By Mircea Eliade
This quantity completes the immensely discovered three-volume A historical past of spiritual rules. Eliade examines the flow of Jewish suggestion out of historic Eurasia, the Christian transformation of the Mediterranean zone and Europe, and the increase and diffusion of Islam from nearly the 6th during the 17th centuries. Eliade's gigantic wisdom of prior and current scholarship presents a synthesis that's extraordinary. as well as reviewing fresh interpretations of the person traditions, he explores the interactions of the 3 religions and exhibits their carrying on with mutual impact to be sophisticated yet unmistakable.
As in his past paintings, Eliade can pay specific recognition to heresies, folks ideals, and cults of mystery knowledge, equivalent to alchemy and sorcery, and keeps the dialogue, began in previous volumes, of pre-Christian shamanistic practices in northern Europe and the syncretistic culture of Tibetan Buddhism. those subcultures, he keeps, are as very important because the better-known orthodoxies to an entire knowing of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
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Extra info for A History of Religious Ideas: From Muhammad to the Age of Reforms
One addresses prayers to the moon-called "father" and "grandfather" -to obtain abundance and health, and eclipses are occasions for lamentation. 72 251. Rites, myths, and beliefs of the Old Slavs It would be vain to attempt a reconstruction of the history of Slavic religion. One can, however, distinguish its principal layers and specify their contributions to the fabric of Slavic spirituality. Beyond the IndoEuropean heritage and the Finno-Ugrian and Iranian influences, one can identify still more archaic strata.
The scenario is always the same, but the dramatic episodes vary from one popUlation to another. The shaman mimes the difficulties of the descent, alone or accompanied by his auxiliaries. On arrival, the souls of the dead refuse to enter their new abode, and he must offer them the water-of-life. The seance becomes animated and sometimes grotesque. In other cases, after many an adventure, the shaman arrives in the land of the dead and finds, among the crowd of the spirits, the close relatives of the soul which he brings to entrust to them.
In other words, it is the quality of men which assures the permanence of an institution, and not the inverse. When Augustine finished the City of God in 425, five years before his death, Alaric's "sacrilege" had been forgotten, but the Western Empire was approaching its end. It is above all for the Christians, who, during the following four centuries, had to take part in the disappearance of the Empire and the "barbarization" of western Europe, that Augustine's work proved most salutary. The City of God had radically severed the historical solidarity between the Church and the moribund Roman Empire.
A History of Religious Ideas: From Muhammad to the Age of Reforms by Mircea Eliade