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The Codification of Early Cultures and Religions

  • Evidence - Codifications (actually writing it down somewhere and making it the rule) and further developments of existing religious traditions provided a bond among the people and an ethical code to live by. It goes from religious belief to an ethical code to live by and a way of life.
  • Cannan is known as the levant. The israel region is known as the levant. Canaan is very central to early civilization development. Therefore, when Judaism develops there, it becomes the center of cultural exchange in the mesopotamia and egyptian regions
  • Judaism
    • God told Abraham that he had a chosen land for him. Abraham lived in Ur and he walked up the mesopotamian valley and then he made it to the promised land. It was relatively fertile and easily settled land. Abraham almost killed his son but he did not because it was just a test
    • The people went into Egypt when the hyksos. When the egyptians kicked out the hyksos, they decided to keep the hebrews as slaves and so that was not a good time for them.
    • God then send 10 plagues into egypt as punishment
    • The Moses got to lead the people out of egypt
    • Known as the first monotheistic religion
  • Evidence - The association of monotheism with Judaism was further developed with the codification of the Hebrew Scriptures. They have the ten commandments to lead it off and then they told you how to live your life and the scriptures laid all that out and then it was kind of like the code of Hammurabi.
    • The Israelites came with their own country
    • The first rulers were saul, david (son in law of saul), and then solomon
    • They were not really a conquering country but they did defend for a while but then they became a good target
    • We know that the Solomon temple was in the center of Jerusalem and that it was walled
  • Evidence - This codification reflected the influence of Mesopotamian cultural and legal traditions.
    • The legal aspect of Judaism and the close by proximity is what makes that happen
  • Evidence - The Assyrian, Babylonians, and the Roman empires conquered various Jewish states at different points in time. The population of Israel was brought into Babylonia for a short time to be as slaves and then the persians? brought them home to rebuild temples but then they were conquered by the romans.
  • Evidence - These conquests contributed to the growth of Jewish diasporic (people who are forced to relocate outside of their homeland) communities around the Mediterranean and Middle East. They may have escaped captivity because they are next to the Phoenicians who have a lot of seaport so the wealthy left.
    • Anywhere Phoenician communities could get them, Jewish communities began to appear.

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