×

Uh-oh, it looks like your Internet Explorer is out of date.

For a better shopping experience, please upgrade now.

Convenient Myths: The Axial Age, Dark Green Religion, and the World that Never Was
     

Convenient Myths: The Axial Age, Dark Green Religion, and the World that Never Was

by Iain Provan
 

See All Formats & Editions

The contemporary world has been shaped by two important and potent myths. Karl Jaspers' construct of the "axial age" envisions the common past (800-200 BC), the time when Western society was born and world religions spontaneously and independently appeared out of a seemingly shared value set. Conversely, the myth of the "dark green golden age," as narrated by David

Overview

The contemporary world has been shaped by two important and potent myths. Karl Jaspers' construct of the "axial age" envisions the common past (800-200 BC), the time when Western society was born and world religions spontaneously and independently appeared out of a seemingly shared value set. Conversely, the myth of the "dark green golden age," as narrated by David Suzuki and others, asserts that the axial age and the otherworldliness that accompanied the emergence of organized religion ripped society from a previously deep communion with nature. Both myths contend that to maintain balance we must return to the idealized past. In Convenient Myths, Iain Provan illuminates the influence of these two deeply entrenched and questionable myths, warns of their potential dangers, and forebodingly maps the implications of a world founded on such myths.

Baylor University Press

Editorial Reviews

Society for Old Testament Study - R.S. Watson

Overall [ Convenient Myths] makes a persuasive case, albeit often against popular writers, and offers a salient warning against the uncritical appropriation of cultural assumptions.—,

All is Grist - Elliot Ritzema

This is an important book to read, not just for those who are tempted to believe in the axial age or dark green golden age, but for any people who are tempted to disrespect their dead neighbors by distorting history to pursue a present agenda.

From the Publisher

"Humankind has often been held captive by pictures and stories concerning its own remote past. By revealing the misunderstandings and misrepresentations of 'religion' perpetuated by two such modern stories, this important book both liberates us from unhealthy and potentially damaging assumptions and opens the way for a fresh evaluation of the phenomena of religious faith and practice as we encounter them. Groundbreaking."
-- Trevor Hart, Professor of Divinity, St. Mary's College, University of St. Andrews

"In Convenient Myths, Iain Provan not only challenges deep (and deeply mistaken) myths, but destroys them on the rocks of rugged history."

--Scot McKnight, Professor of New Testament, Northern Seminary

"Iain Provan has a long track record of reliable, insightful interpretation. Now he brings his acute critical eye to consider familiar mantras that have served for popular religious interpretation. As Provan knows (and shows), these mantras have done a lot of damage through distortion and generalized misrepresentation. Provan makes clear that we cannot do our interpretive work by reliance upon such generalizations, but must go deeply into the particularity of religious traditions. His book is a summons to critical work that resists much of the facile interpretation now so widespread among us."
--Walter Brueggemann, Professor Emeritus, Columbia Theological Seminary

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781602589964
Publisher:
Baylor University Press
Publication date:
10/01/2013
Pages:
171
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.90(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are Saying About This

Trevor Hart

Humankind has often been held captive by pictures and stories concerning its own remote past. By revealing the misunderstandings and misrepresentations of 'religion' perpetuated by two such modern stories, this important book both liberates us from unhealthy and potentially damaging assumptions and opens the way for a fresh evaluation of the phenomena of religious faith and practice as we encounter them. Groundbreaking.

Walter Brueggemann

Iain Provan has a long track record of reliable, insightful interpretation. Now he brings his acute critical eye to consider familiar mantras that have served for popular religious interpretation. As Provan knows (and shows), these mantras have done a lot of damage through distortion and generalized misrepresentation. Provan makes clear that we cannot do our interpretive work by reliance upon such generalizations, but must go deeply into the particularity of religious traditions. His book is a summons to critical work that resists much of the facile interpretation now so widespread among us.

Scot McKnight

In Convenient Myths, Iain Provan not only challenges deep (and deeply mistaken) myths, but destroys them on the rocks of rugged history.

Meet the Author

Iain Provan is the Marshall Sheppard Professor of Biblical Studies, Regent College. He lives in the Vancouver, Canada area.

Baylor University Press

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Post to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews