removed Hebrew from the service
brought in music
remove some rituals
Now: Emphasize Hebrew, and political action against discrimination,
tradition and innovative in certain aspects
tradition has vote, but not a veto
Principle Periods Judaism
Biblical (1700BCE – 70 CE)
Mythic & semimythic Figures (Moses, King David, King Solomon, etc..)
Babylonian Exile (destruction of the 1 temple) and return
King Cyrus was a mythical king that allow for the Jews to return after the Babylonians were defeated.
Ark of the Covenant – kept in the first temple, supposedly the ten commandments are kept in it.
2 temple built in Jerusalem built in 500BCE and compiled the Tanakh. Wailing Wall now.
Focus on rituals in the temple/ national religion
Seleucid Period (Greek/ Roman Colonialism – Saducees, Pharisees, Zealots (devoted, extremists, freedom
fighters), Essenes (hippies, secluded and made the dead sea scrolls), Samaritans, Christians (Jesus was a
Jewish reformer, Christians at the time concentrated on the Messiah).
Talmudic (Talmudic, or Rabbinical, c70.700)
After the 2 Temple Falls, Jewish Diaspora (C. 70 Jewish revolution caused the Romans to destroy the
temple and exiled the Jews.)
Ashkenazi Jews – went to Spain from the north of the Mediterranean through Turkey.
Sephardic Jews – went to Spain from the south of the Mediterranean through Africa
Focus on the creation of the Talmud/ Jewish Law
A way to keep the culture.
Rabbi – “teacher”, job of rabbi is to teach the Jewish culture to the people. Not really priest, Authority comes
from the learning
From priest to rabbi, from temple to synagogue; from altar to family table.
Responses to adversity = emergence of mysticism
Kabalah, Hasidism, etc.
Status of Jews deterioted with the rise of Chirsianity
The Jews became “problem”
“negative Witness” – the Jews never really thought Jesus of a Messiah
“Usurers” –lent money with interest started by Jews
Pogroms (violence against Jews that was authorized by the government
AntiSemitism was built. Judaism
Tanakh (holy text)
Torah – first 5 books, written by Moses (teachings)
Nevim – Prophets about the exile (8 books)
Ketuvim (writings 11 books)
Covers history of jewish people form 1200BCE to 100 BCE
From 4 Sources
J, E P, D
Finished interpreted at 200 CE and cannot be rewritten.
Page of Talmud
Mishnah Text – Oral Torah, Moses only wrote the 10 main commandments but not the way to live daily life
(mishnah is the rest of the rules, Oral laws).
text made to interpret the Mishnah
2 different Gemarah text
written by a famous rabbi
Hasidism :emerged in Poland, leader Israel ben Eliezer “the Besht” (18 Century)
Find joy in midst of sorrow
sadness is the ignorance of God’s presence
very strict people in terms of the commandments
but very mystic and tries to find connection to God
Pogroms governmental authorization for the killing of jews.
The pogroms gave despair and mysticism was born as a way for hope. Judaism
Modern period 1700present
the Jews placed in the Ghettos
wearing of identification attire
the yellow stars and conical hat
not citizens, not allow to participate in the political
not allow to have jobs
expulsions still happen in eastern Europe
started to become more academic in terms of thinking
Prosecular: the studies of science became more prominent.
secular: non religious
After years of being repressed, the idea of equality spoke out to the Jews.
The Jews believe that secularization was the way to rejoin the modern society.
State of Israel
a “jewish” state
secular and democratic.
established after the holocaust
The more orthodox you are, the more you follow the older interpretations of the law.
rely on interpretations of the law from the Talmudic period.
ultra and modern orthodox.
A response to the reform movement.
vernacular prayer, but moving back into Hebrew
just society – emphasize on enlightenment values
tradition has a vote but not a veto
do not believe in God, but take the traditions very seriously Christianity 11/09/2013
Thesis: Throughout history, Christian groups have defined themselves according to their own unique
formulation of the following four dimensions: issues relating to sacred stories/myths, religious beliefs or
doctrines, religious practices or rituals and the institutional structure of the church. Barry Wilson 1999
Despite the large population of Christians in North America, there is a huge problem of lack of church
attendance and participation today.
