Re: Why did most major religions start in the Middle East

"Peter Ashby" <pashby@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote in message
Michael J Davis <?.?> wrote:

In message <1hwzd5f.19n45ub57t2o0N%pashby@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>, Peter
Ashby <pashby@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> writes
Michael J Davis <?.?> wrote:

In message <mnij23t3aq16g12socttgmsjpird2uk4un@xxxxxxx>, Alasdair
<mail@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx> writes
It has intrigued me for many years why God chose the Middle East to
found the main world religions, Judaism, Christianity, Islam plus
Zoroastrianism and doubtless many more.

What is so special about the Middle East?

The three main religions are intimately related, and are the only(?)
monotheistic religions.

A Hindu woman I worked with explained to me that Hinduism only looks
like a polytheistic religion. The way to understand the Hindu deities is
that they are each only aspects of god, which is why they have deities
like Shiva, the destroyer. Which seems very dark to us, yet did not your
god destroy Sodom and Gomorrah? Drown Pharao's army etc, etc? So Shiva
is simply a way of addressing that aspect.

Umm. But Hindus, in practice, seem to worship each deity independently.
It doesn't 'feel' like monotheism.

Maybe not to you, but it seems to for them, or are the reports of Hindus
not credible for some reason? And what about xian cathedrals with
separate chapels dedicated to particular saints who can be prayed to and
asked for intercession? that can look very much like polytheism.

Yes, I know Muslims may say the same about Christianity. But we don't
worship 'each' person of the Trinity separately.

No but they are often referred to individually in services in terms of
acting in the world. In addition the xian festivals throughout the year
celebrate different aspects of god, just like the Hindus do. There are
far more similarities at base than many are prepared to admit.


Hinduism is monotheistic, polytheistic, pantheistic, monist and atheist
depending on which school of it you look at. But generally it is not
monotheistic. Claiming that "Hinduism is monotheistic" is silly unless one
qualifies it by saying " a very small percentage of Hindus are monotheists".

Just as there are people called "christian" who are polytheists (Mormons),
but Christianity is monotheistic.