Attitudes Toward Religion and Trade
Christianity and Islam are both very unique yet different religions. Their attitudes toward merchants and trade varied, and changed as time passed. Christians and Muslims were similar because they both said you should not cheat people, and they got most trade ideas from the Bible or Qur’an. They were different because Islam thought trade was good from the very beginning. Christians did not think that way. As time passed, Christians began to believe trade was good. Islam stayed constant. Over time, Christians and Muslims both started to be for trade and merchants. The Islamic points of view I have looked at are located in documents two, five and seven. The Christian views I recognized are in the first, third, fourth and sixth documents. In the following paragraphs, I will show you both religions attitudes towards trade and merchants.
Firstly, Christians and Muslims both approached trade very differently. Muslims always influenced trade even from the very beginning. Muhammad was a trader before he was a prophet. Since he was a prophet, Muslims thought that trading had a positive influence in his life and helped him to achieve riches and reach salvation. In document 2, Muslims do start off saying that the Qur’an states the traders are cheaters and they don’t sell their items for what they are worth but for more. They said the honest Muslim merchant would take rank. Clearly, they may be saying that they cheat… but wither you cheat or not trading is encouraged either way. Christians thought differently than the Muslims. Around 70-80 C.E, the Christian Bible stated a rich man should hardly get into the kingdom of heaven. Christians believed cheating and trading would not lead you anywhere close to heaven or salvation so they opposed it.
Christianity and Islam both shared some similarities as shown in the documents. Both of these religions thought it wasn’t right to cheat people. In Document 4, it says, “but no man wishes to buy a thing for more than its worth.” “Therefore no man should sell a thing to another man for more than its worth.” Thomas Aquinas wrote this document in 1273 and it shows that cheating is not the answer. He says it is no longer the equality of justice, and it is not right. According to Document 5, Ibn Khaldun (Muslim scholar) says that they must buy and sell to seek profits, but once they seek it for their own personal gain, their selfish acts inevitably affect the soul. He says that even though trade is a natural means of livelihood, most employs are tricks aimed to make a profit, which leans toward decline in the future. Another similarity is all trade beliefs came from the Bible or Qur’an. Most Christians and Muslims don’t have a chance to think of their opinion because they are already born into a life where it is all laid out in the book. Many resources are bias and an average Muslim or Christian may not think the same as the book. Most feel obligated to agree because of their religion. Their very first ideas came from that book and through change in time and…