History of Religionby Karen Farrington
The influence of religion can be felt in every sphere of our lives - from politics to diet. The need to place one's faith in a code of beliefs can be traced from the time of the Neanderthals. The cultural melting pot of our modern cities places great importance on understanding the world's religions. The History of Religion provides a jargon-free analysis encompassing all the major beliefs. From prehistoric religion to Waco, this authoritative work examines the worship, practices, gods prophets, leading figures, festivals, myths, and misconceptions of every major faith.
- Sterling Publishing
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I don't know how this got published. Farrington makes broad statements about what she feels are the start to religions in her "Prehistoric Religion" section, but she has nothing to back up these statements. For example, about Stonehenge, she writes, "...it is difficult to believe that cloaked Druids...did not carry out religious rituals there, some of which undoubtedly involved human sacrifice." Really, how does she figure???? She then goes on to dispute her own claim, "Yet modern historians believe this view was perpetuated in error by overworked imagination in the 18th and 19th centuries." Farrington certainly shows her own overactive imagination throughout this book. There are no footnotes and no bibliography. She makes outlandish statements of fact where there is no support. On page 13, she states that the drawings found at Lascaux "must have had a magical or religious significance which has so far escaped our understanding." She writes that she can't believe it's was just randomly drawn "graffiti". I agree it wasn't graffiti, but to attach religious significance where ancient man may have simply been drawing what he saw on what he had available, is extreme. Without references, you really can't take her declarations as fact. I do know her section on Baha'i is "off". I wanted to know more about the religion when someone I knew became Baha'i. An essential element is that Baha'u'llah did not know he was chosen by God until he was imprisoned for a long period in squalid conditions and with little food. Therefore, was he hallucinating or did he have a vision from God. After going through various sections, I had to stop reading this nonsense and tossed it in the trash. It is not a history of religion, but more of a long drawn out opinion about what she considers to be religiously significant. I picked up my copy of this book at a library sale which at least supported the library.
Most excellent book on the subject of religions this one is. Clearly shows how each and every religion had a specific beginning in time, and that before its specific beginning in time that it did not exist, and as such each religion's birth really is the scene of a crime, i.e. the crime being perjury, bearing false witness what have ye, some intentional, some perhaps not in the case of psychotics, but in either case pure chicanery. None of which is to suggest that the Creator of the Existence Itself does not exist, for of course it does, it is just that every religion is a crime scene for the prevaricators that started them, claiming an exclusive path, to the same single over arching truth of infinite splendor and detail, beyond all religions' ability to describe, and this book so cleanly drives this point home in taking all the mystery out of how each religion may have begun with mundane yet nevertheless presumably factual accounts as well as that can be determined after the fact, nevertheless a crime scene where the truth itself was maimed. more on this here: http : // goo . gl / 92eF0 http : // goo . gl / p1lW http : // goo . gl / HDxUV http : // goo . gl / GN4D http : // goo . gl / tvNDW
The author does an excellent job in categorizing the different religions from Prehistoric times to the Present Times. An area of particular interest was the 'Classical Paganism' section. Not too many World Religion authors acknowledge these Ancient Belief systems. Although this section is brief, it does touch on the historical aspects of the different Pagan regions. After reading this book, it was clear that the author is not caught in the phallic description of religious history, rather has taken the time to incorporate an equitable description of the different world religions! Bravo, excellent job!
I am impressed with the truthful analysis of the many religions in this book. It is truly unbiased. Although some details are hearsay, that is how information was handed down for ancient religions. The author did a good job outlining the history of religion in this book. I recommend it to everyone. If it offends you, then you may be a bit biased yourself :)
I took the time to read this book and do not recommend this book to others to provide an accurate overview of religions. Myself taking personal offense to the section on Mormonism. None of the statements given provided accurate or true information. A quote was given that was said to have come from the Book of Mormon. It did not. It was given in a talk by a member of the Church's general authorities, not from the Book of Mormon. Other pieces of information were not fact but rumors, or opinions. I do not believe this book was intended to give a simple overview of religion, but was used as a personal agenda against some religions. This book was neither objective nor informative. I do not recommend this book for use in finding out information on other religions!!