Mohammedanism Lectures on Its Origin, Its Religious and by C. Snouck Hurgronje

By C. Snouck Hurgronje

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All matters of local detail shall be left to the co-operating institutions under whose auspices the lectures are to be delivered. —A course of lectures on some religion, or phase of religion, from an historical point of view, or on a subject germane to the study of religions, shall be delivered annually, or at such intervals as may be found practicable, in the different cities represented by this Committee. —The Committee (a) shall be charged with the selection of the lectures, (b) shall have charge of the funds, (c) shall assign the time for the lectures in each city, and perform such other functions as may be necessary.

Confusions between Miryam, the sister of Moses, and Mary, the mother of Jesus, between Saul and Gideon, mistakes about the relationship of Abraham to Isaac, Ishmael, and Jacob, might be put down to misconceptions of Mohammed himself, who could not all at once master the strange material. But his representation of Judaism and Christianity and a number of other forms of revelation, as almost identical in their contents, differing only in the place where, the time wherein, and the messenger of God by whom they came to man; this idea, which runs like a crimson thread through all the revelations of the first twelve years of Mohammed's prophecy, could not have existed if he had had an intimate acquaintance with Jewish or Christian men of letters.

Sprenger, with an exaggerated display of certainty based upon his former medical studies, gave Mohammed's disorder the name of hysteria. Others try to find a connection between Mohammed's extraordinary interest in the fair sex and his prophetic consciousness. But, after all, is it explaining the spiritual life of a man, who was certainly unique, if we put a label upon him, and thus class him with others, who at the most shared with him certain abnormalities? A normal man Mohammed certainly was not.

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