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In "The Gifts of the Jews", Thomas Cahill reveals the critical change that made Western civilisation possible. Within the matrix of ancient religions ...Show synopsisIn "The Gifts of the Jews", Thomas Cahill reveals the critical change that made Western civilisation possible. Within the matrix of ancient religions and philosophies, life was seen as an endless cycle of birth and death; time was like a wheel, spinning irrevocably until ancient Jews began to see time differently, as a narrative whose triumphant conclusion would come in the future. From this insight came a new concept of men and women as individuals with unique destinies, and our hopeful belief in progress and the sense that tomorrow can be better than today. Full of compelling stories, insights, and humour, this book is an irresistible exploration of the origins of some of our oldest and most closely held beliefs.Hide synopsis
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I recommend reading this before reading the old testament. Cahill's work is an indispensable compact history of the Hebrew people, and brings out their unique contribution to the philosophy of individualism.. The timeline at the back makes everything fall into place.
The useful picture of pre-Biblical society does not excuse the Author's inaccurate suppositions regarding the personalities, character and motivations of Biblical characters which conflict with boat-loads of primary sources. Overall, it's a silly book.
Unlike his book "How the Irish saved Civilization" (which I found fascinating), Thomas Cahill's book "The Gift of the Jews" lacks scope and scholarly deapth. The author makes to many assumptions (often from his skewed opinions) about the Jews, the Bible and G-d. I was sadly disappointed with Thomas ...
Cahill's "Hinges of Civilization" series addresses the intriguing issue of what special "gifts" particular people, places and times have given to the advancement of civilization. The first volume, "How the Irish Saved Civilization," tells the little-known story of how Irish Christians saved ancient ...
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