Here is a unique study of all the world's great religions: Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Islam, Judaism and Christianity. This book is neither a history or a critique. Instead it explains, simply and sympathetically, the basic tenants of each religion and the reasons why it attracts millions of devout followers. As the author explains in the first chapter, “This is a book about religion that exists . . . . not as a dull habit but as an acute fever. It is about religion alive. And whenever religion comes to life it displays a startling quality; it takes over. All else, while not silenced, becomes subdued and thrown without contest into a supporting role. The Religions of Man is a thoroughly researched, informative, fascinating presentation of both the differences and the similarities in the major religious traditions. It is essential reading for anyone who would understand peoples of other lands, other cultures, other religions.
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Huston Cummings Smith born on May 31, 1919 in China where his parents were Methodist Religious Missionaries. He spent the first 17 years of his life in China. Upon reaching the United States to continue his eduction at Central Methodist College, he soon drifted away and took up other religions. He even experimented with drugs, meeting Timothy Leary in the process. I first met him in Berkeley while I was a student at the University of California at Berkeley. Ofter the course of many years, Huston Smith traveled widely especially to India and tried just about every major religion and most of the minor ones, including even drug based religions of the American Indians based on peyote. Most of his early life was spent in the various branches of Hinduism, studying under different swamis. All this made him an expert in just about every religion. A TV station that evolved into the Public Broadcasting System asked him to give a television series on the world's religions. His director reminded him repeatedly to keep his lectures exciting and attention grabbing. “This is not a classroom where you have a captive audience”, he said. “If you lose their attention for thirty seconds they will switch channels and you won't get them back. So, make your points if you must – you're a professor so you have to make your points. But illustrate them immediately, with an example, something that will connect them to things your audience can relate to.” Huston Smith believed that this is the key to this book's success. There are other, perhaps technically better, books out there, but none have enjoyed the wide spread popularity of this book.
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Book Description Joanna Cotler Books, 1965. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0060361204