During the rise of Islam, Muslim fascination with Christian monastic life was articulated through a fluid, piety-centred movement. Bradley Bowman explores this confessional synthesis between like-minded religious groups in the medieval Near East. He argues that this potential ecumenism would have been based upon the sharing of core tenets concerning piety and righteous behaviour. Such fundamental attributes, long associated with monasticism in the East, likely served as a mutually inclusive common ground for Muslim and Christian communities of the period. This manifested itself in Muslim appreciation, interest and—at times—participation in Christian monastic life.
Bradley Bowman is assistant professor of history at the University of Louisville. He has published an article in the Harvard Theological Review and has two further articles under review with the Journal of Medieval Encounters and Christian-Muslim Relations.
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