Considering the Asian Religions: A Guide to Undersanding, Evaluating, and Appreciating

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TEACH Services, Inc., 2008 - Asia - 391 pages
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Here in one volume is a readable and well-grounded overview of Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Daoism, and Shinto. It also aims to be a guide for those who are considering the Asian religions as possible sources of spiritual enrichment. Knowing the basic features of those religious traditions is crucial for understanding both the ancient cultures and today's dynamic civilization of Asia - from India through Southeast Asia, from China to Japan. Based on sound scholarship but written for the general reader, Considering the Asian Religions focuses on the major historical developments in these traditions, with a concluding chapter on significant changes in modern times. It avoids encylopedic coverage, opting for clear explanations over exhaustive detail. Not limiting itself to a neutral recitation of facts, this book offers end-of-chapter evaluations from the standpoint of a Westerner committed to the core values of modernity - reason, cultural pluralism, and a more just and humane world for all. Those conclusions present both a challenge to some of the Asian religious beliefs and practices and a profound appreciation for ways they can be used to deepen and transform our own religious sensibilities.
 

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Contents

Priests and Rituals
The Soul of the Universe
The Righteous Cosmos
Divine Love
BUDDHISM
The Savior Sage
Ultimate Reality and the Final Goal of Existence
Monks and Merit
The Sage of Virtue
The Way of Nature
The Pure Self
THE ASIAN RELIGIONS IN THE CONTEMPORARY WORLD
Confronting Modernity
Considering Modernity
Timeline for Asian Religions
Glossary

The Compassionate Cosmos
THE RELIGIONS OF CHINA AND JAPAN
The Way of the Ancestors

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