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RE: [ANE-2] The First Historians?

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  • Graham Hagens
    This is late. Sorry. ... Certainly the original Axial Age concept has serious shortcomings.  These are now widely recognised, in spite of
    Message 1 of 132 , Jul 5, 2009
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      This is late. Sorry.

      --- On Mon, 6/15/09, Trudy Kawami <tkawami@...> wrote:

      >The idea of an "Axial Age" in world history has not aged very well as
      >some parts of it, i.e. the synchronicity of Zardusht (Zoroaster) and the
      >historical Buddha Shakyamuni are no longer widely accepted. On the other
      >hand, there is renewed interest in the question of literacy and when it
      >arrived in South Asia (India in its wider aspect) and Central Asia. In
      >this the Achaemenid Empire certain may have played a major role with its
      >complex bureaucracy. This takes us unfortunately past the general limits
      >of this list and into questions of the dating of South & Central Asian
      >texts, most of which are known ONLY from much later versions. (If you
      >think the problems of the HB are substantial, dealing with the Vedic
      >material is far worse!)

      Certainly the original Axial Age concept has serious shortcomings.  These are now widely recognised, in spite of ongoing popularisation by authors such as Karen Armstrong.  Integrating the vast complex of philosophical and religious developments in India, East Asia, the ANE and Greece over a 700 year period is not only beyond the scope of this list, but also well exceeds the capacity of serious analytical scholarship.
       
      What is of interest here however is the growing evidence that extensive syncretism of  Aegean, Near Eastern and South Asian ideas did occur during the Achaemenid period.  This has nothing to do with the dating of texts: it has to do with the sudden appearance of exotic and arcane concepts in disparate teachings which can be dated to that period.  Although Jaspers and neo-Jasperians overestimate/d the geographical and temporal extent of this phenomenon, there is very good reason to believe that within the framework of relevance to this list  - i.e. within at territory encompassing Gandhara, Mesopotamia, Syro-Palestine and Ionia/Thrace, between the late 6th and 4th centuries.there was an extensive exchange of  Upanishadic, Hebrew, Ionian and Zoroastrian (not Zoroaster himself of course - he had been long gone for a millennium by then) concepts,  The fusion of ideas which followed was of great importance to the later history of
      'Western,' Near Eastern and South Asian philosophies and religions. .

      Graham Hagens
















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    • frankclancy
      A case of Heineken - who cares? But a case of Guiness and I would purchase a new spade!! Gad!! Frank Clancy
      Message 132 of 132 , Jul 24, 2009
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        A case of Heineken - who cares? But a case of Guiness and I would purchase a new spade!! Gad!! Frank Clancy

        --- In ANE-2@yahoogroups.com, George F Somsel <gfsomsel@...> wrote:
        >
        > In some cases that is indeed unfalsifiable; but, if you are digging where a case of Heineken ought to be according to the text, and you don't find the case of Heineken anywhere close, I suppose that's falsification (or you assume someone got thirsty).
        > george
        > gfsomsel
        >
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