Patterns in Comparative Religion
"An important and quite beautiful book".-Library Journal. "[Eliade] throws a searching and humbling light on our modern fragmented existence".-[London] Times Literary Supplement. "Treatment of such subjects as the meaning of the sacred, sun and moon worship, water symbolism, sacred stones, fertility cults, the earth mother, symbols of regeneration and the myth of eternal renewal, will interest the general reader as well as the scholar".-New York Times. "It is doubtful that one could encounter a more impressive work of scholarship and insight. . . . All serious students of religion would derive enormous profit from the reading of this work".-Kirkus. In this era of increased knowledge the essence of religious phenomena eludes the psychologists, sociologists, linguists, and other specialists because they do not study it as religious. According to Mircea Eliade, they miss the one irreducible element in religious phenomena-the element of the sacred. Eliade abundantly demonstrates universal religious experience and shows how humanity's effort to live within a sacred sphere has manifested itself in myriad cultures from ancient to modern times; how certain beliefs, rituals, symbols, and myths have, with interesting variations, persisted. Mircea Eliade's works include the multivolume History of Religious Ideas. John C. Holt is a professor of religion at Bowdoin College and the author of The Religious World of Kirti Sri: Buddhism, Art, and Politics of Late Medieval Sri Lanka.
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THE SKY AND SKY GODS
THE SUN AND SUNWORSHIP
THE WATERS AND WATER SYMBOLISM
THE EARTH WOMAN AND FERTILITY
RITES AND SYMBOLS OF
AGRICULTURE AND FERTILITY CULTS
OF THE WORLD
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agriculture ancient animal appearance become beginning beliefs birth bring bull called centre ceremonies comes common connected cosmic cosmos creation cult cultures custom dead death divinity earth elements Eliade examples existence experience explained expressed fact fertility fields force Frazer function give given goddess gods hand heaven hierophanies human idea important India initiation instance king later living London looked lunar magic man's manifestation means mind moon mother myth mythical mythology nature never notion offered once origin Paris pattern plant present primitive profane rain reality regeneration Religion religious represented revealed rites ritual sacred seeds seen shows significance simply sometimes sort souls spirits spring stone Supreme symbolism things thought tradition tree tribes universe various vegetation whole woman women worship