An analysis of the role of religion in wars and death throughout the history of mankind

History is full of religious wars and some of them have continued for years and killed many.

An analysis of the role of religion in wars and death throughout the history of mankind

Notes and References The first difficulty in writing about this subject is that the term 'Jew' has been used during the last years with two rather different meanings. To understand this, let us imagine ourselves in the year Then the universally accepted meaning of the term 'Jew' basically coincided with what the Jews themselves understood as constituting their own identity.

This identity was primarily religious, but the precepts of religion governed the details of daily behavior in all aspects of life, both social and private, among the Jews themselves as well as in their relation to non-Jews.

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It was then literally true that a Jew could not even drink a glass of water in the home of a non-Jew. And the same basic laws of behavior towards non-Jews were equally valid from Yemen to New York. Whatever the term by which the Jews of may be described — and I do not wish to enter into a metaphysical dispute about terms like, 'nation' and 'people' 1 — it is clear that all Jewish communities at that time were separate from the non-Jewish societies in the midst of which they were living.

An analysis of the role of religion in wars and death throughout the history of mankind

However, all this was changed by two parallel processes — beginning in Holland and England, continuing in revolutionary France and in countries which followed the example of the French Revolution, and then in the modern monarchies of the 19th century: It should be noted that both developments were simultaneous, and that the latter is even more important, albeit less widely known, than the former.

Since the time of the late Roman Empire, Jewish communities had considerable legal powers over their members. Not only powers which arise through voluntary mobilization of social pressure for example refusal to have any dealing whatsoever with an excommunicated Jew or even to bury his bodybut a power of naked coercion: In many countries — Spain and Poland are notable examples — even capital punishment could be and was inflicted, sometimes using particularly cruel methods such as flogging to death.

All this was not only permitted but positively encouraged by the state authorities in both Christian and Muslim countries, who besides their general interest in preserving 'law and order' had in some cases a more direct financial interest as well.

For example, in Spanish archives dating from the 13th and 14th centuries there are records of many detailed orders issued by those most devout Catholic Kings of Castile and Aragon, instructing their no less devout officials to co-operate with the rabbis in enforcing observance of the Sabbath by the Jews.

Because whenever a Jew was fined by a rabbinical court for violating the Sabbath, the rabbis had to hand nine tenths of the fine over to the king — a very profitable and effective arrangement.

Similarly, one can quote from the responsa written shortly before by the famous Rabbi Moshe Sofer of Pressburg now Bratislavain what was then the autonomous Hungarian Kingdom in the Austrian Empire, and addressed to Vienna in Austria proper, where the Jews had already been granted some considerable individual rights.

The bonds of one of the most closed of 'closed societies', one of the most totalitarian societies in the whole history of mankind were snapped. This act of liberation came mostly from outside; although there were some Jews who helped it from within, these were at first very few.

This form of liberation had very grave consequences for the future. Just as in the case of Germany according to the masterly analysis of A.

Taylor it was easy to ally the cause of reaction with patriotism, because in actual fact individual rights and equality before the law were brought into Germany by the armies of the French Revolution and of Napoleon, and one could brand liberty as 'un-German', exactly so it turned out to be very easy among the Jews, particularly in Israel, to mount a very effective attack against all the notions and ideals of humanism and the rule of law not to say democracy as something 'un-Jewish' or 'anti-Jewish' — as indeed they are, in a historical sense — and as principles which may be used in the 'Jewish interest', but which have no validity against the 'Jewish interest', for example when Arabs invoke these same principles.

Implications

This has also led — again just as in Germany and other nations of Mitteleuropa — to a deceitful, sentimental and ultra-romantic Jewish historiography, from which all inconvenient facts have been expunged.

