Despite predictions of continuing secularisation, the twenty-first century has witnessed a surge of religious extremism and violence in the name of God. In this powerful and timely book, Jonathan Sacks explores the roots of violence and its relationship to religion, focusing on the historic tensions between the three Abrahamic faiths: Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Drawing on arguments from evolutionary psychology, game theory, history, philosophy, ethics and theology, Sacks shows how a tendency to violence can subvert even the most compassionate of religions. Through a close reading of key biblical texts at the heart of the Abrahamic faiths, Sacks then challenges those who claim that religion is intrinsically a cause of violence, and argues that theology must become part of the solution if it is not to remain at the heart of the problem. This book is a rebuke to all those who kill in the name of the God of life, wage war in the name of the God of peace, hate in the name of the God of love, and practise cruelty in the name of the God of compassion. For the sake of humanity and the free world, the time has come for people of all faiths and none to stand together and declare: Not In God's Name.
What is a caliphate? What is the history of the idea? How is the term used and abused today? In the first modern account of a subject of critical importance today, acclaimed historian Hugh Kennedy answers these questions by chronicling the rich history of the caliphate, from the death of Muhammad to the present. At its height, the caliphate stretched from Spain to the borders of China and was the most powerful political entity in western Eurasia. In an era when Paris and London boasted a few thousand inhabitants, Baghdad and Cairo were sophisticated centres of trade and culture, and the Umayyad and Abbasid caliphates were distinguished by major advances in science, medicine and architecture. By ending with the recent re-emergence of caliphal ideology within fundamentalist Islam, The Caliphate underscores why it is crucial that we know about this form of Islamic government to understand the political ideas of the so-called Islamic State and other Islamist groups in the twenty first century.
This second edition of a popular introduction to the Qur'an includes an essential updated reference guide, including a chronology of the revelation, links to internet resources, and suggestions for further reading. Exploring the Qur'an's reception through history, its key teachings, and its place in contemporary thought and belief, this volume analyzes: the Qur'an as the word of God; its reception and communication by the Prophet Muhammad; the structure and language of the text; conceptions of God, the holy law, and jihad; and Islamic commentaries on Qur'anic teachings through the ages. The Qur'an: The Basics, Second Edition is a concise and accessible introduction.
An 365-day anthology of readings from one of the most influential writers of all time, George MacDonald, compiled by CS Lewis himself. MacDonald was a major Christian writer of the late nineteenth, early twentieth centuries. He influenced nearly everyone who was a major twentieth century writer (including Lewis Carroll, WH Auden, JRR Tolkien, Walter de la Mare, and CS Lewis. Not only was he a pioneer in the fantasy fiction genre, laying the path for people like Tolkien to write Lord of the Rings, but also a major Christian thinker, which influenced Lewis profoundly. Lewis, in fact, wrote that MacDonald was his 'master', and said 'I know hardly any other writer who seems to be closer, or more continually close, to the Spirit of Christ Himself.' These words will challenge and uplift you, and illuminate the faith which underpins all of CS Lewis's popular and enduring writing.
Introduction to Catholic Theology is an accessible but in-depth examination of the ways in which Catholic theology is rooted in and informs Catholic practice. * Weaves together discussion of the Bible, historical texts, reflections by important theologians, and contemporary debates for a nuanced look at belief and practice within the Catholic faith * Provides an overview of all major theological areas, including scriptural, historical, philosophical, systematic, liturgical, and moral theology * Appropriate for students at all levels, assuming no prior knowledge yet providing enough insight and substance to interest those more familiar with the topic * Written in a dynamic, engaging style by two professors with more than 50 years of classroom experience between them
Jane Dawson has written the definitive life of John Knox, a leader of the Protestant Reformation in sixteenth-century Scotland. Based in large part on previously unavailable sources, including the recently discovered papers of Knox's close friend and colleague Christopher Goodman, Dawson's biography challenges the traditionally held stereotype of this founder of the Presbyterian denomination as a strident and misogynist religious reformer whose influence rarely extended beyond Scotland. She maintains instead that John Knox relied heavily on the support of his godly sisters and conferred as well as argued with Mary, Queen of Scots. He was a proud member of the European community of Reformed Churches and deeply involved in the religious Reformations within England, Ireland, France, Switzerland, and the Holy Roman Empire. Casting a surprising new light on the public and private personas of a highly complex, difficult, and hugely compelling individual, Dawson's fascinating study offers a vivid, fully rounded portrait of this renowned Scottish preacher and prophet who had a seismic impact on religion and society.
Were the first scientists hermetic philosophers? What do these occult origins of modern science tell us about the universe today? The Forbidden Universe reveals the secret brotherhood that defined the world, and perhaps discovered the mind of God.
All the pioneers of science, from Copernicus to Newton via Galileo, were inspired by Hermeticism. Men such as Copernicus, Galileo, Newton, Leibniz, Bacon, Kepler, Tycho Brahe - even Shakespeare - owed much of their achievements to basically occult beliefs - the hermetica. In this fascinating study, Lynn Picknett and Clive Prince go in search of the Hermetic origins of modern science and prove that not everything is as it seems and that over the past 400 years there has been a secret agenda behind our search for truth. From the age of Leonardo da Vinci, the influence of hermetic thinking upon the greatest minds in history has been hidden, a secret held by a forbidden brotherhood in search of the mind of God.
Yet this search does not end in history but can be found in the present day - in the contemporary debates of leading evolutionists and thinkers. The significance of this hidden school can hardly be over-emphasised. Not only did it provide a spiritual and philosophical background to the rise of modern science, but its worldview is also relevant to those hungry for all sorts of knowledge even in the twenty-first century. And it may even show the way to reconciling the apparently irreconcilable divide between the scientific and the spiritual. Picknett and Prince go in search of this true foundation of modern rational thought and reveal a story that overturns 400 years of received wisdom.