‘People of God’ Part I

Nicholas Doumanis

in Before the Nation

Published in print November 2012 | ISBN: 9780199547043
Published online January 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780191746215 | DOI:
‘People of God’ Part I

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Despite the fact that Muslims and Christians were determined to remain distinct, the most intimate connections that were developed between these communities in Anatolia were through religion. The boundaries between popular or local religion were porous, and this chapter sets out to explain why it is that the Greek Orthodox Christians could allow for ‘religious’ connections with local Muslims. One explanation is that the Orthodox laity have always had a license for create religious traditions, especially cults focused on icons and saints. Another has to do with popular religion being practical, as medical cures were most often sought through the procurement of miracles, and miracles were often available through Muslim sacra. Local religion is also seen here as reflecting a long running tension between the laity and clergy over the sacred. The former accounts for latter's inability to provide clearer answers about the supernatural, the afterlife, and the devil.

Keywords: Eastern Orthodoxy; popular religion; saint cults; miracles; supernatural; exotica; evil

Chapter.  8897 words. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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