Interpreting the Sacred: Ways of Viewing Religion / Edition 2

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Overview

William Paden's classic exploration in religious studies, with a new introduction

In the current climate, Interpreting the Sacred provides a fresh, thorough way to consider and compare various religious belief systems. Paden puts forth the idea that our understanding of religion influences our understanding of ourselves and our world. Updated with a new introduction, this book is for anyone who wants to consider and discuss religious beliefs.

This book introduces readers to some common forms of interpretation, and "makes available to the general public an understanding of religion, and of how religion has come to be viewed by scholars, that is at the cutting edge of study in the academy but not as a part of public discourse."--John B. Cobb, Jr.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'To appreciate the fascinating, forbidding landscape of current religious theory, one needs a clear map annotated by an observant guide. Interpreting the Sacred qualifies on both counts.' --Christian Century
Library Journal
Paden ( Religious Words , LJ 12/88) examines how social anthropologists, depth psychologists, comparative religionists, and religious people (especially Christians) interpret religion. An individual's interpretation is influenced by his or her worldview, audience, and object under analysis (e.g., ritual). By being aware of different interpretations, one's own is supplemented without being supplanted--this is an advantage of religious pluralism's ``relativity.'' Paden does not share his faith, despite the claim that if he did readers would better understand his views. This scholarly work is clearly written yet assumes some prior study of religion. This is one of a few excellent books about the subject. Recommended for academic and large public libraries.-- Steven A. Fondiller, St. John's Univ. Lib., Jamaica, N.Y.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780807077054
  • Publisher: Beacon
  • Publication date: 4/14/2003
  • Edition description: Revised/Updated
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 157
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.52 (h) x 0.50 (d)

Meet the Author

William Paden is professor and chair of the department of religion at the University of Vermont.
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