Controversial “Jesus Tomb”
note there is little scientific proof that this was Jesus’ tomb despite publicity about its finding.
The New testament is the Canon, the body of sacred texts that is universally accepted and binding of all
Jesus’ life story
John the preacher was Jesus’ teacher who started baptisms
After John was executed, Jesus’ started his own preaching career
Believed that the kingdom of God can be found by breaking the barriers that hides it, Jesus was radical in
Jesus died by crucifixion by the Romans around 30 CE
For his followers, his death became a symbol of atonement and represented redemption
Jesus’ disciples were considered as Jews.
Jesus Galilee Boat
dated to 1 century
The type of boat used by Jesus and his followers many of whom were fishermen. Boats are mentioned at
least fifty times in the Gospels.
The Four Source Theory
an example of higher criticism, the analysis and study of scripture to determine its authorship, date of
composition, literary structure and meaning
study of the canonised part of the New Testament
Sourced back from 70 CE and appealed to nonJewish gentile audience Christianity 11/09/2013
Mark’s gospel and Pauls works : says that the death of Jesus brought a new covenent
brought an attack on Judaism
wish to separate themselves from Judaism as well as appeal to other audience
Matthew and Luke: tried to claim that Christianity is the true legitimate version of Judaism
Four source theory – when we analyse the men of gospels, the sources are all borrowed from each other
and as well as borrowed their materials from Q. all the four sources have a bits found but not every gospel
Q source (quelle): identical sources forming the body of Matthew and Luke but not in Mark
Gospel of John: written around 120135 CE
goes into the cosmic significance of Jesus
presents that the Word that was Jesus
And the Word was present from the beginning
John was concerned about the divine meaning of Christianity.
Christ was the incarnation of the mind of the divine,
emphasised Selfless love Agape
Ritual – Agape feast: Communal meal that was commonly celebrated by early Christians as part of the
Doctrine Apocalyptic: belief in the imminent end of the world
Apologists: ancient group who interpreted the Christian message using Greek philosophy
Narrative – Canon: Fixed list of documents considered Divinely inspired (fixed in 387 CE)
Doctrine – Creed: a set of doctrinal statements summarizing Christian faith and orthodoxy (correct belief)
Ritual Eucharist: sacrament of consecrated bread and wine recreating the last meal of Jesus
Church came form Ecclesia, which mean assemble. Matthew refers to the church as the assembly of God’s
Men and Women equally prayed together, took on leadership roles and celebrated in their homes and at
assemblies the sharing of meals and also baptism.
as Membership grew, there was a need of institutionalization.
the leaders became the ones who were able to perform the rituals
the arms raised to the sky was symbolism of a soul at peace Christianity 11/09/2013
Women were also found in many early Christian paintings
Paul: who wrote in 55 CE who created the early doctrines of Christianity
wrote in a letter to the Christian communities where the resurrection is the most important, where Christ has
to be raised and we have to believe in it.
Paul became converted during his trip to Damascus
the light of Christ shone around him and he stopped what he was doing, saw a heavenly vision of Jesus
which changed his mind and then now believe that Jesus is the son of God and is the Christ.
fish – jesus Christ, son of god, savior
dove – represents a soul that has found peace
alpha and omega – Jesus Christ is the beginning and the end
anchor –symbol of salvation, soul has reached the port of eternity
phoenix – symbol of resurrection
From Sect to Church – Early Doctrine
When Constantine died, Christianity became the dominant belief
Paul became the principal architect of the early church
Gnostic teachings – teachings of true meaning and teachings of Jesus
Nag Hammadi – discovered there a number of Gnostic texts, crucial toe the early writings of Jesus, primary
represent lost or unknown scared writings, esoteric – talking about spiritual and hidden knowledge,
Jesus was an emissary of the spirits to the Gnostic teachings, which says Jesus would return as a spirit, the
church deems this heretic
Gospel of Thomas – supposedly written by Jesus’ brother
Gospel of Mary – presents the notion that Mary Magdalene was a disciple of Christ
The understanding of Christ
Nicene Creed: Standard Catholic doctrine
believe in one God and one lord, Jesus Christ the son of God
the concept of the Trinity Christianity 11/09/2013
God has 3 manifestations
the father, the son, the holy spirit
Internal Doctrinal Feuds and Divisions
a single word was at issue between Greek and Latin Christianity – FILOQUE
1045 Roman Catholic and Eastern Orthodox split apart, today there are fifteen self governing Orthodox
churches worldwide wit their own leaders known as patriarchs, metropolitan or archbishop.
The icon, in Greek Orthodoxy, is regarded as a “window out of the obvious realities of everyday life into the
realm of God.”
equivalent to the divine scriptures
Orthodox Ritual and Theology:
Philokalia – love of the exalted, excellent and beautiful; in other words the transcendent divine source of
life and truth – a central practice for contemplative monks and for the laity, including “unceasing prayer”.
a practice of unceasing prayer, the repetition of different prayers. the repetition of the name Jesus, is way to
purify the heart.
went under spiritual conversion
obsessed from the evil and sins of humans
attitudes against sex and seeing sex as sin.
reconcile between free will with moral actions
thought believe that original sin makes moral human behaviour impossible and says that with the grace of
God we could reach it.
writer and preacher, committed himself to simplicity and celibacy
famous for Confessions
First native individual to be canonized by the church Christianity 11/09/2013
born with small pox scars
became converted to Christianity
Because native, became glorified in Mexico and New Mexico
She was a saint because she was able to cure a little boy from a flesh eating disease when prayed to.
Women’s Grassroots Ascetic Movement of the 13 Century
Ascetics renounced materialism and was devoted to religion
did not want to become part of a convent and wanted to be independent, but wanted to live in community
Most of which were Beguines in Germany who lived in chastity and simplicity
volunteer works and were frugal in terms of how they lived
were prosecuted often
Were women because they were able to avoid being abused by men and husbands
169 Convents were built in the end
way women made vows to each other and didn’t become nuns
In the 13 Century, the idea of the Devil created fear in the people and relics were brought to
counterbalance the fear of evil
were made during the 14 Century
The church was worried about body trafficking and so they outlawed the movement of the Saints.
The church created reliquaries so that they can store the relics and protected.
the going to the holy sites where saints lived or some Christian even has taken placed
most part to see, be, touch the holy sites.
type of penance and take it upon themselves to wear a cross to relive the moment. Christianity 11/09/2013
emerged in a time where the Church was getting richer and corruptions started to form
the printing press took place and was able to print word on paper to start revolutions
the church deemed printing press as heresy
Reform started by Martin Luther and objected the less than egalitarian practices of the church
e.g. selling of the indulgences
selling a ticket to heaven.
placed 95 Theses
removed the priesthood from the pedestal
replaced institutional tradition with the authority of the bible and the inner guidance of the Holy Spirit
no need of an intermediary for God to hear people
Grace alone – scripture alone faith alone
Justification in faith alone
eventually named as a heretic by the church
thought we were all sinful and argued that there would be a model of Protestantism
thought that power should be divided rather than together
work is a holy task
work hard, earn and save, able to give all of yourself to the divine
Reformation of the Catholic Church
Became more disciplinary of the priests Christianity 11/09/2013
affirmed that mass are important
affirmed the status of priests
and reaffirmed celibacy
became open to other denominations but said the Roman Catholic are the main ones
Catechism – any official summary used to teach church doctrine
Grace – unmerited divine assistance on one’s spiritual path, often conceived of as special blessings
received during an intense experience
holy spirit – part of the Trinity – generally understood as the active, guiding presence of the divine
Sacrament – a formal religious ritual regarded as sacred for its ability to convey divine blessing. To
Protestants, sacrament is understood as ineffective in itself and as more of a sign or symbol of spiritual
Heretics and Evil
In 1230, the inquisition were created to scout out heretics and those who are working with the devil.
Malleus Malefiacarum – “hammer of Witches”
to get rid of witches in Germany and eventually all of Europe
a lot of people were killed for being a “witch”
close to 80% of the people killed were women specifically mostly midwifes.
the inquisitors took records and charged women for the food they were given in jail.
During the witch trials, some say it was because of the fear of women and others also say it was because of
Ergot Fungus that gave people hallucinations.
Hildegard Von Bingen
wrote poetry and had visions of the divine, head of a convent, very strict with women in her convent
Julian of Norwich
felt that they had a unique union with God Christianity 11/09/2013
What is the Mystic Experience
1) the experience of a direct union or communion with “ultimate reality” or God
2) the belief that direct knowledge of God, spiritual truth, or ultimate reality can be attained through
subjective experience (as intuition or insight)
a belief in the existence or realities beyond perceptual or intellectual apprehension that are central to being
and directly accessible by subjective experience
the mystic, zero, or void experience – the ecstatic disappearance of self along with everything else
considered by those who have had it to be the most beautiful, blissful, positive, profound, and significant
experience of their lives (Jordan Paper)
traced back to John the Baptist
represents the final dinner with Jesus
breaking of the bread and passing of the wine.
Christmas, the celebration of birth of Christ
Easter, the remembrance of the death of Christ
the arrival of European settlers in the 1800’s
evangelical, Baptist, methodists
the revivalist meetings Christianity 11/09/2013
revivalism: reawakening of spiritual enthusiasm
charismatic preachers which would gather giant crowds who created a lot of followers
a Christianity which focuses on the spirit of the holy spirit
sohms and gospels was born in this time
poetry and speeches were greatly influenced during the birth of preaching and gospel
fundamentalist leaders of these preachers tried to push for more conservative government
Scopes trial science vs bible
new Christian movements in the late 19 and earky 20
Mother Ann Lee, founder of the shakers
proponent of the equality of the sex
vision of heaven on earth by the shaker communities
where everything is to be communal and shared
sense of morality from simplicity and hard work
started by Joseph Smith
American interpretation of Christianity
fastest growing denomination in the western world
have their own interpretation, rituals, and prayers
Theology – Joseph Smith claims that his revelation is a continuation from the biblical revelation. Brought by
the north American aboriginals who carried the revelations of the Lord
a book that carried a book of the new revelations called the book of Mormon
According to the Mormons, Jesus would return to a new Jerusalem in the US
New Vocabulary Christianity 11/09/2013
Ecumenism: the initiatives aimed at greater Christian unity or cooperation, between Christian
Syncretism: the combining of different beliefs often while melding practices of various schools of thought
and various religious traditions
Fundamentalism: strict adherence to specific theological doctrines usually understood as a reaction against
Vatican II Council
During post WWII, Roman Cath grew, but support of its doctrines was declining
Pope Paul VI tried to update the church;
liturgy was reformed, latin was replaced by local languages
priest now has to face the mass
new openness to the church
allowance of lower laity and clergy to have a voice
a dialogue of tolerance
many Catholics tried to even push for more radical reforms
The current pope, Pope Francis is much more liberal, might even call for reform.
important to know: the 60’s and 70’s openness of the church, influenced people and priests brought upon
the liberation theology
Liberation theology states that the struggles of the poor and oppressed, God and Jesus would stand next to
those who were part of them
In the 80’s priests tried to lift political oppression and helped protest against political corruption
The message of Christ is to help others and fight against injustice
Black Theology – type of black liberation
the black community began to gain more independence found in Christ
Christian feminist Theology
seeks to advance equality of men and women in the chuch
Argues that females play an important role in Christianity and tries to get the religion to step away from God
the “father” Christianity 11/09/2013
1) one must believe in the literal scripture
Televangelism in brazil
brazil biggest catholic nation
TV was used to discredit the patron saint of brazil and discredit Catholicism
Universal church of the kingdom of God
Catholics started to get on TV with Pentecostal flavour to fight for their name
Heavy on the holy spirit
Marketing of God and spread the word through media.
