Jun 23, 2021
Genghis Khan and the Quest for God: How the World's Greatest Conqueror Gave Us Religious Freedom
Posted by Jack Weatherford

Thru history the world s great conquerors have made their mark not just on the battlefield, but also in the societies they ve transformed Genghis Khan conquered by arms bravery He ruled by commerce religion He transformed the silk road into the world s most effective trading network, established new laws drastically lowered merchant taxes But he knewThru history the world s great conquerors have made their mark not just on the battlefield, but also in the societies they ve transformed Genghis Khan conquered by arms bravery He ruled by commerce religion He transformed the silk road into the world s most effective trading network, established new laws drastically lowered merchant taxes But he knew that if his empire was going to last, he d need something stronger binding than trade He needed religion Unlike the Christian, Taoist Muslim conquerors who d come before, he gave his subjects freedom of religion using an argument that would directly influence Th Jefferson But before that, he looted their shrines, killed their priests Genghis lived in the 13th century, but he struggled with many of the same problems faced today How may one balance religious freedom with the need to restrain fanatics Can one compel rival religions driven by deep seated hatred to live together peacefully A celebrated anthropologist whose bestselling Genghis Khan the Making of the Modern World radically transformed our understanding of the Mongols their legacy, Weatherford has spent 18 years exploring areas of Mongolia closed until the USSR s fall researching The Secret History of the Mongols, an astonishing document written in code that was only recently discovered He pored thru archives found groundbreaking evidence of Genghis influence on the founding fathers Now, with this masterpiece of histori

  • Title: Genghis Khan and the Quest for God: How the World's Greatest Conqueror Gave Us Religious Freedom
  • Author: Jack Weatherford
  • ISBN: 9780735221154
  • Page: 199
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Genghis Khan and the Quest for God How the World s Greatest Conqueror Gave Us Religious Freedom Thru history the world s great conquerors have made their mark not just on the battlefield but also in the societies they ve transformed Genghis Khan conquered by arms bravery He ruled by commerce re

    Jeffrey Keeten

    As soon as one conflict subsided, people of faith easily invented another excuse to make war against nonbelievers, pagans, and heretics, or whatever they called people of other religions In the name of a peaceful and compassionate God, the religiously devout found it easy to torture, rob, beat, blind, rape, burn, drown, starve, dismember, or enslave anyone From infanticide to genocide, no punishment was too great or too evil when directed against someone perceived as a danger to the true religio [...]

    Will Byrnes

    In his discussion of Genghis Khan s career, Gibbon inserted a small but provocative footnote, linking Genghis Khan to European philosophical ideas of tolerance and, surprisingly, to the religious freedom of the emerging United States.The journey of a thousand miles begins with but a single steppe sorry In this case the author s twelve year sojourn began with a single footnote among about eight thousand in Edward Gibbon s six volume history of the Roman Empire Was it possible that the notion of r [...]


    My knowledge of Genghis Khan derives mostly from having watched, once and long ago, the Howard Hughes produced film The Conqueror, starring John Wayne Yes, that John Wayne The one from Iowa Playing the great Mongolian leader Wooing Susan Hayward Just like in the history books The tagline from the movie poster is I fight I love I conquer like a Barbarian Reviewer s Note Ditto It goes almost without saying that The Conqueror frequently pops up on lists of the worst movies ever made Accordingly, my [...]

    Jason Koivu

    Genghis Khan was a baaad manif you were a shitty ruler who oppressed your people and lived fat off the sweat of those less fortunate.Jack Weatherford knows his subject inside and out He s written numerous books on the Mongols and the khan in particular He did an excellent job in helping me garner a better understanding of perhaps the greatest ruler of all time Genghis Khan and the Quest for God How the World s Greatest Conqueror Gave Us Religious Freedom succeeds in portraying Genghis Khan as a [...]


    Back in the summer after I graduated high school, I spent a large chunk of time in Mongolia traveling along a north south axis from Ulanbaatar first to the Gobi and other southern regions and then up towards the wooded parks of the north Along that journey I briefly and unintentionally met Jack Weatherford and his party of Mongol scholars at one of the ger camps set up along the route He mentioned a book he was about to publish A year or two later, that book, Genghis Khan and the Making of the M [...]

