Download Peace Be Upon You: Fourteen Centuries of Muslim, Christian, by Zachary Karabell PDF

By Zachary Karabell

In a story that's right away considerate and passionate, hopeful yet with no illusions, award-winning historian Zachary Karabell finds the background of peaceable coexistence between Muslims, Christians, and Jews over the process fourteen centuries till the present-day.

The harsh truth of non secular clash is day-by-day information, and the emerging tensions among the West and Islam convey no symptoms of abating. besides the fact that, the connection among Muslims, Christians, and Jews has now not regularly been marked with animosity; there's additionally a deep and nuanced background of peace.

From the courtroom of caliphs in old Baghdad, the place students engaged in lively debate, to present-day Dubai, the place contributors of every religion paintings facet by means of aspect, Karabell strains the forgotten legacy of tolerance and cooperation those 3 monotheistic religions have enjoyed—a legacy that would be important in any try to locate universal floor and reestablish peace.

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Extra resources for Peace Be Upon You: Fourteen Centuries of Muslim, Christian, and Jewish Conflict and Cooperation

Sample text

The messenger is Muhammad, a man like any other until he was chosen to convey God’s word in Arabic. And the choice is to surrender to God’s will and to the truth of Muhammad’s recitations and thus be saved for eternity. The initial revelations emphasized the extent of God’s power and the degree of human powerlessness in the face of it. Later assembled in the Quran, these verses paint a vivid picture of a world destined to end in a final judgment, and they warn that only those who embrace the message conveyed by Muhammad will be blessed.

A winning poem or a delightful song could earn a poet gold, or horses groomed in the caliph’s stables, or a slave girl for the night. On countless evenings, the court was transformed into an arena for theological debate. Muslim men of learning, schooled in sharia, the law derived from the Quran, offered their wisdom and drew on the philosophical tradition of the ancient Greeks. The works of Aristotle and Plato were translated into Arabic and used not only to enrich Islam but to create new science and new philosophy.

But rivalry and competition do not lead inexorably to war and violence. Christians, Jews, and Muslims have lived constructively with one another. They have taught one another and they have learned from one another. Judaism was central to the formation of Islam, and for a millennium and a half, until the end of World War II, Jews under Muslim rule enjoyed more safety, freedom, and autonomy than they ever did under Christian rule. Muslim states over the course of fourteen centuries have allowed for religious diversity and not insisted on trying to convert those who follow a different creed.

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