RE: Fundamentalism and beliefs

From: Joe Dees (
Date: Wed Jan 23 2002 - 04:48:45 GMT

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    to read THE ROOTS OF MUSLIM RAGE by Brenard Lewis

    > "Lawrence DeBivort" <> <> Fundamentalism and beliefsDate: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 11:03:27 -0500
    >Theme: The expansion of Western ‘modern’ civilization created in the people
    >affected psychological conditions akin to exile.
    >>From Karen Armstrong, THE BATTLE FOR GOD, NY: Ballantine Books, 2001, paper,
    >p. 8.
    >Armstrong has just examined the repression of the Jews of Spain by Isabella
    >and Ferdinand, Catholic monarchs who defeated the last Muslim rules in
    >Spain. In 1492, the monarchs ordered the conversion by baptism or explusion
    >of all Jews from Spain. 70,000 Jews stayed and converted, though they
    >continued to be held in suspicion and subjected to the Inquisition. 80,000
    >fled next door to Catholic Portugal, and 50,000 travelled overseas and found
    >welcome in the Muslim Ottoman Empire -- LB
    >Armstong continues:
    >“[The Spanish Jews] were used to Muslim society, but the loss of Spain—or
    >Sefarad, as they called it—had inflicted a deep psychic wound. These
    >Sepharad Jews felt that they themselves and everything else were in the
    >wrong place. Exile is a spiritual as well as a physical dislocation. The
    >world of the exile is wholly unfamiliar and, therefore without meaning. A
    >violent uprooting, which takes away all normal props, breaks up our world,
    >snatches us forever from places that are saturated in memories crucial to
    >our identity, and plunges us permanently in an alien environment, can make
    >us feel that our very existence has been jeopardized. When exile is also
    >associated with human cruelty, it raises urgent questions about the problem
    >of evil in a world supposedly created by a just and benevolent God.
    >“ The experience of the Sephardic Jews was an extreme form of the uprooting
    >and displacement that other peoples would later experience when they were
    >caught up in an aggressive modernizing process. We shall see that when
    >modern Western civilization took root in a foreign environment, it
    >transformed the culture so drastically that many people felt alienated and
    >disoriented. The old world had been swept away, and the new one was so
    >strange that people could not recognize their once-familiar surroundings and
    >could make no sense of their lives. Many would become convinced, like the
    >Sephardics, that their very existence was threatened. They would fear
    >annihilation and extinction. In their confusion and pain, many would do what
    >some of the Spanish exiles did, and turn to religion. But because their
    >lives were so utterly changed, they would have to evolve new forms of faith
    >to make the old traditions speak to them in their radically altered forms.”
    >This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    >Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
    >For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)

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    This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
    For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Wed Jan 23 2002 - 05:22:36 GMT