The power of one God

One True God: Historical Consequences of Monotheism. By Rodney Stark. Princeton University, 338 pp., $24.95.

Religiously motivated violence dominates the world's agenda in a way that it has not done for centuries. Rarely in recent times have the political, social and military ramifications of a particular interpretation of a monotheistic tradition so dramatically commanded attention. But monotheisms have always been powerful. From ancient times to the present, various forms of monotheistic faith have repeatedly unleashed tremendous energies for both good and ill. Indeed, as Rodney Stark suggests, monotheism may well be the most influential innovation in human history.


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