The Writings of John Fiske Volume 21

The Writings of John Fiske Volume 21

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1902 edition. Excerpt: ...of our era. A similar thought appears in the mournful question asked by Tennyson's Arthur: --"O me! for why is all around us here As if some lesser god had made the world And had not force to shape it as he would?" But some Gnostics went so far as to hold that the world was originally created by the Devil, and is to be gradually purified and redeemed by the beneficent power of God as manifested through Jesus Christ. This notion is just the opposite to that of the Vendidad, which represents the world as coming into existence pure and perfect, only to be forthwith defiled by the trail of the serpent Ahriman. In both these opposing theories the divine power is distinctly and avowedly curtailed by the introduction of a rival power that is diabolical; upon this point Parsee and Gnostic are agreed. Distinct sources are postulated for the evil and the good. The one may be regarded as infinite in goodness, the other as infinite in badness, and the world in which we live is a product of the everlasting conflict between the two. This has been the fundamental idea in all Manichaean systems, and it is needless to say that it has always exerted a mighty influence upon Christian theology. The Christian conception of the Devil, as regards its deeper ethical aspect, has owed much to the Parsee conception of Ahriman. It can hardly be said, however, that there has been any coherent, closely reasoned, and generally accepted Christian theory of the subject. The notions just mentioned are in themselves too shadowy and vague, they bear too plainly the marks of their mythologic pedigree, to admit of being worked into such a coherent and closely reasoned theory. Christian thought has simply played fast and loose with these conceptions, speaking in one...
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Product details

  • Paperback | 92 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 5mm | 181g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236780973
  • 9781236780973