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Asian Religions: A Cultural Perspective / Edition 1

Asian Religions: A Cultural Perspective / Edition 1

by Randall L. NadeauRandall L. Nadeau
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This lively introduction offers a complete overview of the main Asian religions, their traditions and contemporary relevance, and how they are lived and practiced today.

  • Provides readers with an all-embracing introduction to Asian religions, covering each of the main traditions in a style that is lively and distinctive
  • Focuses on Asian religions as lived and practiced by real people, leading readers to a deeper understanding of Asian spiritualities and traditions, and their contemporary relevance
  • Uses exercises, activities, and an appealing mixture of examples, such as novels, throughout the book, to both inform and engage readers
  • Employs a comparative approach, highlighting the contrasts between Asian and Western modes of thinking and living
  • Debates the influence of religion on real-world issues including work, economic growth, the environment, human rights, and gender relations
  • Written by an acclaimed scholar in this field, who is able to draw on his remarkable knowledge across all relevant religious traditions

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781118471968
Publisher: Wiley
Publication date: 01/28/2014
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 278
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 8.80(h) x 0.60(d)

About the Author

Randall L. Nadeau is Professor of Religion and Department Chair at Trinity University. He has served on the board of the Society for the Study of Chinese Religion, and as chair of the Chinese Religions Group of the American Academy of Religion. He is the editor of The Blackwell Companion to Chinese Religions (2012), and author of Confucianism and Taoism, a volume in the 6 volume reference work Introduction to The World’s Major Religions (2009).

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Table of Contents

List of Figures vii

Preface ix

Part I Introductory Material 1

1 Religion 3

2 Language 11

Part II The Confucian Tradition 19

3 Defining “Religion”: The Confucian Response 21

4 The Religious Dimensions of Confucianism 28

5 The Self as a Center of Relationships 36

6 Learning to Be Human 44

7 The Lasting Influence of Confucianism in Modern East Asia 51

Part III The Taoist Tradition 59

8 What Is Taoism? 61

9 Philosophical Taoism 68

10 Temporal Dimensions of Yin–Yang Cosmology 76

11 Spatial Dimensions of Yin–Yang Cosmology 82

12 Personal Dimensions of Yin–Yang Cosmology 90

13 Taoism as a Global Religious Phenomenon 96

Part IV The Hindu Tradition 103

14 What Is Hinduism? 105

15 Karma-marga 111

16 Jñâna-marga 117

17 Bhakti-marga 123

18 Hinduism in the Modern World 133

Part V The Theravâda Buddhist Tradition 139

19 Buddhism and the Buddha 141

20 Suffering and Its Causes 149

21 Buddhist Ethics 156

22 The Fruits of Meditation 164

23 Monastic Practice 171

Part VI The Mahâyâna Buddhist Tradition 179

24 Faith 181

25 Principles of Zen Buddhism 189

26 Buddhism as a Global Religion 199

Part VII Japanese Religions 207

27 Japanese Religion and Culture 209

28 Shrine Shintô: Dimensions of Sacred Time and Space in Japan 218

29 Dimensions of Religion in Modern Japan 227

Part VIII Conclusions 237

30 “Religion” and the Religions 239

Appendix: Suggestions for Further Reading 246

Glossary 255

Index 260

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

“A unique introduction to Asian religions, combining the scholarly rigor of an established historian of Asian religions with the willingness to engage empathetically with the traditions and to suggest that readers do the same.”
Joseph A. Adler, Kenyon College

“Randall L. Nadeau has accomplished what only a few have tried, but which has been much needed in the study of religions.  He has written a genuinely novel approach to the religions of Asia. . . This is a work that should find its way into Asian humanities, history, religion, and civilization courses.”
Ronnie Littlejohn, Belmont University

"Comprehensive, historical, and comparative, with a clear and thoughtful focus on East Asia. The author's central interest is China, but he adds Theravada Buddhism and Japan's religions to complete the total picture. A good book for undergraduate students of Asian religions."
Jim Kodera, Wellesley College

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