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One World, Many Religions: The Ways We Worship

Overview

Religious understanding is as important today than any other time in history. In this highly acclaimed book, Mary Pope Osborne introduces readers to the six major religions of the world. One World, Many Religions covers the history, beliefs, and practices of Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism. All have had a deep effect on the laws and customs of every country. They have shaped art, literature, music, and education. They have given the world magnificent stories, songs, ...
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Overview

Religious understanding is as important today than any other time in history. In this highly acclaimed book, Mary Pope Osborne introduces readers to the six major religions of the world. One World, Many Religions covers the history, beliefs, and practices of Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism. All have had a deep effect on the laws and customs of every country. They have shaped art, literature, music, and education. They have given the world magnificent stories, songs, buildings, holy objects, ceremonies, and festivals." From the Introduction to Many Religions, One World. Best-selling children's author Mary Pope Osborne presents an accessible and elegantly crafted volume that introduces young readers to the world's seven major religions. Six short readable chapters--perfectly targeted to fourth, fifth, and sixth graders--detail the history, beliefs, and practices of Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism. Handsomely designed and featuring fifty oversized color photographs and a full complement of reference materials, including a map, time line, and bibliography, this book provides a thorough and thoughtful presentation of the diverse ways people worship around the world.

-Outstanding introduction to world religion for young readers.
-Unanimously praised when first published in 1996
-Newly updated reference materials such as a glossary, map, timeline and bibliography complete this excellent book.
-Features over 50 full-color photos.

An illustrated introduction to comparative religion, discussing Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 4-7-A solid overview of the world's major religions. Osborne notes elements common to most faiths and provides a rationale for the focus on Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism in that order, all of which have a written tradition, so sources can be cited. The author covers the history, main figures, current status, and traditions or rituals associated with each faith. Back matter includes a population breakdown numerically and graphically. While the presentation is notable for its respect to each group, succinctness, and clarity, the text is not exhaustive. Holidays, for example, are covered in one or two sentences. Major points are not covered uniformly: while reincarnation is described under Hinduism, heaven and hell are not mentioned in Christianity. Readers requiring depth will do well to use books on individual faiths. This title succeeds in providing an overall context for readers by relating a given spiritual leader's time period or tenets to previously covered material. The artful, full-page, color and black-and-white photographs tell much of the story. The tight prose, abundant white space, and use of color make this title an attractive alternative to Hiley Ward's chattier My Friends' Beliefs Walker, 1988 o.p.; it offers a difference in flavor and scope to Betsy Maestro's The Story of Religion Clarion, 1996, illustrated with paintings. Most libraries will want to own Osborne's offering.-Wendy Lukehart, Dauphin County Library, Harrisburg, PA
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780679839309
  • Publisher: Random House Children's Books
  • Publication date: 10/28/1996
  • Edition description: REV
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 69
  • Sales rank: 158,188
  • Age range: 8 - 12 Years
  • Product dimensions: 9.05 (w) x 11.34 (h) x 0.47 (d)

Meet the Author

Mary Pope Osborne
Mary Pope Osborne grew up in the military, and by the time she was fifteen had lived in Oklahoma, Austria, Florida and four different army posts in Virginia and North Carolina.  After graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in the early 1970's, Mary traveled all over Europe, and spent the first six weeks of her trip living in a cave on the island of Crete.  She then joined up with a group of European young people and traveled in rickety vans through sixteen Asian countries, including Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India and Nepal.  She was a bartender, an acting teacher, a waitress, a travel agent, a window dresser, and a medical assistant -- all before becoming an author!  Now she is the author of many highly acclaimed picture books, early chapter books, middle-grade biographies, and young adult novels.  In February 1993, Mary was elected the 27th president of the Author's Guild, the oldest, most established organization for writers in the United States.

Mary her husband Will spilt their time between an apartment in Greenwich Village, New York and a cabin in Pennsylvania.  They own a terrier named Bailey, who sleeps on the top of Mary's desk every day while she writes!  

Biography

Ever since 1992, Mary Pope Osborne has been thrilling kids everywhere with her delightfully exciting Magic Tree House series. The globetrotting escapades of time travelers Jack and Annie are brimming with adventure and magic (not to mention some subtly placed lessons on history and geography). With a life like Osborne's, it's only natural that she would be capable of bringing such wondrous stories to life.

Osborne was brought up in a military family, and her parents' work led to a lifestyle marked by constant change. "By the time I was 15," she says on randomhouse.com, "I had lived in Oklahoma, Austria, Florida, and four different army posts in Virginia and North Carolina." While many kids would probably feel disoriented by such constant change, Osborne wouldn't have had it any other way. "Moving was never traumatic for me, but staying in one place was. When my dad finally retired to a small town in North Carolina, I nearly went crazy with boredom. I craved the adventure and changing scenery of our military life."

And adventure is exactly what Osborne got! After college, she embarked on a series of daring treks across the globe that would surely give Jack and Annie a run for their money. "For a while I camped in a cave on the island of Crete," she said. "Then I joined up with a small band of European young people heading to 'The East.' We traveled through 11 Asian countries and nearly lost our lives, first in an earthquake in northern Afghanistan and then in a riot in Kabul."

