[b-hebrew] Amarna Letters

Yitzhak Sapir yitzhaksapir at gmail.com
Mon Dec 24 18:14:48 EST 2007


On Dec 24, 2007 8:58 PM, Jim Stinehart wrote:
>
> Yitzhak Sapir:
>
> You wrote:  "Amenhotep IV was not monotheistic."
>
> Amenhotep IV/Akhenaten/Akh-n-Aten Wa-n-Ra was "monotheistic" in the same
> sense as the Patriarchs are portrayed in Genesis as being "monotheistic".  Their
> religious views were very different, but each was a type of monotheism.
>
> A.  Points of Similarity
>
> Each of Akhenaten and the Patriarchs worshipped only one main deity.
>
> Uniquely, neither Akhenaten nor the Patriarchs had any statue of their deity.
>
> Neither Akhenaten nor the Patriarchs rigorously denied the existence of other
> deities.
>
> Each of Akhenaten and the Patriarchs often looked the other way in the face
> of other individuals having statues of minor deities.

> Given the complete difference in their conceptions of the deity, it seems
> unlikely that Akhenaten influenced the Hebrews' core religious views, or that the
> Hebrews influenced Akhenaten's core religious views.  Yet they could
> nevertheless view each other as being "fellow travelers" regarding religious matters,
> after a fashion, because they were the only monotheists in the world, and the
> only people who did not have a statue of their main deity.

I had confused with Amenhophis III.

Interestingly, though, you picked EA 27 which was sent during Akhenaten's 2nd
year of reign, ibefore he moved his capital (and probably the earlier
part, because
the comment specifically notes the first winter month).

For a discussion of Akhenaten's religious views, p whether he would have viewed
Hebrews as "fellow travelers" and even what Akhenaten's monotheism was like
during the 2nd year of his reign, follow the tinyurl link inside the
following post:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ANE-2/message/3167

Yitzhak Sapir



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