Brazilians love celebration and music.
dramatization of the Christ on TV to make money.
Jesus is a star.
Women says that the charismatics allow the use of the bible, and brings a sense of community
The charismatic movement goes well with the conservatives as it still follows the rules within the religion
Those in Liberation theology question the demise of the theology as they find that charismatic movement
did get the support of the poor as it provided simple emotional answers for them
Some people believe that the Catholics follow to much images and does not give an emotional fulfilment
The young are given a lot of choices of churches now so they could shop around.
Issue of LGBT Christian Rights – marriage, Ordination , Equal participation
there are priests and religious people who support the LGBT
symbols of different gods and goddess Christianity 11/09/2013
latin America, carribean, south American all have beliefs that blend Christian beliefs with their own
emphasis on faith healing
When Christianity starts, it is a Jewish reformed movement.
broke from Judaism by the end of the 1 century
Messianic reformed movement
Jesus Christ the messiah
“the spirit of the law” was the main focus of the covenant
Agape – the central message of the law; literally – love in terms of brotherly love… general love of
philosophically about forgiveness
JC born at 3 BCE
dies at 33
born of a virgin
baptized by John the Baptist, who was a messianic
performed miracles and teaches about the new covenant
enters Jerusalem, visits the 2 temple and challenged the old covenant
upset the Jewish people who went to the Romans and asked the Romans to arrest and incarcerate Jesus
resurrected Christianity 11/09/2013
50 days after his crucifixion and all of the disciples started to speak the language of God
Council of Jerusalem
Destruction of the temple
Christians under Roman rule
was a jewish tax collector named Saul that hated Christians
later then got blinded by God and was converted into Christian
his name is also named Paul
travelled while spreading the word of Jesus
expelled from the church because that God is a different God from the Jewish God.
The Great Schism
the break between Roman Catholicism and eastern Orthodox
reformation – the break off of protestants from the Roman Catholics
importants points of Jesus
Jesus is the messiah which was a jewish idea
Chrisitianity is a mix of Judaism, Egyptian, and greek mythologic ideas
Jesus’ death is for the atonement of our sins. Christianity 11/09/2013
four source theory
matthew, mark and luke was written at same time
Mark is written first* because it could be could be found in matthew and luke
Mathew and Luke also had some same material from an unknown source (Q)
mark wrote for converting Jews, Luke wrote for converting Gentiles
Apocrypha the hidden text that do not get canonized.
Gospel of John
Christ is Fully human and Fully divine
to some the first 2 paragraphs of the Gospel of John is considered as the doctrine of Christianity
a belief that when the bread is taken, it transforms into the body of Christ and the wine transforms into the
blood of Christ.
choose to suffer to devote into their religion
From north Africa
he was a bad person, lots of lovers
suddenly converts into Christianity
and devoted into the church
create a lot of early theology especially the division between the church and the state.
Orthodox Catholic Protestant Christianity 11/09/2013
follows a different calendar has mass has service
form of the Eucharist about work ethics
highly formalized form of the Eucharist
very hierarchical with out wine
way more individualistic.
Sainthood (experiential) must perform a miracle after death
St Francis – was a rich noblemen but then lived in a monastic life and helped living creatures and the poor.
created a major school of monastery – francisiscans
St Dominic – created a monastery called the domincans
did not want the church to mediate for God Gender Issues in Monotheistic Traditions 11/09/2013
Patriarchy – Literally means “rule by the fathers” – refers to males in valued positions, women in
sexist – privileging of men and male experience
androcentric – established and developed by men from male perspectives and experience
Within some religions sexist religious beliefs are presented as representing
Divine Will. Therefore these beliefs are used to legitimate patriarchy in society
and the subordination of women in all aspects of religion from leadership to ritual
Image of Eve
bad and satanic
Church antiwomen rules
a woman may not touch the corporal (cloth used in ceremonies).
