A term to describe an organized belief system which revolves around supernatural elements and entities.

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67 views

At what point in time did Judaism become popular? [Pre Christianity]

When did Judaism become popular in the ancient world, and what caused it to spread faster at that point in time? (ex: Christianity had its spread assisted by Emperor Constantine in the Roman Empire)
-3
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2answers
114 views

The crusades against the Moors [closed]

It seems to me that recent history portrays the Christian crusaders as evil and brutal for taking back Spain from the Islamic Moors who conquered them and toppled the Spanish government and ruled over ...
3
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1answer
83 views

Differences between the Dead Sea Scrolls and the books of Moses [closed]

On Wikipedia, I read that the texts from Exodus in the Dead Sea scrolls contain some differences from the canonical version. However, I couldn't find them online. Can someone give me a few examples?
2
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1answer
44 views

Is there any record of the Ebionites outside of the antiheretical polemics of the church fathers?

The Ebionites were a sect of Jewish Christians in the early centuries of Christianity. Little is known about them, and it appears that most or all of their texts were destroyed or lost, possibly as a ...
5
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2answers
109 views

Are there any written records of Norse mythology dated prior to Christianization?

As I understand it, most of what we know about Norse mythology is based on texts written in sagas by Christians in the late Middle Ages. Do we have any contemporary accounts of Norse mythology from ...
3
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0answers
32 views

What exactly were the religious beliefs of Gemistus Plethon?

According to wikipedia: [Gemistus Plethon] was a Greek scholar of Neoplatonic philosophy. He was one of the chief pioneers of the revival of Greek learning in Western Europe. In the dying years of ...
5
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1answer
69 views

Diaries or writings of Cathar Perfecti in 12th Century France

The Cathars were a Gnostic sect of southern (Languedoc) France in the 12th Century. "Perfecti" were individuals in the sect who followed the most extremely austere lives, renouncing worldly pleasures ...
3
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2answers
108 views

What's the relationship between Solomon's Temple and Christians? [closed]

An Evangelical-Pentecostal church has built a huge replica of Solomon's Temple in Brazil. But why Solomon's Temple? What does it have to do with Jesus Christ and the Christian faith? It's very odd to ...
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2answers
185 views

How did religions interpret rainbows before science explained it? [closed]

A rainbow this morning to work made me think of how religions used to interpret these colorful appearances. Signs from the gods? Repent for your sins? A gift? I want to know how different ...
4
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4answers
215 views

Why was the spread of Christianity scattered compared to other major religions?

This video of the spread of world religions makes Christianity look like an anomaly. Every other religion spreads out smoothly from a central point, growing at the edges. Christianity begins as a ...
2
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5answers
260 views

Are there any good examples in earth history of two religions co-existing?

Specifically I am looking at a situation where: Religion A is: Monotheistic Hierarchical (single leader atop the organization) At least slightly expansionist though not necessarily by force of arms ...
7
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2answers
163 views

Did contemporary scholars draw a connection between Great Schism and Crab Nebula Supernova (1054 A.D.)?

Did any contemporary scholars draw a connection between the occurrence of the Great Schism and the Crab Nebula Supernova, which both occurred around the middle of 1054 A.D.? I already asked at ...
2
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0answers
47 views

Orthodox traveller in Catholic lands [closed]

What would the options have been for a member of the Orthodox church have been for religious observations while travelling in Catholic countries during the middle-ages? Presumably someone travelling ...
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2answers
79 views

What are the major religious 'families' which formed independently of other families?

This question may need some work, but I'll do my best.. I remember hearing a while back that much of the history of India occurred in isolation. Without knowing whether this is strictly true, it got ...
6
votes
2answers
902 views

What happened to the Polish Calvinists?

According to the Wikipedia article on Calvinism: Although much of Calvin's work was in Geneva, his publications spread his ideas of a "correctly" reformed church to many parts of Europe. [...] It ...
3
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0answers
60 views

What is the status of Weber's protestant ethic thesis? [closed]

Max Weber in his famous book The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism elaborates a thesis that relates the development of the capitalistic system is a result of the work ethic that emerged ...
15
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3answers
843 views

Why did the French nobility adopt Calvinism?

