“O sole God, like whom is no other!” The idea of one God was first expressed by the pharaoh Akhenaten who lived between 1352-1336 bce. Over 3000 years later, three major religions are still struggling to understand and incorporate this seemingly simple concept of monotheism. In this course we will explore some of the issues that surround monotheism, and examine how the idea of one God has shaped the development of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam individually and in relation to each other.

Course Goals:  Students will be able to explain the nature, role and meaning of ideas of God in western consciousness and culture; articulate the problems that a monotheistic view of God present and describe some of the ways practitioners resolve these problems; and more generally demonstrate a working understanding of what religion is and what it means to study religion from an academic perspective.