Gods in the Desert: Religions of the Ancient Near East by Glenn S. Holland

By Glenn S. Holland

Gods within the wasteland explores the interesting spiritual cultures of the traditional close to East. From the mysterious pyramids, tombs, and temples of Egypt to the robust heroes, gods, and legends of Mesopotamia, Glenn Holland publications readers in the course of the early religions which are the basis of a lot of todays significant faiths. Holland compares the religions of historic Egypt, Mesopotamia, and Syria-Palestine, together with Israel and Judah, from the Neolithic period during the conquest of Alexander the nice. He presents a old survey of every zone, then discusses the gods, the rulers, the afterlife, and the worship rituals. This available assessment makes transparent how those religions converged and diverged, and are in detail attached to a number of the religions we realize this day, occasionally in wonderful methods.

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Extra info for Gods in the Desert: Religions of the Ancient Near East

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In that case, human beings might be considered as something like younger siblings who have to grow and mature to eventually become like their elders, the gods. A religious culture’s ideas about how human beings stand in relationship to the gods will have inevitable consequences for that culture’s ideas about the human predicament. What prevents a harmonious relationship between xxx y Introduction: Religion and Its Characteristic Expression human beings and creation on the one hand and the gods on the other?

As a result, even religious innovations tended to be expressed in very traditional terms. So for the most part we can talk about the full range of ancient Egyptian religion as a more or less homogeneous religious culture throughout its history. We should remain mindful that this is a simplification of the actual situation, and we will note significant changes and developments in religious belief or practice over Egypt’s history. The predominant characteristic of ancient Egyptian religious culture, both for its own people and in the eyes of others both past and present, was its aura of serenity and the eternal.

Apart from political disasters in the form of war, invasion, coup, or usurpation, there were various sorts of natural disasters, any of which might trigger famine or plague. At the more personal level, the vast majority of the Egyptian population was subjected on a regular basis to the losses imposed by accident, disease, or death. So there was a dichotomy in how the world was perceived in ancient Egypt, two different stories about the cosmos, the gods, the king, and his people. On the one hand, life in this world under the king’s sway was a mirror of the eternal life of the divine realm: peaceful, joyful, and unchanging.

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