Traditional African Religious Beliefs

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The Influence of the Mongols on Eurasian Trade

The Mongols had an influential impact on the Eurasian trade and the integration of cultures in Europe and Asia.

During the dynasty of Genghis Khan, the bubonic plague spread from central Asia to Europe due to the movement and traveling of traders leading to loss of high population numbers while increasing opportunities for the survivors to benefit from trade. A wide variety of goods ranging from agricultural products, medicine, weapons, and many other consumer goods were made available by the presence of Mongol traders in Europe. Diplomatic trade routes and channels were opened in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.

Trade Conducted in China by Muslim Traders

Trade was conducted in China through land and sea by Muslim traders who came from Arab peninsula and Central Asia. Musicians from Persia were allowed to enter China to entertain the metropolitan cities of China.

The Silk Road and Cross-Cultural Integration

The Silk Road trade route, social integration, and imperial expansion led to the interaction of the Mongols and the people from Europe causing an increase in cross-cultural integration. Early technology such as gunpowder manufacture, textile, domestication of animals, and printing was spread through the Silk Road trade route as the center of the Eurasian trade. Soldiers, missionaries, refugees, merchants, and migrants used this trade route to facilitate their interests.

Religious and Diplomatic Treaties

Religious and diplomatic treaties and contracts were agreed upon to enable the existence and continuity of trade among the Europeans and the Mongols. The western European leaders collaborated with the Mongol rulers of China to defeat the Muslims in the Southwest parts of Asia. This collaboration increased the spark of cultural interactions between the two groups. During the Eurasian trade, the Pax Mongolia encouraged the sharing of their knowledge and cultural identity. The people were allowed to have Christian, Muslim, Buddhism or Taoism religious believes as long as their faith did not interfere with the political aspirations of the Mongol Khan. Traders, missionaries, and monks were allowed to use the designated trade routes leading to more cultural interaction and increase in trade between Asia and Europe.

Question# 2

Religious Diversity and Tensions in Sub-Saharan Africa

In sub-Saharan Africa, the majority of Africans have a deep commitment to their faith which includes Islam and Christianity. Although these Africans have Islam or Christian religious beliefs, they continue to practice some of the traditional African religious elements. The sub-Saharan Africans support the concept of democracy because it allows them to exercise their individual religious beliefs freely. In enacting the laws of the land, Christians prefer using the Bible and its principles while Muslims favor the Koran and the Sharia law. However, a middle ground is arrived at by appreciating positive attributes and elements of Islam and Christianity. There is, however, a tension that lies beneath the surface.

Unlike other countries around the globe such as the United States and European countries where many people are unaffiliated to religious faiths, sub-Saharan Africa has its people affiliated to either Islam or Christianity. Traditional African religious beliefs have been integrated into the acquired religions to coexist along with Islam and Christianity. The majority of Muslims and Christians in sub-Saharan Africa believe in witchcraft, ancestors, evil spirits, reincarnation, traditional leaders, and sacrifices despite their religion.

The appearance of Islam and Christianity in the African region of Sub-Sahara has tolerance and compromise. However, if a close look is considered Muslims have a more positive perspective of Christians compared to the Christian view of Muslims.

November 13, 2023




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