The Asrama System : The History and Hermeneutics of a Religious Institution: The History and Hermeneutics of a Religious Institution (Google eBook)

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Oxford University Press, Sep 11, 1993 - Religion - 288 pages
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The lesser known and explored of the two pillars of Hinduism--asrama and varna--asrama is the name given to a system of four distinct and legitimate ways of leading a religious life: as a celibate student, a married householder, a forest hermit, and a world renouncer. In this, the first full-length study of the asrama system, Olivelle uncovers its origin and traces its subsequent history. He examines in depth its relationship to other institutional and doctrinal aspects of the Brahmanical world and its position within Brahmanical theology, and assesses its significance within the history of Indian religion. Throughout, he argues that the asrama system is primarily a theological construct and that the system and its history should be carefully distinguished from the socio-religious institutions comprehended by the system and from their respective histories.
  

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Contents

Prologue
3
Background and Context
35
The Origins
73
Ingredients of Change
112
Ill THE CLASSICAL PERIOD
129
Development of the Classical System
161
The Aramasand OtherBrahmanical Institutions
183
The ASrama System in Medieval Theology
220
Epilogue
244
Index
263
Copyright

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