Fighting Words: Religion, Violence, and the Interpretation of Sacred Texts
University of California Press, Dec 31, 2012 - Religion - 262 pages
One of the critical issues in interreligious relations today is the connection, both actual and perceived, between sacred sources and the justification of violent acts as divinely mandated. Fighting Words makes solid text-based scholarship accessible to the general public, beginning with the premise that a balanced approach to religious pluralism in our world must build on a measured, well-informed response to the increasingly publicized and sensationalized association of terrorism and large-scale violence with religion.
In his introduction, Renard provides background on the major scriptures of seven religious traditions—Jewish, Christian (including both the Old and New Testaments), Islamic, Baha’i, Zoroastrian, Hindu, and Sikh. Eight chapters then explore the interpretation of select facets of these scriptures, focusing on those texts so often claimed, both historically and more recently, as inspiration and justification for every kind of violence, from individual assassination to mass murder. With its nuanced consideration of a complex topic, this book is not merely about the religious sanctioning of violence but also about diverse ways of reading sacred textual sources.
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abū Bakr ahura Mazda allegory amalek amalekites angra Mainyu anti-Jewish apocalyptic arabic avesta Baha’i Baha’i faith Baha’u’llah Banū Bar kokhba battle Bhagavad Gita biblical Book century c.e. Christians commentary conflict context divine early enemies evil exegesis exegetical fight Finhās followers Gandhi Gāthā Gita God’s hand Gospel Granth Guru Gobind singh Guru nanak Hebrew Bible herem Hindu holy human ibid ibn ishāq ibn kathīr indian interpretation islam israel Jerusalem Jesus Jewish Jews Judaism khalsa king literature Matthew meaning medieval Medina messianic Middle Persian militant Mughal Muhammad Muslims narrative nonviolent ofGod ofisrael ofthe ofviolence old testament one’s oxford pact passages political prophets Qaynuqā Qur’an rabbis reference religion religious revelation sacred texts samuel 15 saul scholars scriptures shi‘i sikh Sīra spiritual sword tafsīr teachings theological tion torah tradition trans translation tribe University Press verses violence warrior words wrongsaying yahūd yahweh Yasna Zafarnama Zarathushtra Zionism Zoroastrian