So one will not find in Hannah Arendt's voluminous writings, whether on totalitarianism or on Jews, or on both, 4 the smallest hint as to what Jewish society in Germany was really like in the 18th century: Nor can one find in the numerous English-language 'Jewish histories' the elementary facts about the attitude of Jewish mysticism so fashionable at present in certain quarters to non-Jews: The great authorities, such as Gershom Scholem, have lent their authority to a system of deceptions in all the 'sensitive' areas, the more popular ones being the most dishonest and misleading.

But the social consequence of this process of liberalization was that, for the first time since about AD6 a Jew could be free to do what he liked, within the bounds of his country's civil law, without having to pay for this freedom by converting to another religion.

The freedom to learn and read books in modern languages, the freedom to read and write books in Hebrew not approved by the rabbis as any Hebrew or Yiddish book previously had to bethe freedom to eat non-kosher food, the freedom to ignore the numerous absurd taboos regulating sexual life, even the freedom to think — for 'forbidden thoughts' are among the most serious sins — all these were granted to the Jews of Europe and subsequently of other countries by modern or even absolutist European regimes, although the latter were at the same time antisemitic and oppressive.

Nicholas I of Russia was a notorious antisemite and issued many laws against the Jews of his state. But he also strengthened the forces of 'law and order' in Russia — not only the secret police but also the regular police and the gendarmerie — with the consequence that it became difficult to murder Jews on the order of their rabbis, whereas in pre Poland it had been quite easy.

For example, in the late s a 'Holy Rabbi' Tzadik in a small Jewish town in the Ukraine ordered the murder of a heretic by throwing him into the boiling water of the town baths, and contemporary Jewish sources note with astonishment and horror that bribery was 'no longer effective' and that not only the actual perpetrators but also the Holy Man were severely punished.

The Metternich regime of pre Austria was notoriously reactionary and quite unfriendly to Jews, but it did not allow people, even liberal Jewish rabbis, to be poisoned.

Duringwhen the regime's power was temporarily weakened, the first thing the leaders of the Jewish community in the Galician city of Lemberg now Lvov did with their newly regained freedom was to poison the liberal rabbi of the city, whom the tiny non-Orthodox Jewish group in the city had imported from Germany.

One of his greatest heresies, by the way, was the advocacy and actual performance of the Bar Mitzvah ceremony, which had recently been invented. Liberation from Outside In the last years, the term 'Jew' has therefore acquired a dual meaning, to the great confusion of some well-meaning people, particularly in the English-speaking countries, who imagine that the Jews they meet socially are 'representative' of Jews 'in general'.Atheists and secular humanists consistently make the claim that religion is the #1 cause of violence and war throughout the history of mankind.

One of hatetheism's key cheerleaders, Sam Harris, says in his book The End of Faith that faith and religion are "the most prolific source of violence in our. Israel Shahak was a resident of the Warsaw Ghetto and a survivor of Bergen-Belsen.

He arrived in Palestine in and lived there until his death in He was an outspoken critic of the state of Israel and a human rights activist. History is full of religious wars and some of them have continued for years and killed many.

Religion of History's Most Influential People

Here is the list of 10 of the biggest wars that were fought over religious conflicts and differences. Second War of Kappel.

An analysis of the role of religion in wars and death throughout the history of mankind

This religious war was also a result of religious conflicts between Catholic cantons and Protestants. Judaism, monotheistic religion developed among the ancient plombier-nemours.comm is characterized by a belief in one transcendent God who revealed himself to Abraham, Moses, and the Hebrew prophets and by a religious life in accordance with Scriptures and rabbinic traditions.

Judaism is the complex phenomenon of a total way of life for the Jewish people, comprising theology, law, and innumerable. According to the Bible, God killed or authorized the killings of up to 25 million people.

Chapter One: A Closed Utopia?

This is the God of which Jesus was an integral part. War is a state of armed conflict between states, governments, societies and informal paramilitary groups, such as mercenaries, insurgents and plombier-nemours.com is generally characterized by extreme violence, aggression, destruction, and mortality, using regular or irregular military forces.

Warfare refers to the common activities and characteristics of types of war, or of wars in general.

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