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Ancient near Eastern Religions

One of the deepest roots of global culture lies in the ancient Near East, which has had as profound an influence on Western civilization as the later cultures of Greece and Rome. Momentous themes emerged from Near Eastern literature, such as lost innocence, undying love, leaders as good shepherds, sanctified justice, and sanctified war. Such themes continue to resonate in the Western imagination.

Part of the geographical region of West Asia, the ancient Near East extends from Mesopotamia (modern Iraq) in the east to the Mediterranean coasts of Anatolia (Turkey) and the Levant (Syria, Lebanon, Israel, and Gaza) in the west. Some historians include ancient Egypt, Iran, and Afghanistan. It is from this vast region that we get core notions and stories that, some 3,000 years ...

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