women should receive communion in their hand on a “house towel”
“In the imgage of God He created him, male and female he created them.” (Hebrew bible)
Christian women mystics
there a lot of female mystics in the past
Areas in which women are working for change
historical research into women and religion
interpretation and exegesis on canonical texts
interpretation and responsa on rabbinic texts
equality in leadership – rabbis – priests
equality in all rituals Gender Issues in Monotheistic Traditions 11/09/2013
creation of new women’s rituals
Four movements of change by women within monotheistic traditions
insist upon gender neutral language in prayers
core ideas of the tradition should remain intact but that sacred materials have been incorrectly interpreted.
looking at the scriptures again to view women as complementary partners.
remodel religious traditions to make them “hospitable” to women
want to change the language and symbols of the deity to include female imagery
refuse to accept sexism in sacred materials
look for rituals that includes women inclusion
pushing traditions to their limits
advocate bringing in other tradition’s language and imagery and ritual
all women focused
may refer to the divine as male but may include a goddess
judge all monotheistic traditions to be irremediably sexist
leave these religions to create their own such as “contemporary goddess” worship which employs rituals
and myths concerning ancient goddesses and ‘mother earth’
New women elements in traditions
for stillbirth, child loss, abuse
new religious items
talits and stuff
new altars Gender Issues in Monotheistic Traditions 11/09/2013
specialized altars that worship female aspecs
Muslim women prayer groups
Women’s words of worship ‘God’ Language
retrieving and adding names of Scriptural women to prayer
changing ‘dead’ metaphor and sexist language
focus on healing of individual and community
composing new words and songs
Video: religions of the book: Women serving religion
preislamic Arabia, women had no rights at all. When Islam teachings came, women were granted at least
the right to live their own life.
generally women is not looked for a leadership role
woman’s position is primarily a wife and a mother
adam was man and was created first
eve was created form adam and for adam to serve him
Eve caused the fall of man
Thealogy – female movement as the letter ‘o’ is masculin Islam 11/09/2013
The Origin’s of Islam
Prophet Muhammad – Backgrounds (pre Muhammad backgrouds)
Arabian – the Age of Ignorance (jahiliyya)
extends back to Jesus Chirst before Muhammad.
or 100 200 years before Muhammad
Value of term
Commercial – the Trade Route
the Silk road pasts through Arabia
trade route brought in a lot of international information
Goods, Traders, and Merchants influenced the Arabian people
the Prophet Muhammad also threatened to obstruct the trade route if his word was not taken
Political – Tribal; bordering empires
majority of the people were nomadic
Clans were made to form tribes which were made from families.
Literary – Power of the word; Poetry
Quran claimed to be an eloquent discourse
Religious – polytheism; Judaism; Christianity; The Hanif Community;
Arabia was full of multiple religions.
the polytheists were aware of the Gospels, Christ, Moses, and the Torah.
the Hanif community were monotheists that attributed themselves to Abraham
Q: Did Prophet Muhammad, by proclaiming Islam, introduce a complete break with the period of Jahiliyya?
Introducing something entirely new
many other religious materials were retained by Muhammad.
571 CE Birth of the Prophet (in Mecca) Islam 11/09/2013
611 CE The Call (in the cave of Hira)
angel appeared to him told him to recite the Words
621 CE Ascension to Heavens (Mi’raj)
622 CE Migration (Hijrah) to Medina
Two tribes were at war
Muhammad was asked to act as a mediator
631 CE The Last Presentation of Qur’an
Muhammad recited the whole Qu’ran
632 CE Death (in Medina)
632662 CE The Rightly Guided Caliphate (Abubakr, Umar, Uthman, and Ali).
4 rulers were made
the rulers were pious and holy by the muslims
3 golden decades
Dispute on the successor to the Prohet (Caliph)
Several leaders were proposed:
Abubakr, proposed by the Meccans (Quraish),
Quraish big clan in Mecca
Ali, by the Meccans (Clan of Hashim)
Sa’ad, by the Medianans,
Abubakr elected as the 1 Caliph; succeded by Umar, Uthman and Ali
reign lasted for 25 years
The supporters of Ali – the Shi’ites – questions the legitimacy of the first 3 caliphs
thought the 3 caliphs did not follow the Qur’an enough
the Shi’tes created different doctrinal materials from the Suni .
