The Ways of Islam: Integration and Disintegration

  • Jaroslav Krejčí


Islam, literally meaning submission, i.e. to the will of the One God, was not a new idea in the Levant. In all the civilizations discussed so far, personified gods were supreme beings, though with different emphases on the scope of their supremacy. In Pharaonic Egypt, God’s supremacy was blurred by the idea of cosmic order, and by man’s power to learn what had to be done and thus to force a way to salvation. In Judaism a certain qualification of God’s exclusive supremacy lay in the idea of the covenant, and in Zoroastrianism the devil (Ahriman) assumed a position unknown in other religions. Only in the Sumerian view, which was then inherited by other nations of the Cuneiscript civilization, was the supremacy of the gods so absolute that petitional prayer and sacrifices alone could mollify them. More often than not these gods were immanent in nature. The idea of God’s undisputed transcendence appeared in Zoroastrianism, matured in Judaism and from there was inherited by the Christians and Muslims.


Middle East Eleventh Century Turkic Immigrant Islamic Society Islamic Civilization 
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Notes and References

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Copyright information

© Jaroslav Krejčí 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jaroslav Krejčí
    • 1
  1. 1.Professor EmeritusUniversity of LancasterUK

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