Following an illness she contracted in Katmandu, Osborne returned home to the U.S. trying her hand at a vast variety of jobs: window dresser, medical assistant, Russian travel consultant, waitress, bartender, and an assistant editor at a children's magazine. Although Osborne had unconsciously moved closer toward her ultimate career, she says that her first attempts at writing seemed to come without warning. "One day, out of the blue, I began writing a story about an 11-year-old girl in the South," she recalls. "The girl was a lot like me, and many of the incidents in the story were similar to happenings in my childhood...it became a young adult novel called Run, Run Fast as You Can. Finally, I knew what I wanted to be when I grew up."

She sure did! Since then, Osborne has penned a slew of stories, including picture books, chapter books, middle-grade biographies, and young adult novels; but she is indisputably best known for her wonderful Magic Tree House books, a happy hodge-podge of history and mystery with a time travel theme kids find irresistible. No doubt inspired by Osborne's own highly adventurous life, these exiting expeditions have attracted droves of children and pleased educators by combining compulsively readable storytelling with useful facts about geography and history.

As was written of the series in Children's Literature, "Mary Pope Osborne provides nicely paced excitement for young readers, and there's just enough information mixed in so that children will take away some historical fact along with a sense of accomplishment at having completed a chapter book." As much as Osborne has certainly pleased her readers (not to mention their parents and teachers), perhaps no one is quite as pleased as she. "I'm one of those very lucky people who absolutely loves what they do for a living," she explained. "There is no career better suited to my eccentricities, strengths, and passions than that of a children's book author."

Good To Know

A few fascinating outtakes from our interview with Osborne:

"One of the most defining experiences of my life was traveling overland in an old van through the Middle East and Asia in the early 1970's. One day, when a small group of us were camped in a remote part of northern Afghanistan, we saw a woman riding horseback over the sloping plain. Her long brown hair floated on the wind and she wore a bright gypsy-style dress. When she got closer, I realized she was one of my roommates from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill! Though I didn't even know she'd left the U.S.—and she didn't know I was in Afghanistan, we weren't that surprised to come upon each other. That says a lot about the times we were living in then."

"After 26 years of living in New York City, my husband Will and I now spend most of our time in Northwestern Connecticut, living in a house that overlooks a lake. We kayak and hike with our two Norfolk terriers, Joey and Mr. Bezo. Will's learning Italian, and I've been working with a tutor for two years trying to understand Dante's Divine Comedy. One of my biggest hobbies is reading philosophy and theology. We spend lots of time, of course, on our work. After writing three shows for the Morehead Planetarium in North Carolina, Will's writing a musical based on the Magic Tree House series. I'm writing book # 38 in the series. I also spend a lot of time with my sister Natalie Pope Boyce who works on the Magic Tree House Research Guides. Natalie and our nephews and some of our best friends live nearby in the Berkshires Hills of Massachusetts, so we're up there a lot, too. My only complaint is there is not enough time to do all I want to do. For instance, I'd love to take drawing classes and I'd love to paint the lake we're living on. And I'd love to bird watch and become a better cook and learn about classical music. Maybe sometime in the future...."

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    1. Hometown:
      Goshen, Connecticut
    1. Date of Birth:
      May 20, 1949
    2. Place of Birth:
      Fort Sill, Oklahoma
    1. Education:
      B.A., University of North Carolina
    2. Website:

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 17, 2011

    Highly Recommended: A must read!

    "One World, Many Religions: The Way We Worship"
    -Mary Pope Osborne

    Written in an easy to read format, Osborne enlightens the reader on six of the world's religions: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism. She hits on topics such as the history of the religion, the beliefs, and the practices and rituals. Not only does she give a brief summary of each but she goes on to explain how each impacts our world's characteristics. This can be seen through her use of pointing out the way it affects the ways in which we educate our youth and where those beliefs derived from, the music that it has brought to our lives, and the art that we experience throughout the world. No matter how you look at the world, you cannot view it without seeing something that belongs to a certain religion. Look at the architecture, traditions, rituals, songs, and stories that are seen all around, and you can relate them to religions all over. It was so interesting to see this through the color photos that highlight some of these features.

    This book is definitely something that all parents and teacher should share with their children. It is so important in a religiously rich world that children are aware of the other religions that surround them on a daily basis and the beliefs, history, and practices that make our world so colorful. On a 4th to 6th grade level, the photos, maps, timelines, and reference materials help the students to grasp the concepts that help build their understanding and tolerance to different religions.

    snp3301

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  • Posted October 17, 2011

    Awesome Book!

    Religion is something that has been around for thousands of years. A basic understanding of each religion, however, has not. One World, Many Religions is a children's book that describes seven of the world's most practiced religions. Mary Pope Osborne does an excellent job describing the theology and practices of each religion and choosing photographs that represent different worship styles. This book is completely unbiased, and I recommend for it to be in everyone's library.

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