The Myth of Religious Violence

The Myth of Religious Violence
Author: William T Cavanaugh
Publsiher: Oxford University Press
Total Pages: 296
Release: 2009-09-03
ISBN 10: 9780199736645
ISBN 13: 0199736642
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

The Myth of Religious Violence Book Review:

The idea that religion has a dangerous tendency to promote violence is part of the conventional wisdom of Western societies, and it underlies many of our institutions and policies, from limits on the public role of religion to efforts to promote liberal democracy in the Middle East. William T. Cavanaugh challenges this conventional wisdom by examining how the twin categories of religion and the secular are constructed. A growing body of scholarly work explores how the category 'religion' has been constructed in the modern West and in colonial contexts according to specific configurations of political power. Cavanaugh draws on this scholarship to examine how timeless and transcultural categories of 'religion and 'the secular' are used in arguments that religion causes violence. He argues three points: 1) There is no transhistorical and transcultural essence of religion. What counts as religious or secular in any given context is a function of political configurations of power; 2) Such a transhistorical and transcultural concept of religion as non-rational and prone to violence is one of the foundational legitimating myths of Western society; 3) This myth can be and is used to legitimate neo-colonial violence against non-Western others, particularly the Muslim world.

Fields of Blood

Fields of Blood
Author: Karen Armstrong
Publsiher: Knopf Canada
Total Pages: 432
Release: 2014-10-28
ISBN 10: 0307401987
ISBN 13: 9780307401984
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

Fields of Blood Book Review:

From the renowned and bestselling author of A History of God, a sweeping exploration of religion's connection to violence. For the first time in American history, religious self-identification is on the decline. Some have cited a perception that began to grow after September 11: that faith in general is a source of aggression, intolerance and divisiveness--something bad for society. But how accurate is that view? And does it apply equally to all faiths? In these troubled times, we risk basing decisions of real and dangerous consequence on mistaken understandings of the faiths subscribed around us, in our immediate community as well as globally. And so, with her deep learning and sympathetic understanding, Karen Armstrong examines the impulse toward violence in each of the world's great religions. The comparative approach is new: while there have been plenty of books on jihad or the Crusades, this book lays the Christian and the Islamic way of war side by side, along with those of Buddhism, Hinduism, Confucianism, Daoism and Judaism. Each of these faiths arose in agrarian societies with plenty of motivation for violence: landowners had to lord it over peasants and warfare was essential to increase one's landholdings, the only real source of wealth before the great age of trade and commerce. In each context, it fell to the priestly class to legitimize the actions of the state. And so the martial ethos became bound up with the sacred. At the same time, however, their ideologies developed that ran counter to the warrior code: around sages, prophets and mystics. Within each tradition there grew up communities that represented a protest against the injustice and violence endemic to agrarian society. This book explores the symbiosis of these 2 impulses and its development as these confessional faiths came of age. The aggression of secularism has often damaged religion and pushed it into a violent mode. But modernity has also been spectacularly violent, and so Armstrong goes on to show how and in what measure religions, in their relative maturity, came to absorb modern belligerence--and what hope there might be for peace among believers in our time.

The European Wars of Religion

The European Wars of Religion
Author: Wolfgang Palaver,Harriet Rudolph & Dietmar Regensburger
Publsiher: Routledge
Total Pages: 280
Release: 2016-12-05
ISBN 10: 1317032764
ISBN 13: 9781317032762
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

The European Wars of Religion Book Review:

In recent years religion has resurfaced amongst academics, in many ways replacing class as the key to understanding Europe's historical development. This has resulted in an explosion of studies revisiting issues of religious change, confessional violence and holy war during the early modern period. But the interpretation of the European wars of religion still remains largely defined by national boundaries, tied to specific processes of state building as well as nation building. In order to more thoroughly interrogate these concepts and assumptions, this volume focusses on terms repeatedly used and misused in public debates such as "religious violence" and "holy warfare" within the context of military conflicts commonly labelled "religious wars". The chapters not only focus on the role of religion, but also on the emerging state as a driver of the escalation of violence in the so-called age of religious war. By using different methodological and theoretical approaches historians, philosophers, and theologians engage in an interdisciplinary debate that contributes to a better understanding of the religio-political situation of early modern Europe and the interpretation of violent conflicts interpreted as religious conflicts today. By adopting a multi-disciplinary approach, new and innovative perspectives are opened up that question if in fact religion was a primary driving force behind these conflicts.