Muslim conquests Islam 11/09/2013
by 632 CE: Most of the Arabian Peninsula has be subjugated
1 Caliph Abubakr: hostilities began on Byzantium and Persian borders
2 Caliph Umar: Conquest of Persia, Syria, Egypt, Libya
3 : Central Asia and Afghanistan
By 711 CE: Spain and Italy
Conversions to Islam
Conversions in Occupied middle east was gradual; people were not forced to convert
the Middle East; 20% of the Muslims
After the first 100 years of military expansion, Islam spread mostly though peaceful means (subSaharan
Africa, India, Bangladesh, Malaysia, Indonesia)
By preachers, some people were however forced to convert.
The IndoPak Subcontinent and the Far East: more than 50% of the global Muslim population
After The Sacred History
661750 Umayyad Dynasty (Damascus)
680CE Grandson of the Prophet killed
the Shi’ites most devasted tragedy
they mourn this tragedy
750 – 1258 CE Abbasid Dynasty (Baghdad)
Translations of Greek and Hellenistic Texts on philosophy, science, into Arabic (mid 8th cent CE) also
created a house of wisdom for the translations
the Muslims first intellectual challenge to the civilization
Philosophy questions the idea of God and Choice which was against the main basis of the religion
1258 CE Mongol Invasion
Fragmentation of Political Rule
the Mongols sacked the city and destroyed how the Islam’s main center Islam 11/09/2013
then left to small principalities to lead
16 18 Centuries: Gunpowder Empires
ottoman, Persian, some Indian one
18 Century to date: Modern period; post–colonial
Articles of Faith
Monotheism – Allah the only deity
Muhammad is human, no divine powers
Prophecy – Muhammad: the supreme example; infallible; seal of the prophets; revelation (Wahy)
they believe in Moses, Christ, the Virgin, but not the Crucifixion of Christ.
the prophets are the perfect example for the people to follow
Angels – Subservient to Allah
Scriptures – The Qur’an, the Torah, the Injil, and the Zubur
The Last Day – Paradise; Hell; Purgatory?
Eschatology – the Eleventh Hour
The last Dat will be preceded by Signs:
the appearances to Dajjal ( the Great Deceiver) ; the Antichrsit
Descent of Issa Son of Maryam ( Jesus son of Mary)
Issa son of Maryam will kill the Dajjal, break the cross, and kill the “pig”
For forty years, peace and prosperity will prevail; all humanity converts to islam. after the forty years, that is
the last day
Termination: an Angel (Israfil) will blow the Trumpet that will terminate all life
Resurrection: the 2 sounding of the trumpet will trigger Resurrection
Accountibility: The Balance – The Sirat Bridge
the balance almost like Anubis
the bridge to paradise Islam 11/09/2013
Final Judgement – assigned to Hell or Paradise
Intercession (Shafa’ah) by the Prophet Muhammad, other pious souls will be allowed to speak on the behalf
on some people who needs grace
Mandatory Practices (Pillars of Islam)
testifying that Allah is the only god, and Muhammad is his messenger (shahadah)
Five Daily Prayers – the remembrance of god (AlSalah)
Fasting – to induce piety (AlSaum)
Charity – the purification of the wealthy and the muslim community ( Al Zakah)
Pilgrimage: Support for faith (alhajj)
War: Upholding Islam (Jihad) not a main pillar
Jihad should not be related to terrorism
Jihad is a war that is justified, there are rules for jihad and how different parties of war is treated
Jihad means to uphold Islam, which technically means upholding peace
Revelation to the Prophet Muhammad came down in several ways:
Mediation through the angel Jibril (Gabriel)
giving messages from God to Muhammad
Unmediated inspiration from God
Unmediated Conversation through a veil
in terms of its compilation, revelation is either:
Rehearsed (recited) – placed in the Qur’an
Unrehearsed (unrecited) – part of the Hadith (sayings and the acts of the prophet)
both revelations are binding on Muslims
