Well it's pretty simple. I beeline for hinduism at beggining, and try to grab only a few other relegions. I then use a combo of vasslage and theocracy, build a barracks in Sparta(always my warfare city) and then mass phanlaxes. I choose the person I'm going to pick on by about 250 AD based on who's closest and who's weakest... I then usually get about 2 promotions for the phanlaxes, which is usually Combat II and Combat III. All new cities I recieve I use a Great Artist to expand their borders, taking advantage of the Philosiphical advantage. They become mini-war factories, and I continue on. Ok, maybe not so simple. Good strategy?