The Wikipedia article on the French Wars of Religion says that the Calvinist form of Protestantism, in particular, spread into the nobility. Now, I'd like to know why is that, and not Lutheranism for ...
3
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6answers
1k views

When and why did single deity religions become more popular than multi deity religions? [closed]

In the world at the moment, the most popular religions seem to mostly be religions that worship only one "God", such as Christianity and Islam. However, in the past there were many religions that ...
4
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1answer
168 views

What were Aurangzeb Alamgir's motives for reversing much of the religious tolerance in the Mughal Empire?

Aurangzeb Alamgir's great-grandfather Akbar the Great (1556-1606) was famous for being religious tolerant, for abolishing the jizya tax, and attempting to end the ritual of Sati (where a wife must ...
2
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1answer
85 views

The act of Settlement 1701 and succession

If the Act of Settlement 1701 did not pass, who then would have been next of kin after the death of Anne of Great Britain?
10
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3answers
1k views

Did the Delphic oracle speak gibberish?

Wikipedia's article on the Delphic oracle says: The usual theory has been that the Pythia delivered oracles in a frenzied state induced by vapors rising from a chasm in the rock, and that she ...
16
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7answers
4k views

What is the earliest reference to “space aliens”?

If we go back sufficiently far in human history we will most likely see that any descriptions of (supposed) "aliens" are described solely in religious terms. So in the distant past, any weird or ...
3
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1answer
101 views

When did the Ecclesiastical courts in England lose the authority to mete out punishments such as imprisonment and execution?

In 1401, the ecclesiastical courts in England were given the power to burn heretics. In modern times the ecclesiastical courts have no control over anyone who does not belong to the Church of England, ...
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5answers
479 views

Why was East Asia more religiously tolerant than Europe in medieval time?

In medieval time, different religions coexisted in China, Japan and Korea, but only Christianity was allowed in Europe. What factors made medieval East Asia more religiously tolerant than medieval ...
2
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0answers
117 views

Christian hangmen in Islamic countries?

In an interview a senior researcher at Amnesty International explained that as far as I know certainly in Punjab and Sind provinces, the two largest provinces by population, the hangmen ...
2
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0answers
56 views

What was the justification of morality in Puritan antinomianism? [closed]

As far as I know, Puritans were devout Calvinists. According to Theopedia, it is associated with disobedience to the established authority, so it may be connected with the idea of lawlessness, ...
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3answers
1k views

What happened to those ethnic Greeks who converted to Islam during the Ottoman empire?

I got a little inspiration from a previous post on the History part: "Why were Albanians the only nation in the Balkans who converted to Islam during the Ottoman occupation?" Does anyone know ...
4
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1answer
149 views

What was the role of the Russian Orthodox church in Soviet Russia?

Considering that Soviet Union was officially atheistic and Bibles and most "Christian" denominations were banned, it is interesting to me that the government left the Russian Orthodox churches ...
38
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5answers
7k views

When did worshiping of ancient Greek gods come to an end?

The ancient Greeks had their pantheon of gods whose signficance vanished with the civilization. Some individual gods entered the belief systems of later cultures, but such mutations are not what I am ...
7
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1answer
175 views

When were the first mosques established in Constantinople?

In his book The Man of Numbers about Leonardo Pisano (Fibonacci), Keith Devlin quotes a problem from the Liber Abbaci (Devlin's spelling, I know most others spell it Liber Abici) which is titled "A ...
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2answers
587 views

Was Buddhism the dominant religion of India for 1 thousand years?

I read in the book 'The Argumentative Indian' by Amartya Sen, that Buddhism was the dominant religion of India for about a 1000 years, and that foreigners referred to India as a Buddhist kingdom. ...
2
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1answer
181 views

Which cultures considered dual-gender sacred

Which cultures have historically considered the manifestation of two or more genders by one individual to be either a divine trait (being a deity) or to be an indication of divine favor or association ...
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3answers
383 views

Did Franco consider Hitler a “son of the Catholic Church” who “died while defending Christianity”?

