Indian Religions: The Spiritual Traditions of South Asia
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Book ID : 12854
ISBN-10 : 81-7824-038-6 / 8178240386
of Publication :
of Publication :
Language : English
xxii, 619p., 23 cm.
CONTENTS:- Introduction. I. Foundations (c. 1500 BCE to c. 300 CE): 1. The Veda. 2. The Upanishads. 3. Jainism. 4. Theravada Buddhism. 5. Samkhya and Yoga. II. Developments (c. 200 BCE to c. 1000 CE): 6. The Bhagavad Gita. 7. Mahayana and Vajrayana Buddhism. 8. The Tantras. 9. The Puranas. III. Elaborations (c. 150 to 1700 CE): 10. Spiritual philosophies. 11. Indo-Persian Sufism. IV. Reformulations (c. 700 to1850): 12. Siddhas, Yogis and others. 13. The Bhakti movement. 14. The sants. 15. The Sikh Gurus. 16. Popular Sufism. V. Continuity and innovation (1850 to 1990): 17. Twelve mystics of modern India. 18. Four mystic poets. Index of proper names. Index and glossary of terms.
Indian Religions is an anthology of written and oral texts by spiritual teachers from South Asia. The period covered is some 3500 years--from the period of the Rig Veda to the 1980s. More than a hundred mystics are included. All the major traditions (Vedic, Hindu, Jain Buddhist, Sufi and Sikh) as well as heterodox and transgressive traditions, are represented. No important mystic is omitted, and a number of less-known ones are included, among them women and spiritualists from the lower castes. Each selection is sufficiently long to give a good idea of the source. Translations are chosen for straightforwardness and readability. Texts in which the mystic speaks of his or her own experience are given prominence. The book is divided into eighteen sections, each of which represents a major tradition or group of traditions. Each section and subsection is introduced by an extended note. Short notes are also provided in order to illuminate individual texts and teachers. The editor's introduction discusses the phenomenon of spiritual experience and its relationship to organised religion. Current controversies in the study of mysticism are also discussed.