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Promise of Salvation A Theory of Religion

ISBN-10: 022600693X

ISBN-13: 9780226006932

Edition: 2012

Authors: Martin Riesebrodt, Steven Rendall

List price: $28.00
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Description:

Why has religion persisted across the course of human history? Secularists have predicted the end of faith for a long time, but religions continue to attract followers. Meanwhile, scholars of religion have expanded their field to such an extent that we lack a basic framework for making sense of the chaos of religious phenomena. To remedy this state of affairs, Martin Riesebrodt here undertakes a task that is at once simple and monumental: to define, understand, and explain religion as a universal concept. Instead of propounding abstract theories, Riesebrodt concentrates on the concrete realities of worship, examining religious holidays, conversion stories, prophetic visions, and life-cycle events. In analyzing these practices, his scope is appropriately broad, taking into consideration traditions in Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, Daoism, and Shinto. Ultimately, Riesebrodt argues, all religions promise to avert misfortune, help their followers manage crises, and bring both temporary blessings and eternal salvation. And, asThe Promise of Salvationmakes clear through abundant empirical evidence, religion will not disappear as long as these promises continue to help people cope with life.
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Book details

List price: $28.00
Copyright year: 2012
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
Publication date: 10/26/2012
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 248
Size: 5.75" wide x 9.25" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 0.748
Language: English

Preface
Religion as Discourse: On the Critique of the Concept of Religion
Modern Religious Discourses
The Indispensability of the Concept of Religion
On Discourse-Theory Criticism
On Postcolonial Criticism
On the Necessity of Analytical Concepts
From Language to Social Reference
Religion as Social Reference: On Justifying the Concept of Religion
Demarcation
Superposition
Assimilation
The Politics of Religion
Travelers' Reports
Conclusions
Scholarly Imaginations of Religion
Religion as a Divine Gift of Reason
Religion as an Experience of Revelation
Religion as Projection
Religion as Protoscience
Religion as Affect
Religion as a Function of the Brain
Religion as Sacralized Society
Religion as an Interest in Salvation
Religion as a Commodity
Outlook
Religious Practice and the Promise of Salvation
Outline of a Theory of Religion
Defining Religion
Understanding Religion
Explaining Religion
Averting Misfortune: General Religious Practices
eligious Calendars
ife-Cycle Practices
ariable Practices
The Radical Quest for Salvation: The Practices of Religious Virtuosos
On the Concept of Virtuosity
Shamans
Christians
Jews
Muslims
Buddhists
Japanese Virtuosos
Daoists
On the Logic of Virtuoso Practices
Turning toward Salvation: Religious Propaganda
Conversion and Propaganda
Conversion Narratives
Reports of Enlightenment
Prophetic Promises
The Future of Religion
On the Universality of Religion
Secularization, Disenchantment, and Deinstitutionalization
The Return and the Future of Religion
Notes
Bibliography
Index