Critically assesses recent debates about the colonial construction of Hinduism. Written by experts in their field, the chapters present historical and empirical arguments as well as theoretical reflections on the topic, offering new insights into the nature of the construction of religion in India.
Religion is an exiting field of study. It invites an ongoing work of interpretation and reinterpretation, thinking and rethinking. This book includes a range of religious studies, interreligious diaologue, and philosophical-theological topics that will be of interest to a wide diversity of readers.
The overwhelming majority of people in the world--85%--are religious, and more religions are now practiced in the United States than in any other country. Religion plays a critical role in international politics, in the global economy, and in a wide variety of social and cultural interactionson the domestic front. Even though religion is such an integral part of today's world, many Americans have difficulty discussing it publicly. They are often unfamiliar with any religion but their own, finding other religions mysterious or even threatening.Offering a brief and accessible point of entry into the subject, Rethinking Religion: A Concise Introduction begins by highlighting the significance of religion in modern society and providing a simple definition that goes beyond vague notions of "faith" or "belief in God." Drawing materialfrom a diverse range of religions--including Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and primal religions--author Will Deming walks readers through thirty examples of how religions "work," exploring the significance of religious events and pronouncements. He also considers several topicsthat continue to fascinate and challenge Westerners: the ethics of studying someone else's religion, the "truth" of religion, the possibilities for preferring one religion over another, religious pluralism, and the contentious dialogue between science and religion.Enhanced by an innovative glossary of religious terms and numerous pictures and analyses of everyday religious activities, Rethinking Religion: A Concise Introduction is ideal for introducing students to the concept of religion and for courses in comparative and world religions. It is alsocaptivating reading for theologians, scholars, and anyone interested in the topic.
Jesus Truth-Gatherings (Yeshu Satsangs) among Hindus and Sikhs in Northwest India
Author: Darren Duerksen
Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers
When Hindus and Sikhs become followers of Christ, what happens next? Should they join Christian churches that often look and feel very unfamiliar to them? Or to what degree can or should they remain a part of their Hindu/Sikh communities and practices? Uncomfortable with the answers that were provided to them by Christian leaders in northwest India, six followers of Christ began Yeshu satsangs (Jesus truth-gatherings) that sought to follow Christ and the teachings of the Bible while remaining connected to their Hindu and/or Sikh communities. Ecclesial Identities in a Multi-faith Context analyzes the contextualized practices and identities of these leaders and their gatherings, situating these in the religious history of the region and the personal histories of the leaders themselves. Whereas Christians worry that the Yeshu satsangs and related "insider movements" are syncretizing their beliefs and are not properly identifiable as "churches," Ecclesial Identities analyzes the Yeshu satsang's narratives and practices to find vibrant expressions of local church that are grappling with questions and tensions of social and religious identity. In addition to its ethnographic approach, Ecclesial Identities also utilizes recent sociological and anthropological theory in identity formation and critical realism, as well as discussions of biblical ecclesiology from the book of Acts. This study will be a helpful resource for those interested in global Christianity, the practices and identities of churches in religiously plural environments, and the creative ways in which Christ-followers can missionally engage people of other faiths.
The Theosophical Society (est. 1875 in New York by H. P. Blavatsky, H. S. Olcott and others) is increasingly becoming recognized for its influential role in shaping the alternative new religious and cultural landscape of the late nineteenth and the twentieth century, especially as an early promoter of interest in Indian and Tibetan religions and philosophies. Despite this increasing awareness, many of the central questions relating to the early Theosophical Society and the East remain largely unexplored. This book is the first scholarly anthology dedicated to this topic. It offers many new details about the study of Theosophy in the history of modern religions and Western esotericism. The essays in Imagining the East explore how Theosophists during the formative period understood the East and those of its people with whom they came into contact. The authors examine the relationship of the theosophical approach with orientalism and aspects of the history of ideas, politics, and culture at large and discuss how these esoteric or theosophical representations mirrored conditions and values current in nineteenth-century mainstream intellectual culture. The essays also look at how the early Theosophical Society's imagining of the East differed from mainstream 'orientalism' and how the Theosophical Society's mission in India was distinct from that of British colonialism and Christian missionaries.
Is religion an obstacle to the values of modernity? Popular and scholarly opinion says that it is. In a world gripped in a clash of civilizations, religious absolutism seems to threaten the modern virtues of tolerance, reason, and freedom. This collection of historical essays argues that this popular view--religion versus modernity--is used by the politically powerful to construct the religious as irrational and antimodern. The authors study how nationalists, state officials, missionaries, and scholars in the West and in the colonized world defined and redefined the relationship between the political and the religious --From publisher's description.
