Eastern Rome and the Rise of Islam: History and Prophecy by Olof Heilo

By Olof Heilo

The emergence of Islam within the 7th century advert nonetheless polarises students who search to split non secular fact from the historic fact with which it's linked. even if, background and prophecy aren't exclusively outlined by means of optimistic facts or apocalyptic fact, yet by means of human matters, who contemplate them to express designated messages and in flip make those messages significant to others. those messages are at the same time interdependent, and analysed jointly offer new insights into history.

It is when it comes to this idea that Olof Heilo offers the decline of the japanese Roman Empire as a key to knowing the increase of Islam; historic strategies frequently perceived as particular from each other. jap Rome and the increase of Islam highlights major convergences among Early Islam and the overdue historical global. It means that Islam’s upward push is a function of a typical technique within which tensions among imperial targets and apocalyptic ideals in Europe and the center East reduce directly throughout today’s theological and political definitions. The conquests of Islam, the emergence of the caliphate, and the transformation of the Roman and Christian global are approached from either prophetic anticipations within the historical and overdue historical global, and from the Medieval and sleek receptions of historical past. within the shadow in their narratives it turns into attainable to track the description of a shared background of Christianity and Islam. The "Dark a while" hence emerge now not purely as a story of sound and fury, yet as an period of openness, variety and unforeseen possibilities.

Approaching the increase of Islam as a old phenomenon, this booklet opens new views within the examine of early faith and philosophy, in addition to delivering a beneficial source for college students and students of Islamic experiences.

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Sample text

Hardly surprising, the Persian invasion caused uncertainty and unrest. 18 An immediate result of the Persian victory, thus, may have been a surge in apocalyptic expectations that hampered any further political stabilisation. As such, the capture of Jerusalem in 614 could have created an Eastern equivalent to the capture of Rome by the Visigoths in 410, which had shocked the Latin and Western parts of the empire and provided the main background for the utopian visions of St Augustine, The City of God.

84 A similar mood of cautious expectation must have pervaded those he had gone out to meet. Less than a decade earlier Heraclius had entered Jerusalem with much ado, with holy relics, imperial garments and ceremonial paraphernalia. The man who now approached the city from the south was an Arab, a man from the desert. He had no air of splendour and he was riding on a donkey. He entered the city with a group of followers and headed towards the old Jewish temple mountain to pray there. 85 Apart from that, nothing in the appearance of the Arab leader would have been directly frightening.

602–610) in Constantinople. The inscription on its fundament indicates that the pillar once featured a gilded statue of the emperor on top, but does not specify the reason why it was erected. It might have been related to the fact that the emperor had favoured the supremacy of the pope in Rome over the other patriarchs, or that he had allowed the reuse of the ancient Pantheon as a Christian church. 5 Positioned in front of the ancient rostrum and conspicuous still to modernday visitors to Rome, the column of Phocas is outstanding in more than one sense, for the legacy of its emperor is quite a bad one.

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