The Axial Age, Dark Green Religion, and the World That Never Was
Publication Year: 2013
Published by: Baylor University Press
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Half Title Page, Title Page, Copyright, Dedication
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A word of explanation may be in order as to how a professional biblical scholar came to write a book that strays so far outside the area of his professional expertise. I first became interested in the two myths that lie at the heart of this book when I came across some of the writings of their propagators, and I noted just how poorly they were engaging with ...
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This book and a closely related one—Seriously Dangerous Religion: What the Old Testament Really Says and Why It Matters (Baylor Univer-sity Press, 2014)—were written over a period of several years, and I need to note my appreciation for both the institutions and the individual On the institutional side, first of all, I need to thank my employ-...
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If we do not put a halt to it, civilization will continue to immiser-ate the vast majority of humans and to degrade the planet until it We all believe at some level in world peace. That is why young women in beauty pageants worldwide have so often asserted their own firm commitment to it, as they have sought the judges’ approval. It is such a ...
1. The Turning Point of History: The Axial Age
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.... . . the most crucial turning point in history; it was then that I believe that we are in a Second Axial Period. We are caught up that of the First Axial Period and that will have comparable far-The myth of the axial age has been widely embraced throughout the world in the course of the last several decades, whether consciously and ...
2. Serious People, Bad Ideas: An Inquisition on the Axial Age
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Egyptian “political theology,” even though the pre-axial past is A Chinese personal existence under the cosmic tao, or an Indian personal existence in acosmistic illumination, is not an Israelite As a way into the discussion that follows, we may begin with a sig-nificant, fairly recent critique of Karl Jaspers’ thought by Johann Arna-...
3. Procrustes and His Bed: Mutilating the Facts to Fit a Theory
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.... . . whatever might have been thought able to lodge both Confu-cius and Isaiah was, from the start, strictly a Procrustean bed. Two writers more than any others have probably been responsible for the popularizing of the Jaspers thesis: John Hick and Karen Armstrong. In this chapter we shall explore their presentations of the thesis and ...
4. Happy Hunting (and Gathering): The Dark Green Golden Age
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Any civilized religion, including Christianity, Judaism, Islam, civilized religions lead people away from their intimate connec-tion to the divinity in the land that is their home and toward the abstract principles of this distant religion. How differently would we relate to trees if instead of singing “Jesus loves me” . . . we, ...
5. Hard Times in the Paleolithic: Constant Battles and Unequal Rights
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...this is part of the obligation of a scientist. But generalizations colonizing, was warfare introduced (and induced) to the far cor-ners of the earth. . . . Such an impression misses the essence Where is the evidence of an earthly paradise just prior to the rise of agriculture, hierarchy, patriarchy, and monotheism? Why should we ...
6. Ecologically Noble Ancestors? Why Spiritual People Don’t Necessarily Look after Their Living Space
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.... . . the appearance of balance between traditional native groups tion densities, lack of markets, and limited technology than it peoples living in idyllic harmony with host ecological systems, at least if by that is meant living in a way that conformed to current Would the lives of modern “primitive peoples” suggest anything like ...
7. You Can’t Always Get What You Want: Desire (and Need) and the Past
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Unless there is some kind of spiritual revolution that can keep abreast of our technological genius, it is unlikely that we will save Why couldn’t I—or any of my colleagues—see the magnitude and the implications of the warfare that was displayed before our eyes The idea that all was peaceful long before writing in the ancient ...
8. The Past Reloaded: A Brief History of Ancient Time
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In the application of Satyagraha, I discovered, in the earliest If “the world that never was” has now been revealed in all its glorious nonexistence, at least to the readers of this book, and the reasons so many other people nevertheless fervently believe in it have been iden-tified, the next question is: How was it, then? If the true story of the ...
9. On Loving Your Dead Neighbor: Violence, Knowledge, and History
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The story about our ancient human past that I have just recounted is, I believe, true. Although it is brief, it is consistent with the evidence. Spe-cifically, it is true (albeit brief) in its presentation of ancient religion and philosophy. It attends to what can and cannot be known about ancient religions and philosophies, it attends to their particulars where they ...
10. On Truth and Consequences: Why Myths about the Past Matter
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...scriptions. . . . Current strategies of environmental and conserva-tion education reflect our faith in such ideals . . . but typically If we really want to restore Yellowstone’s preeminent predator, The mythmakers behind the myths of the axial age and the dark green golden age do violence to the ancient religions and philosophies they ...
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Page Count: 170
Publication Year: 2013