    Luke Gracias

    3.5 starsThere would be few living who could claim to know about Genghis Khan than Jack Weatherford The sub title itself is intriguing How the World s Greatest Conquerer gave us religious freedom and therein lies the enigma Genghis Khan by his own volition believed he was on occasion an incarnation of God and on others, the Wrath of God He was not alone It was the fashion of the times for kings to portray their royalty as ordained by God The common man would thereby take on their taxes without [...]

    Ganzorig Bayasgalan

    The book is quite well researched by all means There are lots of quotations But the problem arises with the author himself Oh he writes vividly in a very imaginative way And that is the problem I have with this book It is riddled with speculations and assumptions It is as if Jack Weatherford was there when Chinggis Khaan was alive As if he was one of the first hand witnesses The book is full of subjectivity Not that I am complaining At least he portrays Chinggis Khaan in a very positive way So I [...]


    This was pretty skippable From what I can tell, Mongols recognized the importance of freedom of religion for comity when ruling one of the most expansive and cosmopolitan empires of all time, and weren t zealous enough about their own religious practices and beliefs which seem to have been mostly superficial to insist on conversion Toward the end the author tries to connect the thread from Khan to Voltaire to Locke to Jefferson to the rest of the world, but it s kind of ad hoc Instead, this book [...]

    John Martindale

    I listened to this audiobook directly after Weatherford s first book on Genghis Khan and the making of the modern world This book I d say is like an abridged version of the first He retails the whole story just without as many details which I actually found helpful, I was able to get the big picture and adds a little about religious themes than in the first book Genghis Khan pretty much made the state and his law the Absolute it was to be the like a universal religion, as long as they were subs [...]


    When I think of religious freedom, my mind certainly doesn t jump straight to Genghis Khan So when I saw this book, my curiosity took over and I knew that I had to read and find out Weatherford takes us on a journey through Genghis Khan s life, and through that we are able to see how he dealt with the various religious sects and different religions he encountered during his conquers Something I really appreciate about this book is that we learn about Genghis as a person as well as a leader, so [...]


    13th Century of humankind was a renaissance of global thinkers, not just in western cultures Just as St Francis of Assisi had such an influence on spirituality, so too Genghis Khan If you ve traveled the Silk Route, pondered the historical differences of Shiites Sunnis, questioned the Pakistani independent provinces, this is a historically accurate meditation on Genghis Khan s empire with the bonus of a fascinating introspective on the history of each person s right to religious freedom, then Ge [...]

    Peter A

    Over the Christmas New Year holiday we visited relatives in New York City When there, I do try to visit the Strand Bookstore, which has the tagline 18 Miles of Books It is a very impressive collection of books for sale, with great prices Right before leaving the store, I spotted the book, Genghis Khan and the Quest for God Why did I buy it For one, I had read two other books by this author related to Genghis Khan Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World around 2004 The Secret History of t [...]

    James (JD) Dittes

    I don t think there s a historian writing today who is better at finding the gaps in history and turning them inside out for readers enlightenment as Jack Weatherford Writing on subjects as diverse as Mongols and Native Americans, Weatherford never fails to instruct, never fails to illumine.Weatherford is on familiar ground with Quest for God is his fourth book on Genghis Khan and the Mongols, and having previously read Ghengis Khan and the Making of the Modern World, I wasn t sure if there was [...]


    good book


    From the cathedral of Kiev to the mosques of Baghdad, the Mongols treated religious buildings no differently from the opulent palaces or daily markets They put the great stores of religious wealth back into commercial circulation This wealth became the first global economic stimulus as they revitalized the Silk Route, opened an international network of hostels and banks for merchants to travel freely, suppressed bandits and pirates, built bridges, cleared harbors, lowered taxes, and tried to int [...]


    Most history books on Genghis Khan and the Mongols focus on the supposed bloodthirstyness of the horde This book takes a different tack it focuses on Genghis Khan s quest for knowledge As he conquered and nations, he wanted to be able to manage and rule them effectively For this he needed administrators who could read and write, and also people familiar with management He often turned to religious leaders among to help with these tasks He also like to interview religious leaders about their fa [...]


