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This book tells the story of the Prophet Muhammad as an inspirational role model for anyone who wants to be extraordinary.
You will learn how Muhammad shaped his personality as a child, dealt with the universal challenges of adolescence while a teenager, and then emerged as a leader in his community as a young adult. The book deliberately avoids the language of historical narration used in typical biographies of the Prophet in favor of a more informal, down-to-earth approach.
In this book, the reader will get a completely different view of Muhammad and hopefully will see how Muhammad addressed our own daily challenges, inspiring us to excel in confronting these challenges.
Christianity, the faith of almost three-quarters of the diverse South African population, has long been pushed to the margins of historical writing on South Africa, yet for more than two centuries it has shaped South African society and its diverse subcultures. This tightly constructed and vigorously written book - a collaboration of thirty specialists working in seven countries - situates Christianity for the first time in the broad political, social, and economic context of South African history; it also traces a variety of religious movements and their histories both before and during apartheid.
Perhaps nowhere in the African continent is the study of Christianity as fascinating, complex, or contentious as in South Africa. In the twentieth century South Africans have used Christian doctrine both to justify and to oppose doctrines of racial segregation, and Christian leadership provided much of the impetus for the founding of the African National Congress in 1912. But the history of South African Christianity is found for the most part in local, or "micro" narratives, while the highly elaborated "macro" narratives of colonialism, capitalism, and liberation - the backbone of the conventional histories of South Africa - assign Christianity a marginal role, or no role at all.
This volume seeks to insert the Christian micro-narratives into the macro-narratives of South African history, providing for the first time an in-depth, cohesive look at Christianity in South Africa.
Days after the assassination of his prime minister in the middle of Rome in November 1848, Pope Pius IX found himself a virtual prisoner in his own palace. The wave of revolution that had swept through Europe now seemed poised to put an end to the popes' thousand-year reign over the Papal States, if not indeed to the papacy itself. Disguising himself as a simple parish priest, Pius escaped through a back door. Climbing inside the Bavarian ambassador's carriage, he embarked on a journey into a fateful exile. Only two years earlier Pius's election had triggered a wave of optimism across Italy. After the repressive reign of the dour Pope Gregory XVI, Italians saw the youthful, benevolent new pope as the man who would at last bring the Papal States into modern times and help create a new, unified Italian nation. But Pius found himself caught between a desire to please his subjects and a fear-stoked by the cardinals-that heeding the people's pleas would destroy the church. The resulting drama-with a colorful cast of characters, from Louis Napoleon and his rabble-rousing cousin Charles Bonaparte to Garibaldi, Tocqueville, and Metternich-was rife with treachery, tragedy, and international power politics. David Kertzer is one of the world's foremost experts on the history of Italy and the Vatican, and has a rare ability to bring history vividly to life. With a combination of gripping, cinematic storytelling, and keen historical analysis rooted in an unprecedented richness of archival sources, The Pope Who Would Be King sheds fascinating new light on the end of rule by divine right in the west and the emergence of modern Europe.
\"It\'s almost upon us \" yelled a frantic voice as the ship neared the iceberg. \"God\'s Will be done, \" prayed Mother Marie. If God wanted her to drown in the icy Atlantic Ocean before ever reaching Canada, His Holy Will be done. Yet perhaps . . . This book tells what happened next, plus the many other adventures that met the Sisters who brought the Holy Catholic Faith to Canada. 152 Pp. PB. Impr. 18 Illus.
