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Religion in India A Historical Introduction

ISBN-10: 0415940249
ISBN-13: 9780415940245
Edition: 2006
Authors: Fred W. Clothey
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Description: This is an accessible and comprehensive overview of the religious history of India from prehistory and Indo-European migration through to the modern period. The author examines the rituals, local mythology, and historical contexts of religion as it  More...

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Book details

Copyright year: 2006
Publisher: Routledge
Publication date: 2/27/2007
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 296
Size: 6.00" wide x 8.75" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 1.210
Language: English

This is an accessible and comprehensive overview of the religious history of India from prehistory and Indo-European migration through to the modern period. The author examines the rituals, local mythology, and historical contexts of religion as it has been and is currently lived on the subcontinent.

Preface
List of illustrations and maps
On Wearing Good Lenses
Lenses used through the years
Pejorative putdown
Romanticism
"Noble savage"
Interpretation by imposition
"Benign neglect"
On understanding the "nature" of religion
Recommended reading
Sources of Indian Religion
Hunting communities
Agricultural communities
The "Indo-European" influence
The Vedic period
The ritual system
Hymns and commentaries
Recommended reading
The Early Urban Period
The Upanisads
The "heterodoxies"
Jainism
Early Buddhism
Recommended reading
Timeline of Chapters 2 and 3
The Urban Period
The context
Kingship and artha
Theism: Buddhist and vaidika
Devotionalism
Articulation of an "urban" ethic
The household
The role of women
Jati or caste
The symbolism of food
Yoga
Summary
The epics
Aesthetics and the arts
Religious life at the popular level
Developments in Buddhism
Kingship
Ethics
Attitude toward city-state
Pantheon
Iconography
Sacred spaces
Recommended reading
Timeline of Chapter 4
The Post-classical Period
South India
Bhakti
The emergence of temples
The Colas
Deities as reflections of cultural history
Philosophical developments
Saiva Siddhanta
Vedanta
North India
Temple construction
Tantrism
The rise of the goddesses to "high deity" status
Buddhism and Jainism
Recommended reading
Timeline of Chapter 5
The Coming of Islam
The origins of Islam
Sunnis and Shi'is
Islam in India
The political context
Diversity of Islam in India
Sunnis
Shi'is
Sufism
Recommended reading
Developments in the Late Medieval Period
Orthopraxy
Hindu polities
Devotionalism
Marathi
Bengali
Hindi
Accommodation and appropriation
Conversion
Syncretism
Sikhism
Recommended reading
Timeline of Chapters 6 and 7
Streams from the "West" and their Aftermath
Religious minorities
Jewish communities
"Cochin Jews"
Bene Israel
Syrian Christians
Zoroastrians or Parsis
The "colonial impact"
The Portuguese, British and other Europeans
The Indian response
Stage one
Stage two
Neo-bhakti
Muslim responses to coloniality
Inter-religious relations: conciliation and confrontation
Pre-independence India
Recommended reading
Religion in Contemporary India
The context
The practice of religion
Pilgrimages and festivals
Varanasi
Palani, Tamil Nadu
Festivals
Makara Vilakku, Sabaramala, Kerala
Bonalu, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh
Festivals in other religious communities
The shrine or temple as the focus of religious expression
Ritual in other religious communities
Religious innovation, hybridization, and reinterpretation
The changing faces of deities
Conversions of another kind
Gurus and their movements
The Brahmakumaris
The Satya Sai Baba movement
The resurgent right
Recommended reading
India's Global Reach
Greater India in Asia
The westward impetus
Early contacts
The colonial period
The modern era
The emigration of South Asians
Recommended reading
Glossary
Notes
Index

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