New PDF release: A History of God: The 4,000-Year Quest of Judaism,

By Karen Armstrong

ISBN-10: 0307798585

ISBN-13: 9780307798589

"An admirable and bold paintings of synthesis that would provide perception and delight to hundreds of thousands of lay readers."

In this stunningly clever booklet, Karen Armstrong, one among Britain's most well known commentators on non secular affairs, strains the heritage of ways women and men have perceived and skilled God, from the time of Abraham to the current. From classical philsophy and medieval mysticism to the Reformation, the Enlightenment, and the fashionable age of skepticism, Karen Armstrong plays the close to miracle of distilling the highbrow heritage of monotheism into one fantastically readable quantity, destined to take its position as a vintage.

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Extra resources for A History of God: The 4,000-Year Quest of Judaism, Christianity and Islam

Example text

24 Islam in North Africa The problem arose after the conquest of Spain, when the horizon of the conquest was far away on the Pyrenees, and the Umayyad caliphs at Damascus endeavoured to bring North Africa under regular administration by insisting on the tribute due from conquered Berber peoples who had identified themselves with the conquerors. The rebellion which broke out at Tangier in 739 was intended as a revolution to replace the caliph of the Umayyad dynasty at Damascus with a new Commander of the Faithful.

As a patron, then, he became a centre of attraction in another way, drawing a following which formed part of his wider clientele. Over time, his central position in the neighbourhood would be confirmed by heredity. His holiness would remain in the place where he was buried, which would become a shrine and a place of pilgrimage, while it reappeared in his offspring, who would form a holy lineage. More than that, he might well become the ancestor of an entire tribe of people who claimed descent from him as his disciples or his protégés.

One result was that the distinction between muminun and muslimun, Arabs and clients, lost its force; islam (submission), became Islam, the proper name of the true religion, and Muslims that of the true believers. A second result was that the army, became professional, and sometimes not even Muslim; it was segregated along with the ruler, his household and his ministers in great fortified palaces built outside or apart from the original garrison cities. These palaces, or royal towns, were modelled on the new Abbasid capital Baghdad; in North Africa they first appeared 25 Islam in North Africa around 800 at Fès, newly founded by the Idrisids, and outside Qayrawan, the garrison city which was the capital of Ifriqiya and centre of the Aghlabid dominions.

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A History of God: The 4,000-Year Quest of Judaism, Christianity and Islam by Karen Armstrong

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