ORCID ID

0000-0002-5126-2663

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2016

Publication Title

Islam and Christian–Muslim Relations

Abstract

This article investigates the portrayals of the Paulicians in early Islamic sources and specifically analyses the role that Paulician religious views play in Islamic anti-Christian writings. The study also gives insights into the nature of materials that were available to Muslim scholars and the strategies they applied in constructing coherent arguments to refute certain Christian religious beliefs. In doing so, the study touches upon Muslims’ religious needs and scholarly curiosity, which sheds light on their intellectual interactions with non-Islamic religious beliefs and philosophical ideas. The article demonstrates that references to Paulician religious beliefs can be found primarily in early Christian–Islamic polemics. Muslim polemicists, most of whom were Muʿtazilites, attempted to demonstrate the soundness and the coherence of Islamic tenets vis-à-vis inadequacies and contradictions in Christian doctrines. The reliance of Muslim polemicists on heresiographical discourse therefore constituted an important strategy to substantiate their polemical arguments. Two major issues stand out in Islamic portrayals of Paulician doctrines: the centrality of Paul of Samosata in the history of the sect, and his association with the view that Jesus was a human being devoid of divinity.

DOI

10.1080/09596410.2016.1218650

Version

Preprint

Volume

27

Issue

4

Available for download on Wednesday, May 02, 2018

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