Mini Review – Our Oriental Heritage by Will Durant (Part 2) – The Near East

The second part of this tome (1200+ pages) is focused on the Ancient civilizations of the Near East; Egypt, Persia, Babylonia, Judea etc..

๐Ÿ“ โ€œIt is in the nature of an empire to disintegrate soon, for the energy that created it disappears from those who inherits it.โ€

๐Ÿ“ Persia was founded by a stoic people, but within a century it was destroyed by people binge-drinking and eating all day; โ€œspending their geniuses on sauces and desertsโ€ ๐Ÿฐ. What state is our current civilization in? ๐Ÿค”

๐Ÿ“ Egypt: โ€œMachinery was rare because muscle was cheap.โ€

๐Ÿ“ The hanging gardens of Babylon was considered considered one of the Wonders of the World. Legend has it that Nebuchadnezzar II had it build for his wife who was not used to the desert and longed for her lush homeland.

๐Ÿ“ There where thousands of Gods. With time minor deities merged and became mere aspects of major ones.

๐Ÿ“ In Judean prophets talked about the need to be moral rebirth. Jeremaya asked for circumcision of spirit as well as the flesh in his strange phrase: โ€œCircumstance yourself to the lord, take away the foreskins of your heart.โ€ ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

โญ๏ธ TAKEAWAY:

One theme that stood out to me is how civilizations raise from hard labour and sacrifice, just so that future generation can have it go down the toilet by forgetting these hardships and fall victim to hedonism. ๐Ÿ’ฉ ๐Ÿšฝ

โญ๏ธ TAKEAWAY 2:

The accounts of the religious believes in the different civilizations fascinates me to no end. How similar their stories are to ours and how much we still can find intact or reshaped in todayโ€™s religions.

โš–๏ธ VERDICT:

Now we get into the meat of the book and it has taken on another rhythm. I have mixed feelings about this second part of book. Itโ€™s is still brilliant but itโ€™s getting hard to retain the information. The problem might lie in the way the book is structured, using the same template to describe each civilization, one after the other, making it overwhelming.

Check out Part 1 for more in this review series.

What are you reading these days? ๐Ÿค”

Instagram Photo credit: @cinefile_25 , @eruchdah

Find other amazing reads in my reading lists!

One thought on “Mini Review – Our Oriental Heritage by Will Durant (Part 2) – The Near East

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s