Journeys East: 20th Century Western Encounters with Eastern Religious Traditions
This is the first book to treat the impact of religious, philosophical and psychological traditions of the East on Western intellectuals, artists, travellers and spiritual seekers in the twentieth century. Addressed to both general readers and scholars of religion, it is especially valuable for its penetrating and inter-religious analysis of two of the most compelling themes now facing the world: the emergence of cross-cultural religious understanding of the natural order and ecological crisis and the metaphysical basis for both the formal diversity and essential unity of religious traditions of both East and West. The West has long romanticized the "mysterious" East, but it has, also, judged its traditions as "uncivilized." Our notions about Eastern spirituality have been formed by a succession of travellers, scientists, artists, intellectuals, poets, philosophers and missionaries, as well as by Eastern travellers who have spent time in the West. This book helps us to recognize the influence of Eastern ideas upon modern Western thought by tracing the history of engagements between East and West up until the present day. It concludes with a section that helps us to perceive the timeless value of the many Eastern contributions to the West's current intellectual and spiritual state.
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