The Destructive Power of Religion

The Destructive Power of Religion
Author: J. Harold Ellens
Publsiher: Greenwood Publishing Group
Total Pages: 261
Release: 2007
ISBN 10: 9780275997083
ISBN 13: 0275997081
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

The Destructive Power of Religion Book Review:

Select chapters from the controversial 4-volume set examining the influence of sacred texts shaping human nature, society, politics and military strategy across the last 3,000 years.

The Myth of Persecution

The Myth of Persecution
Author: Candida Moss
Publsiher: Harper Collins
Total Pages: 320
Release: 2013-03-05
ISBN 10: 0062104543
ISBN 13: 9780062104540
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

The Myth of Persecution Book Review:

In The Myth of Persecution, Candida Moss, a leading expert on early Christianity, reveals how the early church exaggerated, invented, and forged stories of Christian martyrs and how the dangerous legacy of a martyrdom complex is employed today to silence dissent and galvanize a new generation of culture warriors. According to cherished church tradition and popular belief, before the Emperor Constantine made Christianity legal in the fourth century, early Christians were systematically persecuted by a brutal Roman Empire intent on their destruction. As the story goes, vast numbers of believers were thrown to the lions, tortured, or burned alive because they refused to renounce Christ. These saints, Christianity's inspirational heroes, are still venerated today. Moss, however, exposes that the "Age of Martyrs" is a fiction—there was no sustained 300-year-long effort by the Romans to persecute Christians. Instead, these stories were pious exaggerations; highly stylized rewritings of Jewish, Greek, and Roman noble death traditions; and even forgeries designed to marginalize heretics, inspire the faithful, and fund churches. The traditional story of persecution is still taught in Sunday school classes, celebrated in sermons, and employed by church leaders, politicians, and media pundits who insist that Christians were—and always will be—persecuted by a hostile, secular world. While violence against Christians does occur in select parts of the world today, the rhetoric of persecution is both misleading and rooted in an inaccurate history of the early church. Moss urges modern Christians to abandon the conspiratorial assumption that the world is out to get Christians and, rather, embrace the consolation, moral instruction, and spiritual guidance that these martyrdom stories provide.

On the Significance of Religion in Conflict and Conflict Resolution

On the Significance of Religion in Conflict and Conflict Resolution
Author: Christine Schliesser,S. Ayse Kadayifci-Orellana,Pauline Kollontai
Publsiher: Routledge
Total Pages: 150
Release: 2020-07-02
ISBN 10: 1000167534
ISBN 13: 9781000167535
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

On the Significance of Religion in Conflict and Conflict Resolution Book Review:

In this ground-breaking volume, the authors analyze the role of religion in conflict and conflict resolution. They do so from the perspectives of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, while bringing different disciplines into play, including peace and conflict studies, religious studies, theology, and ethics. With much of current academic, political, and public attention focusing on the conflictive dimensions of religion, this book also explores the constructive resources of religion for conflict resolution and reconciliation. Analyzing the specific contributions of religious actors in this field, their potentials and possible problems connected with them, this book sheds light on the concrete contours of the oftentimes vague “religious factor” in processes of social change. Case studies in current and former settings of violent conflict such as Israel, post-genocide Rwanda, and Pakistan provide “real-life” contexts for discussion. Combining cutting-edge research with case studies and concrete implications for academics, policy makers, and practitioners, this concise and easily accessible volume helps to build bridges between these oftentimes separated spheres of engagement.

The Myth of Religious Neutrality

The Myth of Religious Neutrality
Author: Roy A. Clouser
Publsiher: Unknown
Total Pages: 397
Release: 2005
ISBN 10:
ISBN 13: UOM:39015060852491
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

The Myth of Religious Neutrality Book Review:

Written for undergraduates, the educated layperson, and scholars in fields other than philosophy, The Myth of Religious Neutrality offers a radical reinterpretation of the general relations between religion, science, and philosophy. This new edition has been completely revised and updated by the author.

