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The end of animal sacrifice – History of religion

By |2018-04-21T12:09:34+00:00August 23rd, 2017|Religion|

Sacrificial procession (Pitsa, ca. 530 BC) People probably began to do animal sacrifice around the time they began farming and keeping domesticated animals, about 10,000 BC. They were certainly sacrificing animals to their gods all over Europe and Asia by 3000 BC. That's when we first have paintings and carvings and written stories about it. For seven thousand years or so, animal sacrifice [...]

What is the Trinity? Christianity – Religion

By |2018-04-09T23:07:28+00:00August 23rd, 2017|Religion, Romans|

Father, Son, and Holy Ghost (Perugino, about 1482 in Rome) Christian people all believed that there was one God. But many people thought God existed in three forms: God the Father, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Ghost who moves between them. In Perugino's painting you can see John the Baptist baptizing Jesus while God looks down from Heaven. The [...]

What is the Quran? – Islamic religion

By |2018-06-29T10:15:40+00:00July 26th, 2017|Islam, Religion|

What is the Quran? A page from a Quran of the Umayyad period (600s AD), now in Birmingham, England What is the Quran? The Quran is the holy book of the religion of Islam, as the Bible is for Christians and the Torah is for Jews. The Quran was written in Arabic, a little bit after the [...]

Medieval Islamic women

By |2017-07-26T23:13:36+00:00July 26th, 2017|Islam, People|

Mohammed with his daughter Fatima (she's in the front) Mohammed loved and admired the women in his life. He tried to give women more rights than they had before in Arabia, or under Roman and Sassanian law. The Quran tried to make rules that would help women. In general women had more rights under Islam than they had had before. [...]

Medieval Islamic families

By |2018-04-09T10:35:28+00:00July 26th, 2017|Islam, People|

The Birth of Mohammed (Iran, about 1315 AD, now in Edinburgh) According to the Quran, Muslim men could have as many as four wives if they were rich enough to take care of them all. But most men in the Islamic world still had only one wife. In fact, most people in the Islamic empire lived the way people had in [...]

Arabic language and literature

By |2018-04-08T01:10:49+00:00July 25th, 2017|Islam, Literature|

Sabataean writing Arabic is in the Semitic language group. Semitic languages seems to have gotten started before the beginning of writing, somewhere near modern Syria. They spread from there through Lebanon, Israel, and Jordan down to the Arabian peninsula. Because the Arabian peninsula was more isolated, people there kept speaking an older version of the language. [...]

Mohammed the Prophet – Early Islamic history

By |2018-04-23T15:29:55+00:00July 25th, 2017|History|

Mohammed praying at the Ka'aba(in an Ottoman book from 1388 AD) Mohammed was born in the Arab trading and pilgrimage city of Mecca, in the Arabian peninsula, between 570 and 580 AD. His parents were part of a family of traders. They were not among the ruling families of Mecca, but they were certainly not poor either. Mohammed himself however grew up poor, [...]

History of Islam

By |2018-04-09T23:10:26+00:00May 18th, 2017|History, Religion, West Asia|

The religious faith of Islam, as it was practiced between about 650 and 1500 AD, was closely related to Judaism and Christianity. Like Jews and Christians, Muslims believed that there was only one God, whom they called 'Allah'. Muslims believed that Moses and Jesus had both existed, and that they were important holy men, and that Mohammed [...]