Battling the Gods: Atheism in the Ancient World
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, 10. nóv. 2015 - 304 síđur
How new is atheism? Although adherents and opponents alike today present it as an invention of the European Enlightenment, when the forces of science and secularism broadly challenged those of faith, disbelief in the gods, in fact, originated in a far more remote past. In Battling the Gods, Tim Whitmarsh journeys into the ancient Mediterranean, a world almost unimaginably different from our own, to recover the stories and voices of those who first refused the divinities.
From inside the book
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By the eleventh century BC they were trading with Cyprus; in fact, it was probably they who founded Larnaca, the modern capital. By the late tenth they were in Crete too. Within one hundred years their reach had extended to Sardinia and ...
... of Homer and Hesiod were composed in Ionic, which may be expected to have given a certain prestige to that particular dialect, but in fact epic language was so different from anything actually spoken that the effects were minimal.
But even so, all of these features were in fact available to ancient Greeks, particularly from the classical period onward. If you wanted a sense of mystical communion with the divine and the promise of eternal life, for example, ...
It is, certainly, central to modern practice (particularly in Protestant Christianity), but in fact the ancient Greek sources rarely speak of it, prioritizing instead the sense of collective involvement with the community.
In fact, it was the Greeks who named Egyptian writing systems ˇhieroglyphic˘ and ˇhieratic,˘ precisely to mark the difference from their own literature, which was not hieros (sacred) in this way. Some religious sects associated with ...
What people are saying - Write a review
LibraryThing ReviewUmsögn notanda - booktsunami - LibraryThing
What I found especially fascinating about this book was the fundamental point that he makes about peoples attitudes towards religion. The idea of a single unified faith community is a mirage ..both in ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUmsögn notanda - grandpahobo - LibraryThing
This is a very good history of ancient Greek society and the role of mythology. It also extends in the peak of the Roman empire. Unfortunately, there is little about the existence or role of atheism ... Read full review
Battling the Gods
The Material Cosmos
Cause and Effect
Concerning the Gods I Cannot Know
Playing the Gods
Plato and the Atheists
Gods and Kings
With Gods on Our Side
Atheism on Trial