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Religions of the Silk Road: Overland Trade…

Religions of the Silk Road: Overland Trade and Cultural Exchange from…

by Richard Foltz

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A bit too scattered to get a decent overview of any one place or time. But doing justice to such a broad topic would have taken 500 pages. Not a good primer, but piqued my interest to read on into more specialized studies.
  JDHomrighausen | Mar 19, 2015 |
This is a brief history and historical interpretation of religions along the Silk Road. The author's contention seems reasonable, that trade had a great deal to do with the religions that took hold and ultimately survived in the central Asian Silk Road areas. The constant suspicion, fighting, and murder between the different groups brings to mind the theme of Christopher Hitchen's book, God is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything. It also explains some of the news coming out of places like Iraq, Iran, and Afghanistan. ( )
  baobab | Mar 19, 2011 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312233388, Paperback)

Ever since the label was coined in the late 19th century, the idea of the Silk Road has captivated the Western imagination with images of fabled cities and exotic peoples. Religions of the Silk Road looks behind the romantic notions of the colonial era and tells the story of how cultural traditions, especially in the form of religious ideas, accompanied merchants and their goods along the overland Asian trade routes in pre-modern times. As early as three thousand years ago Hebraic and Iranian religious ideas and practices traveled eastwards in this way, to be followed centuries later by the great missionary traditions of Buddhism, Christianity, Manichaeism, and Islam. But the Silk Road was more than just a conduit along which these religions hitched rides East; it was a formative and transformative rite of passage, and no religion emerged unchanged at the end of the journey.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:47 -0400)

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"Traces the spread of religions and cultures along the trans-Eurasian trade routes over a period of more than two millennia. Indian, Iranian, Semitic, and Mediterranean ideas all followed the same trajectory through Central Asia to China and beyond, picking up additional elements and sometimes being radically transformed along the way. This age-old pattern shows how the transmission of culture and the development of economic networks have always been inextricably linked, laying a precedent for the globalizing trends seen today"--Back cover.… (more)

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