|← Religion and Health||The Story of Islamist Movements →|
How the Royal Power Was Expressed In the Iron Age Canaan (Israel)
Expression of power is inherent in the culture of a people and influences how they relate in relation to their faith and relations with others. The Iron Age is divided into two distinct periods known as iron I and iron II. Cultural breaks were evident in the periods throughout the region. The differences were also influenced by changes in people inhabiting the regions across the periods. In Iron Age Canaan, there was evidence of the appearance of Armaean and other sea people in the Bronze Age. Evidence of these changes and the cultures practiced in Canaan during the Iron Age can be found in the excavations at Ugarit, which have adequately documented evidence of the Canaanite religion in the Iron Age (Nakhai, 2001).
The states of Israel and Judah rose in the ninth and tenth century. They exercised significant control over the regions because of the decline of other dominant powers of Egypt and Assyria. Canaan does not refer to a single state, but a geographical area occupied by different people over time. The differences between Canaan and Ugarit in the Iron Age were great implying that there were differences in the use and expression of power. There were external direct links of mercantile nature between Canaan and Ugarit, which are evident from texts found in different archaeological sites such as Ras Shamra (Sanders, 2012).
A collection of Ugaritic texts discovered indifferent sites in Syria and Palestine shows that the culture and language of Ugarit was widely spread throughout the region. It was discovered that the Canaanites were polytheistic with many ancient gods and goddesses. The main deity in the region was Elohim, but there were other deities such as Baal and El. Other religions had a significant influence on the religion. The Levant area is located between Egypt and Mesopotamia, whose religious influences percolated into the Canaanite region.
There were gods associated with the different ceremonies and events such as the New Year and other aspects such as crop fertility and livestock. The largest city in South Levant was Hazor. Temples and other cultic places uncovered at Hazor suggest that it enjoyed autonomy from Egypt. The HebrewUniversity’s archaeology department conducted these excavations between 1950 and 1969 (Mazar, 1990, p. 375). Hazor was the largest and most powerful city-state in Canaan. Issues concerning the destruction and the failure of the city to be occupied again are rather controversial. The settlement of Israelites in Canaan widens the horizon of the discussion in order to ensure clarity in the issues (Schafer-Lichtenberger, 2001, p105).
The main powers at the time were the Hittites and Egyptians, which collided with one another due to their claim to pre eminence. Other powers in the background were the Mitanni and Assur. Mitanni fell after a collision with the Hittites leaving room for the spheres of influence to be distinguished in Syria. The Assyrians conquered the state of Mitanni and extended towards the Euphrates. This posed a threat to the Hittite rule in the North Syrian states. At the state of Northern Beq’a in South Syria, the Hittites and Egyptians clashed resulting in a military clash. Hazor was the most prominent city-state in Northern Canaan in the late bronze period; however, its loyalty was questionable. Analysis of the biblical text also shows that the city of Hazor was existent at the time of the settlement by Israelites in Egypt. The same text in Judges shows that Hazor was not conquered under Deborah. Continuous settlement of Hazor cannot be verified by the archaeological findings, but it occurred after the construction of a fortress under Solomon. Royal power in Canaan was expressed in the form of conquests for city-states and extension of the rule over the weaker states by the greatest powers such as the Hittites and the Egyptians.
Aspects that are strangely out of form with conventional and universal healthcare practices must be considered as strange and alien and be eliminated from the considerations on which the healthcare needs are based. Studies have shown that the strict forms of Voodoo may tend to object to conventional medical practices by directing the rely strictly on spiritual and natural therapies. This would seem as a marked departure from the idea of God and medicine as embraced in the Sikh religion. The Sikh conceptualized the idea of God as an omnipresent being who willed love, goodness, and prosperity for humanity (Nesbitt, 2005).
These qualities have been appropriated to imply that the Sikh God provided insight to some people to have the power to mediate in the health needs of humanity. In the course of history, the Sikh religions have conceptualized healthcare as a gift from God. In this line of thought, the Sikhs have learnt to embrace healthcare as an aspect of being that represents God’s active interest in the well-being of his creation. Health practitioners would have to acclimatize to the different religious worldviews in order to gain insight into the perceptions of patients on the matter of healing and healthcare. Christian values on healthcare administration are forged out of the various discourses that emphasize on God’s love for humanity (Walters & Byl, 2007).
These approaches demonstrate that it is possible for people to moderate their systems of healthcare provision by determining the degree to which they are influenced by religious backgrounds. Quality provision of healthcare demands that the needs of the patients must be understood in the totality of their cultural, religious, and social identities.
Studies on the efficacy of healthcare administration have offered that a deep awareness and appreciation of the cultural and religious mindsets of the patients is an important first step towards offering quality healthcare services. The religious perceptions of the patients should be integrated into the conventional approaches of healthcare administration. This will facilitate the achievement of the best possible cooperation and response of the patient.