Did Francisco Franco, who established Catholicism as the State religion of Spain, consider Hitler a "son of the Catholic Church" who "died while defending Christianity"? If so, why? Hitler acted ...
3
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1answer
240 views

Has any culture primarily worshipped an evil deity? [closed]

I was recently re-watching the Star Trek: The Next Generation episode Masks, (because I'm not a nerd even a little bit), and an interesting thought struck me: the culture portrayed in that episode ...
2
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1answer
79 views

Is there a Buddhist-Franciscan connection?

A sentence in a book review seems to presuppose that: Cardini also says nothing about the Muslim world as a conduit for cultural goods from even greater distances, such as Chinese-style ...
13
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3answers
461 views

What is the last historical mention of people worshipping the Roman gods?

Today, there are many polytheists and neopagans who worship the ancient Roman gods. They are, however, a very new development, and not the descendants of an unbroken line stretching back to the Roman ...
13
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3answers
408 views

Was the concept of religious freedom in the early United States applied to native American faiths?

When the nascent United States was drafting and adopting its supreme laws, some references to religions were made. For example, in the Bill of Rights: Congress shall make no law respecting an ...
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0answers
128 views

Was any Medieval state ever “partially” Roman Catholic? [closed]

It is my understanding that in most of (if not all) the states in western medieval Europe the Roman Catholic church was the only recognized religious body. I'm looking for an example of a state with ...
9
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2answers
624 views

Is there evidence Muslim soldiers fought in the Continental Army?

It is said that Muslims fought for the American Revolution, by serving in the Continental Army. Wikipedia cites a few names: Records from the American Revolutionary War indicate that at least a ...
4
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1answer
117 views

Why did the Dutch West India Company allow Quakers in the New Netherlands?

In 1657 a group of English Quakers arrived in New Amsterdam (the Dutch colonial town that became modern New York City). They were persecuted by the colonial government there for their religion. Then ...
6
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1answer
162 views

Were the Puritans for a State Church?

In a book titled America's Providential History it states on page 84 that The major Puritan weakness was their holding to the idea of a State Church. They saw nothing wrong with a National ...
3
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1answer
78 views

Power over the centuries: spiritual vs. political vs. economic

I recently attended a presentation on the shift in power over the centuries. The speaker argued that ... the power in the middle ages was in the churches, i.e., the priests and, thus, in the ...
6
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2answers
447 views

Why did Christianity disappear in North-Western Africa?

During Roman times North-Western Africa had a thriving Christian community, giving birth to Saint Augustine and a long lasting heresy. This is similar to many Christian communities of the time, from ...
2
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1answer
234 views

Devastating air strike over Middle Eastern country during religious holiday

I'm trying to remember a historical incident I read about but have a foggy recollection of. As far as I recall, during a religious holiday, a neighboring country launched an air strike against ...
3
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0answers
101 views

Contemporary objections to the Bill of Rights's 1st Amendment / Declaration of the Rights of Man, art. 10? [closed]

What were the objections to the Bill of Rights's 1st Amendment when it was first published? Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise ...
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2answers
298 views

What do we know ***historically*** about Jesus? [closed]

How do historians study the events of Jesus' life, and the person he was? I read a book on the topic, and it held the position that the gospels were revised to appease the Romans - especially the ...
22
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9answers
12k views

Which religion was the first monotheistic one?

Which religion was the first monotheistic one? Was it judaism or a religion which disappeared from practice?
2
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2answers
182 views

In a broad sense, what are the reasons for the history-spanning persecution of Jews? [closed]

Throughout history, Jews have almost always been persecuted in every culture they try to co-exist with. The act is so common that we even have a term for it - anti-semitism - even though semites ...
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2answers
3k views

Why did people die for their religion in the 400s CE (or even now)?

Before the institution of Christianity and the evolution of Buddhism into Mahayana Buddhism, people never felt quite so strongly about religion. Suddenly, people feel ready to die for it and die ...
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2answers
144 views

After the fall of Constantinople was there a re-evaluation of the basis of Russia's religion?

According to the Primary Chronicle, Vladimir the Great rejected Judaism in 987 with the rationale that they lost Jerusalem. When Constantinople was conquered in 1453 by the Ottomans, was there any ...