"David Leeming introduces the many mythologies of the Asian continent. Traveling through these pages, the reader may encounter the supreme Gautama Buddha; the elephant-headed Hindu god Ganesa; Chang O, the Lunar Toad and Chinese goddess of the Moon; the sacred Cambodian ruins of Angkor; and golden Mount Meru, home of the Hindu gods. Myths like the Stone and the Banana of Indonesian origin and the Indian Churning of the Ocean of Milk are likewise represented in detail, as are archetypal themes such as the hero quest, sacrifice, and descent to the underworld." "Assembled in an A to Z format, this dictionary presents the stories of the revered deities, sacred places, key events and epics, and recurring themes and traditions that make up the fabric of Asian mythology. There are specific entries addressing the key mythologies of the regions we now call India, China, Tibet, Central Asia, Southeast Asia, and Japan. Cross references highlight the diversity, interconnectedness, and complex beauty of Asian myth."--BOOK JACKET.
Designed for nonspecialists and students, this concise dictionary references the mythologies of India, China, Tibet, Central and Southeast Asia, and Japan. The authoritative text is clearly written, thorough in coverage, and stylistically distinguished. Based on extensive research, the brief entries embrace the major characters, revered deities, sacred places, key events, enduring themes, folklore, and traditions prevalent in the rich and varied fabric of Asian mythology and religion. Readers will find both quasi-familiar terms (Vedic, Hara Krishna, mantra, yoga) and more obscure citations (Ganesa, Chang O, Lunar Toad, Kamsa); broad overviews of specific cultures and their mythic foundations are also included. An extensive network of cross references highlights the diversity, interrelatedness, and complex beauty of Eastern spirituality. A recognized authority, University of Connecticut professor Leeming has written several books on world myth (e.g., A Dictionary of Creation Myths). This significant lexicon is a vital and relevant reference for all collections. Richard K. Burns, MSLS, Hatboro, PA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
David Leeming was formerly Professor of English and Comparative Literature at the University of Connecticut. He is the author of many books, including The World of Myth, Mythology: The Voyage of the Hero, and Dictionary of Creation Myths, all published by OUP.