Monotheistic religious education, inaugurated by Judaism, influenced, and was in turn influenced by, other educational traditions, including the classical (polytheistic) tradition. The Early Middle Ages saw the decadence of the Christian West and the flowering of Islamic culture and science. The Jews were scattered in Islamic lands, and Islamic religion and culture was as profoundly influenced by Judaism as it was by Christianity. The heterogeneous Islamic medieval world stretched from Spain to India, and although higher learning in Islamic societies varied in time and from place to place, it contributed considerably to learning—a contribution that can hardly be summarized into a few lines. A few general aspects can, however, be drawn.