The Similarities Between Christianity And Islam

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Christianity and Islam are the two largest religions in the world, with 2.1 Billion and 1.3 Billion followers respectively. Each had their own rise, golden age, and eventual large-scale split. However, each religion spread in different regions of the world in different ways and developed their own traditions and structures. Christianity and Islam have similarities such as a large-scale split and a history of spreading through popular trade routes, while simultaneously having many differences such as where the two religions spread, the methods in which they spread, and the structure of their religious leaderships. One of the primary differences between the spread of Islam and Christianity is the directions in which they spread. Islam originated…show more content…
In Christianity, the Bishop of Rome, or the Pope, is the leader of the religion. The Pope has had significant influence on the world stage throughout history. The Pope in the early stages of Christianity helped its rapid spread. Through the middle ages, the Pope was just as large of a political leader in Europe as he was a religious leader within Christianity. His influence of the spread of the Christian faith as well as the developments of modern European culture and history makes the Pope and his Papacy one of the most influential and enduring institutions in the history of the world. Though the Pope’s political influence has been greatly reduced through the recent centuries, his work as the global representative of over a billion followers continues to this day. Islam, however, has no official leader. The largest leaders within Islam are known as Imam’s, who are the religious leaders of a specific Muslim community. Islam has no leader on the scale of the Pope within Christianity. Since there was no leader to aid in the spread of the Islamic faith, Islam depended solely on the natural spread of its faith through trade routes and word of mouth. This contrast has created significant differences in the way the two religions developed over the course of history. Christianity in the modern age and even throughout most of history has been a significantly more…show more content…
The two religions relied heavily on trade routes to grow and expand. Christianity spread almost accidentally by word of mouth through the silk road, the largest trade route in Eurasia at the time. Traders and other travelers spread the word of Christianity through the silk road and all of Europe, subsequently. Meanwhile Islam spread through the Indian Ocean trade route, a trade route created thanks to the development of larger ships, which allowed for much faster trade and spread of ideas, such as Islam, on the sea’s rather than across land. If these trade routes had never been allowed to develop or flourish, it can only be assumed that both Islam and Christianity would have remained very isolated and that their spread would have remained very limited. Another significant similarity in the spread and development of these beliefs is that both faiths would experience a split that would change history forever. In 1054, a combination of political tension, theological differences, and leadership disputes between Rome and Constantinople caused what become known as the “Great Schism”. The Great Schism created two separate churches, the Roman Catholic Church, and the Eastern Orthodox Church. These two churches remained under a state of excommunication from 1054 until 1965 when the leaders of the two churches finally agreed to meet and resume dialogue after
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