Theopolitical Imagination

Theopolitical Imagination
Author: William T. Cavanaugh
Publsiher: A&C Black
Total Pages: 126
Release: 2002-01-01
ISBN 10: 9780567088772
ISBN 13: 0567088774
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

Theopolitical Imagination Book Review:

A critique of modern Western civilization, including contemporary concerns of consumerism, capitalism, globalization, and poverty, from the perspective of a believing Catholic. Responding to Enlightenment and Postmodernist views of the social and economic realities of our time, Cavanaugh engages with contemporary concerns--consumerism, late capitalism, globalization, poverty--in a way reminiscent of Rowan Williams (Lost Icons), Nicholas Boyle (Who Are We Now?) and Michel de Certeau. "Consumption of the Eucharist," he argues, "consumes one into the narrative of the pilgrim City of God, whose reach extends beyond the global to embrace all times and places." He develops the theme of the Eucharist as the basis for Christian resistance to the violent disciplines of state, civil society and globalization.

Migrations of the Holy

Migrations of the Holy
Author: William T. Cavanaugh
Publsiher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
Total Pages: 200
Release: 2011-02-10
ISBN 10: 0802866093
ISBN 13: 9780802866097
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

Migrations of the Holy Book Review:

Whether one thinks that religion continues to fade or has made a comeback in the contemporary world, there is a common notion that religion went away somewhere, at least in the West. But William Cavanaugh argues that religious fervor never left it has only migrated toward a new object of worship. In Migrations of the Holy he examines the disconcerting modern transfer of sacred devotion from the church to the nation-state. In these chapters Cavanaugh cautions readers to be wary of a rigid separation of religion and politics that boxes in the church and sends citizens instead to the state for hope, comfort, and salvation as they navigate the risks and pains of mortal life. When nationality becomes the primary source of identity and belonging, he warns, the state becomes the god and idol of its own religion, the language of nationalism becomes a liturgy, and devotees willingly sacrifice their lives to serve and defend their country. Cavanaugh urges Christians to resist this form of idolatry, to unthink the inevitability of the nation-state and its dreary party politics, to embrace radical forms of political pluralism that privilege local communities and to cling to an incarnational theology that weaves itself seamlessly and tangibly into all aspects of daily life and culture. William Cavanaugh continues to provide leadership and vision in the field of political theology. He addresses essential questions about the religious status of the nation-state, the political character of the church, and how the tradition of Christian political thought might be brought to bear upon contemporary politics. . . . Unfolds a theological response to present political conditions and a political response to our theological condition. Luke Bretherton King s College London Another vigorous but distinct voice in the burgeoning conversation about the role of religion generally and the church specifically in political life. . . . Worth a careful read. Robert Benne

God Is Not Great

God Is Not Great
Author: Christopher Hitchens
Publsiher: McClelland & Stewart
Total Pages: 320
Release: 2008-11-19
ISBN 10: 1551991764
ISBN 13: 9781551991764
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

God Is Not Great Book Review:

Christopher Hitchens, described in the London Observer as “one of the most prolific, as well as brilliant, journalists of our time” takes on his biggest subject yet–the increasingly dangerous role of religion in the world. In the tradition of Bertrand Russell’s Why I Am Not a Christian and Sam Harris’s recent bestseller, The End Of Faith, Christopher Hitchens makes the ultimate case against religion. With a close and erudite reading of the major religious texts, he documents the ways in which religion is a man-made wish, a cause of dangerous sexual repression, and a distortion of our origins in the cosmos. With eloquent clarity, Hitchens frames the argument for a more secular life based on science and reason, in which hell is replaced by the Hubble Telescope’s awesome view of the universe, and Moses and the burning bush give way to the beauty and symmetry of the double helix.

