Abraham : a journey to the heart of three faiths


Feiler, Bruce S, “Abraham : a journey to the heart of three faiths,” One Book. One Author. One Hour., accessed February 2, 2023, http://booknotes.gmu.edu/items/show/581.


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Abraham : a journey to the heart of three faiths


Feiler, Bruce S


Program air date: December 1, 2002


In this timely, provocative, and uplifting journey, the bestselling author of "Walking the Bible" searches for the man at the heart of the world's three monotheistic religions--and today's deadliest conflicts. "Abraham" uncovers fascinating, little-known details of the man who defines faith for half of the world. Endpaper maps.

Transcription of Annotations

Front endpapers include a list of names of people of different religious backgrounds who were consulted by the author for this book. Other notes define Abraham as a shadowy figure, the navel of the world, the sacred starting point, the "Rock", the founder of Islam, God's proxy on earth. Abraham is a part of the Hebrew Bible, the New Testament, and the Koran. A reference to "the call" is also included, which involves an internal journey, a willingness to risk everything, requires silence to be able to hear the call, and requires travel to another land, away from one's parents. -- Notes on back endpapers contain a paragraph on Jews and refer to Qumran where the Dead Sea scrolls were found in 1947; it is pointed out that Israel didn't exist in Abraham's time; he was the first Jew, is credited with inventing Passover, and is the Jewish notion of what Jesus represents to Christians. Notes under the heading 'Christians' explain that Paul realized that Christians needed Abraham; he was he first to write extensively about him. His 14 letters in the New Testament mention Abraham 19 times. Notes on Islam point out that17 of 25 prophets belong to the family of Abraham. Was Abraham a Muslim? It is stated that in the Koran there is no third person narrative, that God speaks directly, and that faith in God is the starting point for Islam. Muhammad had his followers initially face towards Jerusalem, later changed it to Mecca. The following questions and statements are part of the notes: "Did he exist?" - "Where was he born?" - Possibly southern Turkey. - "What proof is there?" - "We must accept his story on faith, not science." - "Who is Hanan Eschel?" - "What is the message of Genesis after 9/11?" - "Would you sacrifice your son today?" - The author calls this "one of the more troubling legacies of Abraham's life". -- Annotations by Brian Lamb in the margins and underlining of pertinent phrases throughout the book. -- Examples: "Abraham is the shared ancestor of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. ... He is history's first monotheist." -- p. 34: "At the root of Abraham's biography, there is harmony among all his descendants. The advantage of this universality cannot be underestimated. Abraham, across all religions and time, is devout, dedicated, capable of deductive reasoning, willing to struggle for his faith, and deft at using wit and logic to spread the divine message he alone understands. He is prophetic, heroic, charismatic. He is worthy of God." - p. 177: "These political battles gradually began to infect the religious dialogue, so that even a conversation about Abraham among Jews, Christians, and Muslims today often deteriorates into a disagreement about Jerusalem, Palestine, Osama bin Laden, Jewish settlements, suicide bombers, Iraqi schoolchildren, Iranian hostages, the Gulf War, Jewish control of the media, the Saudi royal family, the CIA, the Mossad."


"Abraham (Biblical patriarch)"


Brian Lamb Booknotes Collection
Gift of Brian Lamb, 2011.


W. Morrow
George Mason University. Libraries. Special Collections & Archives


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1st ed.