By Mircea Eliade
Publish yr note: initially released in French below the name Histoire des croyances et des idées religieuses Vol3. De Mahomet à l'âge des Réformes Payot, Paris, 1978. First released in english in 1985
This quantity completes the immensely realized three-volume A heritage of spiritual Ideas. Eliade examines the move of Jewish concept out of old Eurasia, the Christian transformation of the Mediterranean quarter and Europe, and the increase and diffusion of Islam from nearly the 6th throughout the 17th centuries. Eliade's sizeable wisdom of previous and current scholarship presents a synthesis that's exceptional. as well as reviewing contemporary interpretations of the person traditions, he explores the interactions of the 3 religions and exhibits their carrying on with mutual effect to be refined yet unmistakable.
As in his prior paintings, Eliade can pay specific awareness to heresies, people ideals, and cults of mystery knowledge, resembling alchemy and sorcery, and maintains the dialogue, started in previous volumes, of pre-Christian shamanistic practices in northern Europe and the syncretistic culture of Tibetan Buddhism. those subcultures, he continues, are as very important because the better-known orthodoxies to a whole knowing of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
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Extra resources for A History of Religious Ideas, Volume 3: From Muhammad to the Age of Reforms
51 Particularly important are the dainas (short songs of four verses); the rituals related to agriculture, marriage, and death; and the popular stories. The geography of the Balts favored their conservatism (let us recall the numerous beliefs and archaic customs surviving in the Pyrenees, the Alps, the Carpathians, and the Balkans). Yet this in no way excludes the influences of their neighbors-Germans, Estonians, Slavs-and, in the last four centuries, of Christianity. Although there exist certain differences between the pantheons, religious conceptions, and practices of the three Baltic peoples, we will present them together in order to facilitate our exposition.
However, this time it is a matter ofJolkloric legends, whatever their origins may be. In other words, the study of this myth allows us to grasp certain conceptions of popular religiosity. For a long time after their conversion to Christianity, it was through the lens of this myth that the peoples of eastern Europe still justified the actual situation of the world and our human condition. The existence of the Devil has never been contested by Christianity. But the role of the Devil in the cosmogony was a "dualist" innovation, one which assured these legends their enormous success and prodigious circulation.
This sacrifice is celebrated from time to time by every family, and the ceremony lasts two or three consecutive evenings. In a meadow the kam (= shaman) installs a new yurt, inside of which he places a birch stripped of its branches and marked with nine notches. After a number of preliminary rites, he blesses the horse, and, with the aid of several assistants, he kills it by breaking the spinal column in a manner which allows no blood to flow. Then, having made offerings to the ancestors and to the protective spirits, the flesh is prepared and ritually eaten.
A History of Religious Ideas, Volume 3: From Muhammad to the Age of Reforms by Mircea Eliade