Everything Voluntary

Everything Voluntary
Author: Skyler J. Collins
Publsiher: Skyler J. Collins
Total Pages: 286
Release: 2012-05-07
ISBN 10: 1477419896
ISBN 13: 9781477419892
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

Everything Voluntary Book Review:

From the Introduction: The mainstream political, education, and parenting philosophies all have one thing in common: promoting the domination of one group of people over another. In politics, this is the ruling class, i.e., politicians and bureaucrats, over the ruled. In education and parenting, this is teachers or parents over their children. Someone's interest prevails over someone else's, and in these arenas, violent solutions prevail over peaceful ones. The purpose of this book is to question the “virtues” of human relations based on violent coercion, and to promote instead human relations based on mutual consent. For it is under one type or the other that human interaction in all arenas of life necessarily fall. From large-scale social organization and maintenance to the small-scale family unit, it is the position of this editor that peace and prosperity are most likely achieved through relations based on mutual consent. This book should prime the reader to develop an understanding and commitment to the political, social, and life philosophy called “voluntaryism.” Back Cover Endorsements: "A wonderful selection of first-rate essays on one of the most important principles of civilized life—cooperating with people instead of controlling, taxing, dragooning, bullying or bombing them. Bravo, Skyler Collins!" - Lawrence W. Reed, author of Striking The Root, and president of the Foundation for Economic Education. "This collection is especially valuable because it comes from the mind of someone who became convinced of the case for liberty -- and so we have here some of the most intellectually compelling literature of the modern libertarian world. The application to family life presents a serious challenge even to those who embrace political and economic liberty, but puzzle about how to apply these principles in their own life. In this, there is a collection about high thought and real action, and that's a beautiful combination." - Jeffrey Tucker, author of It's a Jetson's World and Bourbon for Breakfast, executive editor of Laissez Faire Books, and former editorial vice president of the Ludwig von Mises Institute. "This book contains a very useful, well-organized, and carefully selected set of essays centered around the idea of human liberty, what Hazlitt called 'cooperatism' [Foundations of Morality, p. xii] and what the editor calls 'voluntaryism.' In addition to covering the basics of politics and economics, the book contains a large number of essays devoted to education and parenting. This decision makes perfect sense, when we realize that our children and the ideas they are exposed to are the greatest hope for liberty in generations to come. I highly recommend this excellent volume, for beginners, activists, and seasoned libertarians." - Stephan Kinsella, author of Against Intellectual Property, and director of The Center for the Study of Innovative Freedom.

The Blackwell Companion to Religion and Violence

The Blackwell Companion to Religion and Violence
Author: Andrew R. Murphy
Publsiher: John Wiley & Sons
Total Pages: 632
Release: 2011-04-20
ISBN 10: 1444395734
ISBN 13: 9781444395730
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

The Blackwell Companion to Religion and Violence Book Review:

The timely Blackwell Companion to Religion and Violence brings together an international, interdisciplinary group of scholars who provide a coherent state of the art overview of the complex relationships between religion and violence. This companion tackles one of the most important topics in the field of Religion in the twenty-first century, pulling together a unique collection of cutting-edge work A focused collection of high-quality scholarship provides readers with a state-of-the-art account of the latest work in this field The contributors are broad-ranging, international, and interdisciplinary, and include historians, political scientists, religious studies scholars, sociologists, anthropologists, theologians, scholars of women's and gender studies and communication

The Myth of a Christian Nation

The Myth of a Christian Nation
Author: Gregory A. Boyd
Publsiher: Zondervan
Total Pages: 224
Release: 2009-05-18
ISBN 10: 031056591X
ISBN 13: 9780310565918
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

The Myth of a Christian Nation Book Review:

The church was established to serve the world with Christ-like love, not to rule the world. It is called to look like a corporate Jesus, dying on the cross for those who crucified him, not a religious version of Caesar. It is called to manifest the kingdom of the cross in contrast to the kingdom of the sword. Whenever the church has succeeded in gaining what most American evangelicals are now trying to get – political power – it has been disastrous both for the church and the culture. Whenever the church picks up the sword, it lays down the cross. The present activity of the religious right is destroying the heart and soul of the evangelical church and destroying its unique witness to the world. The church is to have a political voice, but we are to have it the way Jesus had it: by manifesting an alternative to the political, “power over,” way of doing life. We are to transform the world by being willing to suffer for others – exercising “power under,” not by getting our way in society – exercising “power over.”