The end of life has never meant the extinction of hope. People have always yearned for, and often been terrified by, continuance beyond the horizon of mortality. Over many centuries various imaginative and sometimes macabre ideas have been devised to explain what happens to human beings after death. As Philip C. Almond reveals in his new and zestful history of the hereafter, whichever image or metaphor has been employed by visionaries, writers, philosophers, or theologians, it has tended to oscillate between two contrary poles: the resurrection of the body and the immortality of the soul. This pendulum movement of ideas and language reflects the contending influence of the Hebrew Bible and of ancient Greek thought and the often tense encounters, skirmishes, and compromises between them. Exploring this polarity, and boldly ranging across time and space, Almond takes his readers on a remarkable journey to worlds of both torment and delight. He travels to the banks of the Styx, where Charon the grizzled boatman ferries a departing spirit across the river only if a coin is first placed for payment on the tongue of its corpse. He transports us to the legendary Isles of the Blessed, walks the hallowed ground of the Elysian Fields, and plumbs the murky depths of Tartarus, primordial dungeon of the Titans. The pitiable souls of the damned are seen to clog the soot-filled caverns of Lucifer's domain even as the elect ascend to Paradise. Including medieval fears for the fate of those consumed by cannibals, early modern ideas about the Last Day, and modern scientific explorations of the domains of the dead, this first full treatment of the afterlife in Western thought evokes many rich imaginings of Heaven, Hell, Purgatory, and Limbo.
On the 500th anniversary of Luther's rebellion, this spectacular global history traces the revolutionary faith that shaped the modern world. Five hundred years ago Protestant Christianity began with one stubborn monk. Today, it includes a billion people across the globe. The upheaval Martin Luther triggered inspired one of the most creative and destructive movements in human history. Protestants is the story of the men and women who made and remade this quarrelsome faith. Fired by life-changing encounters with their God, they set out for every corner of the world, demanded alarming new freedoms and experimented in new systems of government. Inspired by their newly accessible Bibles, they transformed their inner lives, a transformation that spilled over into social upheavals and political revolutions. In the process, they have played decisive roles on both sides of the great ideological battles of modern times. Protestants have been both for and against liberalism, imperialism, slavery, Nazism, communism, apartheid and women's rights. Yet beneath it all is a shared passion for God, a vital belief in the principle of self-determination and a readiness to fight for their beliefs. Protestantism's global story is still only just beginning. As this ever-changing faith puts down deep roots across contemporary China, Africa, and Latin America, Alec Ryrie's dazzling history explores how its restless energy made and is still making the modern world.
One of the world's foremost commentators on religious affairs on the history (and destiny) of the world's most misunderstood religion. In the public mind, Islam is a religion of extremes: it is the world's fastest growing faith; more than three-quarters of the world's refugees are Islamic; it has produced government by authoritarian monarchies in Saudi Arabia and ultra-republicans in Iran. Whether we are reading about civil war in Algeria or Afghanistan, the struggle for the soul of Turkey, or political turmoil in Pakistan or Malaysia, the Islamic context permeates all these situations. Karen Armstrong's elegant and concise book traces how Islam grew from the other religions of the book, Judaism and Christianity; introduces us to the character of Muhammed; and demonstrates that for much of its history, the religion has been a force for enlightenment that promoted liberties for women and allowed the arts and sciences to flourish. ISLAM shows how this progressive legacy is today often set aside as the faith struggles to come to terms with the economic and political weakness of most of its believers and with the forces of modernity itself.
"Islamic art" can be a challenging term in an ever-changing art world. Through the exploration of a wide array of media-from painting, sculpture, and photography to video and multimedia-an internationally renowned group of scholars, collectors, artists, and curators tackles questions such as whether the art has to come from the Middle East, whether it must have a religious component, and, indeed, whether the work of art must be made by a Muslim. Based on a series of papers presented at the 7th Biennial Hamad bin Khalifa Symposium on Islamic Art in 2017, the essays in this volume grapple with these questions from a range of viewpoints. Taken together, these texts, including beautiful illustrations of major works by contemporary artists from the Muslim world, invoke a lively discussion of how the arts of the Islamic lands link the past with the present and the future.
