Bringing the Gods to Mind: Mantra and Ritual in Early Indian Sacrifice / Edition 1

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Overview


This elegantly written book introduces a new perspective on Indic religious history by rethinking the role of mantra in Vedic ritual. In Bringing the Gods to Mind, Laurie Patton takes a new look at mantra as "performed poetry" and in five case studies draws a portrait of early Indian sacrifice that moves beyond the well-worn categories of "magic" and "magico-religious" thought in Vedic sacrifice. Treating Vedic mantra as a sophisticated form of artistic composition, she develops the idea of metonymy, or associational thought, as a major motivator for the use of mantra in sacrificial performance. Filling a long-standing gap in our understanding, her book provides a history of the Indian interpretive imagination and a study of the mental creativity and hermeneutic sophistication of Vedic religion.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780520240872
  • Publisher: University of California Press
  • Publication date: 6/27/2005
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author


Laurie L. Patton is Winship Distinguished Research Professor in the Humanities and Professor of Early Indian Religion at Emory University. She is author of Myth as Argument: The Brhaddevata as Canonical Commentary (1996), editor of Jewels of Authority: Women and Text in the Hindu Tradition (2002), and author of Fire's Goal: Poems from a Hindu Year (2003), among other books.
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Table of Contents

1 Poetry, ritual, and associational thought in early India : the sources 15
2 Poetry, ritual, and associational thought in early India : the theories 38
3 Viniyoga : the recovery of a hermeneutic principle 59
4 Fire, light, and ingesting over time 91
5 The Vedic "other" : spoilers of success 117
6 A history of the quest for mental power 142
7 The poetics of paths : mantras of journeys 152
8 A short history of heaven : from making to gaining the highest abode 168
Conclusions : laughter and the creeper mantra 182
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