The Darkening Age

The Darkening Age
Author: Catherine Nixey
Publsiher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Total Pages: 384
Release: 2018-04-17
ISBN 10: 0544800931
ISBN 13: 9780544800939
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

The Darkening Age Book Review:

A New York Times Notable Book of 2018 “Searingly passionate…Nixey writes up a storm. Each sentence is rich, textured, evocative, felt…[A] ballista-bolt of a book.” —New York Times Book Review In Harran, the locals refused to convert. They were dismembered, their limbs hung along the town’s main street. In Alexandria, zealots pulled the elderly philosopher-mathematician Hypatia from her chariot and flayed her to death with shards of broken pottery. Not long before, their fellow Christians had invaded the city’s greatest temple and razed it—smashing its world-famous statues and destroying all that was left of Alexandria’s Great Library. Today, we refer to Christianity’s conquest of the West as a “triumph.” But this victory entailed an orgy of destruction in which Jesus’s followers attacked and suppressed classical culture, helping to pitch Western civilization into a thousand-year-long decline. Just one percent of Latin literature would survive the purge; countless antiquities, artworks, and ancient traditions were lost forever. As Catherine Nixey reveals, evidence of early Christians’ campaign of terror has been hiding in plain sight: in the palimpsests and shattered statues proudly displayed in churches and museums the world over. In The Darkening Age, Nixey resurrects this lost history, offering a wrenching account of the rise of Christianity and its terrible cost.

Princeton Readings in Religion and Violence

Princeton Readings in Religion and Violence
Author: Mark Juergensmeyer,Margo Kitts
Publsiher: Princeton University Press
Total Pages: 256
Release: 2011-10-10
ISBN 10: 1400839947
ISBN 13: 9781400839940
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

Princeton Readings in Religion and Violence Book Review:

An anthology that examines the historical and contemporary relationship between religion and violence This groundbreaking anthology provides the most comprehensive overview for understanding the fascinating relationship between religion and violence—historically, culturally, and in the contemporary world. Bringing together writings from scholarly and religious traditions, it is the first volume to unite primary sources—justifications for violence from religious texts, theologians, and activists—with invaluable essays by authoritative scholars. The first half of the collection includes original source materials justifying violence from various religious perspectives: Hindu, Chinese, Christian, Muslim, Jewish, and Buddhist. Showing that religious violence is found in every tradition, these sources include ancient texts and scriptures along with thoughtful essays from theologians wrestling with such issues as military protection and pacifism. The collection also includes the writings of modern-day activists involved in suicide bombings, attacks on abortion clinics, and nerve gas assaults. The book's second half features well-known thinkers reflecting on why religion and violence are so intimately related and includes excerpts from early social theorists such as Durkheim, Marx, and Freud, as well as contemporary thinkers who view the issue of religious violence from literary, anthropological, postcolonial, and feminist perspectives. The editors' brief introductions to each essay provide important historical and conceptual contexts and relate the readings to one another. The diversity of selections and their accessible length make this volume ideal for both students and general readers.

Alpha God

Alpha God
Author: Hector A. Garcia
Publsiher: Prometheus Books
Total Pages: 287
Release: 2015-03-10
ISBN 10: 1633880214
ISBN 13: 9781633880214
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

Alpha God Book Review:

This book uses evolutionary psychology as a lens to explain religious violence and oppression. The author, a clinical psychologist, examines religious scriptures, rituals, and canon law, highlighting the many ways in which our evolutionary legacy has shaped the development of religion and continues to profoundly influence its expression. The book focuses on the image of God as the dominant male in Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. This traditional God concept is seen as a reflection of the “dominant ape” paradigm so evident in the hierarchical social structures of primates, with whom we have a strong genetic connection. The author describes the main features of male-dominated primate social hierarchies— specifically, the role of the alpha male as the protector of the group; his sexual dominance and use of violence and oppression to attain food, females, and territory; in-group altruism vs. out-group hostility (us vs. them); and displays of dominance and submission to establish roles within the social hierarchy. The parallels between these features of primate society and human religious rituals and concepts make it clear that religion, especially its oppressive and violent tendencies, is rooted in the deep evolutionary past. This incisive analysis goes a long way toward explaining the historic and ongoing violence committed in the name of religion.