This title, released in association with Essential Christian, will accompany a set of seminars for Spring Harvest 2018 under the overall theme of 'Only the Brave'. The church has been under attack from its inception, but certain struggles seemed to threaten its very existence. In this inspiring book, Dr Matthew Knell celebrates some of these key figures who have kept the church alive in the midst of great adversity, exploring three major periods of persecution from the early church to the present day. This fascinating journey begins with Irenaeus of Lyon, who battled courageously against the theological threat of Gnosticism, followed by Basil of Caesarea, who defended the church from attacks on its spirituality. The book concludes with the modern Chinese church, many members of which have been attacked and even martyred for their faith. Using the examples of these defenders and many others, Dr Knell inspires readers to stand firm in the face of adversity as the global church continues to experience persecution.
'With emotional and psychological insight, Barton unlocks this sleeping giant of our culture. In the process, he has produced a masterpiece.' Sunday Times The Bible is the central book of Western culture. For the two faiths which hold it sacred, it is the bedrock of their religion, a singular authority on what to believe and how to live. For non-believers too, it has a commanding status: it is one of the great works of world literature, woven to an unparalleled degree into our language and thought. This book tells the story of the Bible, explaining how it came to be constructed and how it has been understood, from its remote beginnings down to the present. John Barton describes how the narratives, laws, proverbs, prophecies, poems and letters which comprise the Bible were written and when, what we know - and what we cannot know - about their authors and what they might have meant, as well as how these extraordinarily disparate writings relate to each other. His incisive readings shed new light on even the most familiar passages, exposing not only the sources and traditions behind them, but also the busy hands of the scribes and editors who assembled and reshaped them. Untangling the process by which some texts which were regarded as holy, became canonical and were included, and others didn't, Barton demonstrates that the Bible is not the fixed text it is often perceived to be, but the result of a long and intriguing evolution. Tracing its dissemination, translation and interpretation in Judaism and Christianity from Antiquity to the rise of modern biblical scholarship, Barton elucidates how meaning has both been drawn from the Bible and imposed upon it. Part of the book's originality is to illuminate the gap between religion and scripture, the ways in which neither maps exactly onto the other, and how religious thinkers from Augustine to Luther and Spinoza have reckoned with this. Barton shows that if we are to regard the Bible as 'authoritative', it cannot be as believers have so often done in the past.
Volg Andre Pretorius 500 jaar na die begin van die Kerkhervorming op 31 Oktober 1517, in die spore van die groot Hervormers - Martin Luther en Johannes Calvyn. Hy besoek die plekke waar die sleutelsepisodes van daardie grootse rewolusie afgespeel het en sien hoe daardie plekke nou lyk. Hy gaan na die plekke waar die godsdiensoorloe van die Hervormingsera ondenkbare verwoesting gesaai het, maar ook na die plekke waar die kreatiwiteit gebore uit die Protestantse verstaan van woorde en musiek van die grootste kunswerke van die mensdom geinspireer het. Hy bring dit alles terug na sy eie plattelandse Suid-Afrikaanse, Calvinistiese opvoeding.
In The Politics of Faith, Timothy L. Wesley examines the engagement of both northern and southern preachers in politics during the American Civil War, revealing an era of denominational, governmental, and public scrutiny of religious leaders. Controversial ministers risked ostracism within the local community, censure from church leaders, and arrests by provost marshals or local police. In contested areas of the Upper Confederacy and Border Union, ministers occasionally faced deadly violence for what they said or would not say from their pulpits. Even silence on political issues did not guarantee a preacher s security, as both sides arrested clergymen who defied the dictates of civil and military authorities by refusing to declare their loyalty in sermons or to pray for the designated nation, army, or president. The generation that fought the Civil War lived in arguably the most sacralized culture in the history of the United States. The participation of church members in the public arena meant that ministers wielded great authority. Wesley outlines the scope of that influence and considers, conversely, the feared outcomes of its abuse. By treating ministers as both individual men of conscience and leaders of religious communities, Wesley reveals that the reticence of otherwise loyal ministers to bring politics into the pulpit often grew not out of partisan concerns but out of doctrinal, historical, and local factors. The Politics of Faith sheds new light on the political motivations of homefront clergymen during wartime, revealing how and why the Civil War stands as the nation s first concerted campaign to check the ministry s freedom of religious expression.
