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The Law of God : The Philosophical History of an Idea (Hardcover)

Author: Brague, Remi

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The law of God: these words conjure an image of Moses breaking the tablets at Mount Sinai, but the history of the alliance between law and divinity is so much longer, and its scope so much broader, than a single Judeo-Christian scene can possibly suggest. In his stunningly ambitious new history, Ré mi Brague goes back three thousand years to trace this idea of divine law in the West from prehistoric religions to modern times— giving new depth to today’ s discussions about the role of God in worldly affairs.
Bringing to the work his characteristic brilliance and clarity of thought, Brague explains how divine law, which served in ancient Greece as a metaphor for natural law, was seen in ancient Israel as divine revelation. Later, in the Middle Ages, it took on new sacred meanings: within Judaism, it represented the sole presence of God among a people deprived of a temple and kingdom. For Islam, it served as direct dictation from God that came to rule all human practices. Christianity, meanwhile, conceived a relationship to God that went beyond legislation, turning away from the idea of revealed law and toward the Greek notion of law that was divine "because" it was natural.
Masterfully illuminating these ideas with a wide range of philosophical, political, and religious sources, Brague’ s history concludes by addressing the recent break in the alliance between law and divinity— when modern societies, far from connecting the two, started to think of law simply as the rule human community gives itself. Exploring what this disconnection means for the contemporary world, Brague— powerfully expanding on the project he began with "The Wisdom of theWorld"— re-engages readers in a millennia-long intellectual tradition, ultimately arriving at a better comprehension of our own modernity.


Publisher Univ of Chicago Pr
Mfg Part# 9780226070780
SKU 204174599
Format Hardcover
ISBN10 0226070786
Release Date 5/1/2007
Product Attributes
Book Format Hardcover
Number of Pages 0365
Publisher University of Chicago Press
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