The Qur’an ( The Recited revelation) Islam 11/09/2013
Word of God; miracle; inimitable; immutable
miracles strengthens the faith, and the proof of the legitimacy of the Qur’an
Oral and Written Tradition
Formation of 114 Suras (Sections)
Compilation of Suras – the Codex of Uthman – in order of decreasing length
Tajwid: the Art of Recitation
Interpreting the Qur’an: Tafsir
The Qur’an is understood in the light of Hadith
two layers of meaning: Contextual/universal
two dimensions of meaning: Apparent/hidden
Vastness and eminence of Tafsir Literature
Genres: Legal, Theological, Mystical, Literary, Linguistic, Sectarian, Apologetic, Scientific and
encyclopaedic (encompassing all genres)
The Haddith (unrecited revelation)
Two parts is consisted
Isnad (chain of authority) – from A who heard it from B from C from D who was there when the prophet said
sayings from the prophet
actions of the prophet
descriptions of the prophet
tacit approvals from the prophet
the prophet doesn’t like lizard but didn’t say anything when someone else ate it
therefore, lizard is ok to eat.
Sunnah (example) of the prophet is contained in Hadith Reports
practices instituted by the Prophet Islam 11/09/2013
Hadith: Anecdotal accounts of the Prohpet’s words, actions, and tacit approvals, through a chain of
narrators reaching back to eye witness
Canonization of Hadith Literature:
Sunnis: 6 compilations (8 and 9 centuries CE)
Shi’ites: Four Compilations (by 11 century CE)
Qur’an and the Sunnah – relationship
the Qur’an is the supreme representation of the will of God
Sunnah explains the Qur’an, sometimes modifies it, even abrogates it
the recitation of Qur’an plays a minor role in religious rituals (except five daily prayers)
It is largely the Sunnah that shapes Muslim Life
the rise of Scripturalism (in modernity)
Islam as “shari’ah”
God is the only lawgiver; and his law is call shari’ah
no boundaries between the religious and the secular
primary source: the Qur’an and the Sunnah
secondary sources: Consensus and Analogy
for anything that the Qur’an and the Sunnah doesn’t cover.
a Consensus would usually be reached for an issue, but in today’s world, without a centralized power, it is
hard to arrive to a consensus.
Ijtiahd: the effort of a scholar to arrive at an opinion; Mujtahids have a right to interpret the sources
Majority lay Muslims follow or imitate the opinions of Mujtahid Taqlid.
Legal (Fiqhi) Schools founded by Mujtahid Scholars
Depending on the scholars and who the individual follows more, the Muslims are free to join any of the
but once they have chosen a school, they must follow it for life. even if the person does not agree with
Abu Hanifa Islam 11/09/2013
Ahmad bin Hanbal
Contents of the Shari’ah
Rites and Rituals; laws of purity; supplications, charity
Socialmarriage, inheritance, contracts
Political – election of ruler, code for judges, law of evidence, and economic laws
penal – punishments for murder, fornications (zina) [punishment is stoning to death for both parties], theft,
slandering, rebellion, apostasy
Law governing war (Jihad or Qital)
Classification of Acts in the Shari’ah
Prohibited – Haram
Despised – Mukruh
Permissible – Mubah
Recommended – Mustahab
Mandatory – Fard
Defining Moments in Muslim History
Translation Movement (9 century CE)
the intellectual challenge
The Crusades (10991204): Islam 11/09/2013
Mongol Invasion (1258 CE)
Challenge to the Caliphate :Baghdad was sacked, the Caliph was executed, sad times for the Muslims
European Colonization (16 century onward)
Challenge to the Muslim Civilization
Muslims became successors to ancient and medieveal civiliazations in Egypt, Syria, and Mesopotamia
Ma’mun (d. 833 CE) set up the House of Wisdom
Translation movement led to the rise of alFalsifa and alKalam
not really Theology in the Christian sense, it is an attempt