Stories portraying heretics ('minim') in rabbinic literature are a central site of rabbinic engagement with the 'other'. These stories typically involve a conflict over the interpretation of a biblical verse in which the rabbinic figure emerges victorious in the face of a challenge presented by the heretic. In this book, Michal Bar-Asher Siegal focuses on heretic narratives of the Babylonian Talmud that share a common literary structure, strong polemical language and the formula, 'Fool, look to the end of the verse'. She marshals previously untapped Christian materials to arrive at new interpretations of familiar texts and illuminate the complex relationship between Jews and Christians in Late Antiquity. Bar-Asher Siegal argues that these Talmudic literary creations must be seen as part of a boundary-creating discourse that clearly distinguishes the rabbinic position from that of contemporaneous Christians and adds to a growing understanding of the rabbinic authors' familiarity with Christian traditions.
The life and times of the most important theological work of medieval Christendom Thomas Aquinas (TM)s Summa theologiae holds a unique place in Western religion and philosophy. Written between 1266 and 1273, it was conceived by Aquinas as an instructional guide for teachers and novices and a compendium of all the approved teachings of the Catholic Church. It synthesizes an astonishing range of scholarship, covering hundreds of topics and containing more than a million and a half words "and was still unfinished at the time of Aquinas (TM)s death. Bernard McGinn, one of today (TM)s most acclaimed scholars of medieval Christianity, traces the remarkable life of this iconic work, examining Aquinas (TM)s reasons for writing it, its subject matter, and the novel way he organized it. McGinn looks at the influence of Aquinas (TM)s masterpiece on such giants of medieval Christendom as Meister Eckhart, its ridicule during the Enlightenment, the role of the Summa in the post "Vatican II church, and the book (TM)s enduring relevance today.
Christian monasticism emerged in the Egyptian deserts in the fourth century AD. This introduction explores its origins and subsequent development and what it aimed to achieve, including the obstacles that it encountered; for the most part making use of the monks' own words as they are preserved (in Greek) primarily in the so-called Sayings of the Desert Fathers. Mainly focussing on monastic settlements in the Nitrian Desert (especially at Scete), it asks how the monks prayed, ate, drank and slept, as well as how they discharged their obligations both to earn their own living by handiwork and to exercise hospitality. It also discusses the monks' degree of literacy, as well as women in the desert and Pachomius and his monasteries in Upper Egypt. Written in straightforward language, the book is accessible to all students and scholars, and anyone with a general interest in this important and fascinating phenomenon.
Keeping lonely vigil in a remote hermit's cave, wading naked into the sea to pray, climbing sacred mountains, sleeping on a deserted holy isle, sheltering under a sacred tree, and even preaching to birds and other wildlife: all these were the work of holy men and women in ancient Britain. A love of creation is at the heart of this religious instinct, which has left its mark on the British landscape in numerous unexpected ways. The world's first nature reserve was set up on Inner Farne Island in the 7th century by St Cuthbert, an instinct to preserve that finds its modern counterpart in the National Trust and our national parks. Even our well-known love of pets finds its earliest expression in the ways of hermits, who would gather wildlife around their dwellings and fend off royal hunting parties. This book will challenge perceptions of our relationship with the landscape, with animals, with the elements and ultimately with the body itself.
The Apostolic Fathers represents the best and latest in German-language scholarship on the Apostolic Fathers--now available in this exclusive English edition. Crafted by an expert team of scholars, The Apostolic Fathers offers introductions to the works comprising this early Christian corpus, fully equipped with cutting-edge discussion of important topics including theological profiles, intertextuality, intellectual milieus, and anti-Jewish polemics. The foreword by Wilhelm Pratscher and closing chapter by Jorg Ulrich cap off this learned handling of the Fathers, locating them within the history of scholarship, even while pointing the way for new avenues of study.
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