Salvation History, Translation, and the Making of Bengali Islam
Author: Ayesha A. Irani
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
"The Muhammad Avatāra: Salvation History, Translation, and the Making of Bengali Islam reveals the powerful role of vernacular translation in the Islamization of Bengal.Its focus is on examines the magnificent seventeenth-century Nabīvaṃśa of SaiyadSultān, who lived in Arakanese-controlled Chittagong to affirm the power of vernacular translation in the Islamization of Bengal. Drawing upon the Arabo-Persian Tales of the Prophets genre, the Nabīvaṃśa ("The Lineage of the Prophet") retells the life of the Prophet Muhammad for the first time to Bengalis in their mother-tongue. Saiyad Sultān lived in Arakanese-controlled Chittagong,in a period when Gauṛiya Vaiṣṇava missionary activity was at its zenith. This book delineates the challenges faced by the author in articulating the pre-eminence of Islam and its Arabian prophet in a place land where multiple religious affiliations were common, and when GauṛīyaVaiṣṇava missionary activity was at its zenith. Sultān played a pioneering role in setting into motion various lexical, literary, performative, theological, and, ultimately, ideological processes that led to the establishment of a distinctively Bengali Islam in East Bengal, while yet shaping a distinctively Bengali Islam. At the heart of this transformation of a people and their culture lay the persuasiveness of translation to refresh salvation history for a people onoin a new Islamic frontier. The Nabīvaṃśa not only kindled a veritable translation movement of Arabo-Persian Islamic literature into Bangla, but established the grammar of creative translation that was to become canonical for this regional tradition. This text-critical study lays bare the sophisticated strategies of translation used by a prominent early modern Muslim Bengali intellectual to invite others to his faith"--
Hindu-Muslim Intellectual Interactions in Early Modern South Asia
Author: Shankar Nair
Publisher: University of California Press
A free open access ebook is available upon publication. Learn more at www.luminosoa.org. During the height of Muslim power in Mughal South Asia, Hindu and Muslim scholars worked collaboratively to translate a large body of Hindu Sanskrit texts into the Persian language. Translating Wisdom reconstructs the intellectual processes and exchanges that underlay these translations. Using as a case study the 1597 Persian rendition of the Yoga-Vasistha—an influential Sanskrit philosophical tale whose popularity stretched across the subcontinent—Shankar Nair illustrates how these early modern Muslim and Hindu scholars drew upon their respective religious, philosophical, and literary traditions to forge a common vocabulary through which to understand one another. These scholars thus achieved, Nair argues, a nuanced cultural exchange and interreligious and cross-philosophical dialogue significant not only to South Asia’s past but also its present.
Sikhism, Ayyavazhi, Punjabi Folk Religion, Rethinking Religion in India, Shaheed Shrine, Aaiyyanism
Author: Books Group Staff
Publisher: General Books
Chapters: Sikhism, Ayyavazhi, Punjabi Folk Religion, Rethinking Religion in India, Shaheed Shrine, Aaiyyanism. Source: Wikipedia. Pages: 91. Not illustrated. Free updates online. Purchase includes a free trial membership in the publisher's book club where you can select from more than a million books without charge. Excerpt: Part of the series onAyyavazhi Ayyavazhi (Tamil: Malayalam: Ayyavali, IPA: -"Path of the father") is a dharmic belief system that originated in South India in the 19th century. It is cited as an independent monistic religion by several newspapers, government reports and academic researchers. In Indian censuses, however, the majority of its followers declare themselves as Hindus. Therefore, Ayyavazhi is also considered a Hindu sect. Ayyavazhi is centered on the life and preachings of Ayya Vaikundar; its ideas and philosophy are based on the holy texts Akilattirattu Ammanai and Arul Nool. Accordingly, Vaikundar was the Purna avatar of Narayana. Ayyavazhi shares many ideas with Hinduism in its mythology and practice, but differs considerably in its concepts of good and evil and dharma. Ayyavazhi is classified as a dharmic belief because of its central focus on dharma. Ayyavazhi first came to public attention in the 19th century as a Hindu sect. Vaikundar's activities and the growing number of followers caused a reformation and revolution in 19th century Travancorean and Tamil society, surprising the feudal social system of South India. It also triggers a number of reform movements including those of Narayana Guru, Vallalar etc. Though Ayyavazhi followers are spread across India, they are primarily present in South India, especially concentrated in Tamil Nadu and Kerala. The number of practitioners is estimated to be between 700,000 and 8,000,000, although the exact number is unknown, since Ayyavazhis are reported as Hindus during censuses. Swamithope pathi, the primary Pathi among the Pancha pathi, the religious...http: //booksllc.net/?id=202207
Religion, Community, and the Politics of Democracy in India
Author: David E. Ludden
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
This classic collection by eminent scholars takes a critical look at the mobilizations, genealogies, and interpretive conflicts that have attended efforts to make India Hindu since the rise to power of Hindu political parties from 1980. The second edition has been updated with a new preface in which Ludden provides an incisive analysis of the recently held elections and highlights how Hindutva operates inside India's political mainstream.
Among Library Journal's picks of the most important reference works of the millennium - with the Encyclopedia Judaica and the New Catholic Encyclopedia - Mircea Eliade's Encyclopedia of Religion won the American Library Associations' Dartmouth Medal in 1988 and is widely regarded as the standard reference work in the field. This second edition, which is intended to reflect both changes in academia and in the world since 1987, includes almost all of the 2,750 original entries - many heavily updated - as well as approximately 600 entirely new articles. Preserving the best of Eliade's cross-cultural approach, while emphasizing religion's role within everyday life and as a unique experience from culture to culture, this new edition is the definitive work in the field for the 21st century. An international team of scholars and contributors have reviewed, revised and added to every word of the classic work, making it relevant to the questions and interests of all researchers. The result is an essential purchase for libraries of all kinds.
Picturing the Nation presents a visual history of modern India and explores visual representations of India from the late nineteenth to the late twentieth centuries. The essays in this volume have illustrations, which have all been reproduced in full colour on art paper. The illustrated pages have also been placed within the chapters that refer to them. The images include chromolithographs, posters, cards and photographs of architecture and cultural displays. The book has a comprehensive introduction by Richard Davis and it attempts to answer the question how is it that so many persons have been persuaded to die willingly for something as recently imagined as the nation? Market: University and college departments of history, sociology, social anthropology, the visual arts, art history. The book is also accessible to a wider audience interested in the visual media and in the history of modern India. This is the second book out in the Indian market in this area and the earlier one is Beyond Appearances? edited by Sumathi Ramaswamy (Sage 2003), which is a single colour book.