    This is certainly a worthy and impressive book, and the kind of history which one rarely encounters though Weatherford is actually an anthropologist by academic training The detail in this book is astonishing and sometimes overwhelming , and there are an enormous number of characters, which can be challenging for a reader But anyway, it s all there, and I will not summarize the text since other readers have already done that at length.The question is how does one react to Genghis Khan His shrewd [...]


    Wonderful book However, one theme I wish had been developed was his use of the concept of Nokor, which is mentioned only in the context of his recruiting the Keshig Nokor was actually a Mongol social procedure in which one swore allegiance as a follower for life This he exploited to suppress the divisive tendencies that had led to the septs fighting continuously among themselves Each sept was required to field a Tumen of theoretically ten thousand From each Tumen, roughly 20% were taken away as [...]

    Richard (Rick)

    This may not be the most gripping narrative, as it reads very much as a history book, but it is good, scholarly history The overall thesis is an interesting one is our modern concept of the freedom of religion from government something that the founding fathers learned from Genghis Khan The book then describes the history of Khan from his birth into poverty, where seemingly he was destined for nothingness, and his incredible rise in power as he created one of the greatest empires of all time It [...]

    Kirk Astroth

    Like a Russian novel, there are so many names and characters in this book it is hard to keep it all straight complicated by the author s back and forth through history The basic message is that despite all the havoc Genghis Kahn created in the world, his endearing quality was his tolerance for all religious beliefs This philosophy then made its way to Thomas Jefferson and was enshrined in our Constitution as the First Amendment Wow Talk about a legacy Let s ignore the thousands killed and burned [...]


    My review of this book is clouded by one thing if I remove it, it instantly increases my rating So my biggest nitpik is the book fails to prove or really dig into its thesis If you are reading this book to read about an in depth analysis of Genghis Khan and his religious tolerance approaches you ll come away with a thin bit of that However, if you come to this book about the rise of The Great Khan, his policies, and how his empire fared after his death, then this is a go to book I feel like the [...]


    I m not exactly sure how to review this book On one hand, it does a magnificent job of keeping the reader entertained through the journey it charts On the other hand, it doesn t exactly align up with the other histories of Genghis Khan in all the events it talks about The book glorifies his contribution to religious freedom and the first amendment His spiritual journey assumes centre stage at all times His rather bloody journey through Asia and Europe are neatly sidestepped.The writing is good, [...]


    This is a fine account of the administrative and military practices pioneered by the Mongolian empire, the largest the world has ever known Besides providing a highly readable account of Genghis rise and the empire s relatively fast disintegration after a little than a century, the book makes the additional claim that Genghis influenced our own concept of religious freedom Genghis was not the first world leader to insist on freedom of religion that would likely be Ashoka but his notion was impo [...]


    Interesting to read about yet another example of how Genghis Khan impacted the world Also interesting to think about the impact of freedom of religion in one of the most powerful empires in world history Hardly a coincidence Worthwhile

    James Heng

    As Good as the Author s Previous Work on Genghis KhanWhen I picked up the book, I was worried that the book was going to be repetitive of the author s earlier works on Genghis Khan It did not A wonderful depiction of The Great Khan s spiritual life.


    Good bio of Genghis with emphasis on how he gave us religious freedom Keeping with the theme of the book, the author may want to add a paragraph in the last chapter about the Mughal Empire s Akbar who upheld religious pluralism.

    Irene Rendon

    I forgot all the things I had learned about Genghis Khan The I read the I liked him.


    Don t miss Weatherford s insights on the Genghis Khan era


    NF History362 pagesReligious tolerance was said to be part of Genghis Khans goal But in trying to achieve that goal he continued the brutality of humanity.Has anything changed

    John Gardner

    2017 Reading Challenge Book 1 A Book About HistoryThis book s subtitle certainly grabbed my attention, and Weatherford did not disappoint as he argued compellingly for the claim that the freedom of religion currently enjoyed in most of the Western world owes a great deal to a 13th century Mongolian warlord Definitely a fascinating way to kick off my goal of at least 52 books this year as part of Tim Challies 2017 Reading Challenge I d originally chosen this as a biography, but since the scope of [...]

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