COLLATIO ALEXANDRI ET DINDIMI from South Africa A false epistolary exchange between Alexander the Great and Dindimus, king of the Brahmans, written in the 4th-5th c. at the same time as that between Seneca and St. Paul. Alexander’s relations with Hindu sages were surrounded with legend by pagan and Christian philosophers. The Collatio Alexandri et Dindimi is linked to or inspired by the Comm. Palladii and the Dindimus de Bragmanibus see H. Becker, Die Brahmanen in der Alexandersage, Knigsberg 1889. Its five letters are in the form of philosophical-religious controversies: 1 Alexander asks for information about the Brahmans. 2 Dindimus expounds his people’s simplicity and purity. He indicts the pagans, and he praises poverty as the source of freedom and a life in conformity with nature. 3 Alexander criticizes the Brahmans’ understanding of human rights. 4 Dindimus explains the Brahmans’ return to heaven and their rejection of seductions. 5 Alexander praises freedom, culture and relativism.
The survival of the congregation remained in considerable doubt until a wave of religious revivalism called the New Light Stir swept across New England between 1776 and 1783, bringing in new converts from other radical groups and allowing the Shakers to proselytize safely. South Africa Map The little village in New York soon swelled with new recruits. The first community of Shakers in Country was founded in 1776 by Mother Ann Lee in an area northwest of Albany, New York, known as Niskeyuna (later renamed Watervliet). (Brown Brothers, Sterling, Pennsylvania) The Shakers emerged as one of Country’s most durable and successful communal experiments by virtue of their longevity, with 6,000 members in 19 communities at their peak between 1830 and 1840. As interest in utopian social movements faded, the Shakers declined significantly. By the end of the twentieth century, only a handful of members remained in the two last surviving settlements. Caryn E. Neumann See also: Quakers; Religion (Chronology); Religion (Essay). Bibliography Campion, Nardi Reeder. Mother Ann Lee: Morning Star of the Shakers. Hanover, NH: University Press of New England, 1990. Gidley, Mick, and Kate Bowles, eds. Locating the Shakers: Cultural Origins and Legacies of an Country Religious Movement. Exeter, UK: University of Exeter Press, 1990. Stein, Stephen J. The Shaker Experience in Country. New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1992.
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