Abrahamic Religions - Judaism, Christianity, and Islam
Briefly, all religions manifest most of the following traits: they are founded by a culture hero who mediates between the world we know and the divine or supernatural
realm; they have a sacred text or oral legends that explain the origin of man and the world; they have a moral code; they have characteristic rituals; they all use art, music, literature, pageantry, and dance (or at least processionals and parades) to express their doctrines; they all claim to have evidence of the supernatural; and they presume to a knowledge of what happens after death, with some kind of belief in an afterlife.
Both Jesus and Mohammed are central to their respective religions. While Moses and Mohammed claimed that God had given them his revelations directly, Jesus's self-appointment to be the son of God was the basis of his authority. Since Mohammed claimed to have written the Quran based on a divine inspiration, the text of the Quran and Mohammed cannot be usefully separated. By the same token there is nothing so distinctive in the life of Christ compared to other religious culture heroes that justifies giving him any special recognition over and above Mohammed.
Three basic patterns of response by practitioners of these religions to the modern world have been conquest, fundamentalism, and secularization. The historical periods of national expansion for Judaism have had ancient and modern manifestations. Jehovah was conceived of as a strictly local God associated with just one of a whole variety of peoples (the Hebrews) inhabiting the region we now call the Middle East. Judaism's modern expansionism is occurring through the agency of the theocratic state of Israel.
The geographical aggressiveness of Christian Europe is well known, from the Crusades to the conquest of the New World and its attendant colonialism, to globalization, to the current in