Violence and the Sacred

Violence and the Sacred
Author: René Girard
Publsiher: A&C Black
Total Pages: 352
Release: 2005-04-13
ISBN 10: 0826477186
ISBN 13: 9780826477187
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

Violence and the Sacred Book Review:

René Girard (1923-) was Professor of French Language, Literature and Civilization at Stanford Unviersity from 1981 until his retirement in 1995. Violence and the Sacred is Girard's brilliant study of human evil. Girard explores violence as it is represented and occurs throughout history, literature and myth. Girard's forceful and thought-provoking analyses of Biblical narrative, Greek tragedy and the lynchings and pogroms propagated by contemporary states illustrate his central argument that violence belongs to everyone and is at the heart of the sacred. Translated by Patrick Gregory>

The Republic Unsettled

The Republic Unsettled
Author: Mayanthi L. Fernando
Publsiher: Duke University Press
Total Pages: 328
Release: 2014-08-27
ISBN 10: 0822376288
ISBN 13: 9780822376286
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

The Republic Unsettled Book Review:

In 1989 three Muslim schoolgirls from a Paris suburb refused to remove their Islamic headscarves in class. The headscarf crisis signaled an Islamic revival among the children of North African immigrants; it also ignited an ongoing debate about the place of Muslims within the secular nation-state. Based on ten years of ethnographic research, The Republic Unsettled alternates between an analysis of Muslim French religiosity and the contradictions of French secularism that this emergent religiosity precipitated. Mayanthi L. Fernando explores how Muslim French draw on both Islamic and secular-republican traditions to create novel modes of ethical and political life, reconfiguring those traditions to imagine a new future for France. She also examines how the political discourses, institutions, and laws that constitute French secularism regulate Islam, transforming the Islamic tradition and what it means to be Muslim. Fernando traces how long-standing tensions within secularism and republican citizenship are displaced onto France's Muslims, who, as a result, are rendered illegitimate as political citizens and moral subjects. She argues, ultimately, that the Muslim question is as much about secularism as it is about Islam.

The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise

The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise
Author: Darío Fernández-Morera
Publsiher: Open Road Media
Total Pages: 288
Release: 2016-02-09
ISBN 10: 1504034694
ISBN 13: 9781504034692
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise Book Review:

Scholars, journalists, and politicians uphold Muslim-ruled medieval Spain—“al-Andalus”—as a multicultural paradise, a place where Muslims, Christians, and Jews lived in harmony. There is only one problem with this widely accepted account: it is a myth. In this groundbreaking book, Northwestern University scholar Darío Fernández-Morera tells the full story of Islamic Spain. The Myth of the Andalusian Paradise shines light on hidden features of this medieval culture by drawing on an abundance of primary sources that scholars have ignored, as well as archaeological evidence only recently unearthed. This supposed beacon of peaceful coexistence began, of course, with the Islamic Caliphate’s conquest of Spain. Far from a land of tolerance, Islamic Spain was marked by religious and therefore cultural repression in all areas of life, and by the marginalization of Christians and other groups—all this in the service of social control by autocratic rulers and a class of religious authorities. As professors, politicians, and pundits continue to celebrate Islamic Spain for its “multiculturalism” and “diversity,” Fernández-Morera sets the record straight—showing that a politically useful myth is a myth nonetheless.

Political Violence in Ancient India

Political Violence in Ancient India
Author: Upinder Singh
Publsiher: Harvard University Press
Total Pages: 540
Release: 2017-09-25
ISBN 10: 0674981286
ISBN 13: 9780674981287
Language: EN, FR, DE, ES & NL

Political Violence in Ancient India Book Review:

Gandhi and Nehru helped create a myth of nonviolence in ancient India that obscures a troubled, complex heritage: a long struggle to reconcile the ethics of nonviolence with the need to use violence to rule. Upinder Singh documents the tension between violence and nonviolence in ancient Indian political thought and practice, 600 BCE to 600 CE.