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Jessie Ball duPont Library

Religious Studies 164: Studying Asian Religions (in the West)

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Searching for books and other resources

Use the library catalog to identify and locate books, video, audio and other material in our library. It is often best to begin with a detailed keyword search. Once you have identified an item that is within the scope of your research, use the subject headings found in the record describing it to locate similar materials. Also, when you retrieve a book from the shelf, you may wish to peruse the books shelved near it as they are likely to be on the same, or a related, subject.

Use WorldCat to identify materials held by other libraries around the world. Most of these you will need to request via interlibrary loan should you wish to use them. Sewanee ILL, our interlibrary loan system, is linked below. Please feel free to use the interlirbary loan service, but be sure you have planned for the time it will take for books to be shipped here. Articles are usually delivered electronically and, therefore, much quicker.

Google Book Search offers certain advantages such as the ability to search the full-text of works as well as the ability to view the text of works that are no longer restricted by copyright. If you find something in Google Books that appears to be useful for your research, but you cannot view the book, be sure to check to see if the book is in our library. If not, you can place an interlibrary loan request.

Recently published books on Buddhism in the duPont Library

Conceiving the Indian Buddhist Patriarchs in China

This exceptionally successful survey text introduces the teachings and practice of Islam from its earliest origins up to its contemporary resurgence. Islam: The Straight Path traces the development of the religion and its impact on world history and politics, providing keen insight into one ofthe world's least understood religions.

Buddhists

Buddhists: Understanding Buddhism through the Lives of Practitioners provides a series of case studies of Asian and modern Western Buddhists, spanning history, gender, and class, whose lives are representative of the ways in which Buddhists throughout time have embodied the tradition. Portrays the foundational principles of Buddhist belief through the lives of believers, illustrating how the religion is put into practice in everyday life Takes as its foundation the inherent diversity within Buddhist society, rather than focusing on the spiritual and philosophical elite within Buddhism Reveals how individuals have negotiated the choices, tensions, and rewards of living in a Buddhist society Features carefully chosen case studies which cover a range of Asian and modern Western Buddhists Explores a broad range of possible Buddhist orientations in contemporary and historical contexts

The Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism

With more than 5,000 entries totaling over a million words, this is the most comprehensive and authoritative dictionary of Buddhism ever produced in English. It is also the first to cover terms from all of the canonical Buddhist languages and traditions: Sanskrit, Pali, Tibetan, Chinese, Japanese, and Korean. Unlike reference works that focus on a single Buddhist language or school, The Princeton Dictionary of Buddhism bridges the major Buddhist traditions to provide encyclopedic coverage of the most important terms, concepts, texts, authors, deities, schools, monasteries, and geographical sites from across the history of Buddhism. 

Sword of Zen: Master Takuan and his writings on immovable wisdom and the sword Taie

Takuan S ho's (1573-1645) two works on Zen and swordsmanship are among the most straightforward and lively presentations of Zen ever written. Although dealing ostensibly with the art of the sword, Record of Immovable Wisdom and On the Sword Taie are basic guides to Zen-"user's manuals" for Zen mind that show one how to manifest it not only in sword play but from moment to moment in everyday life. Scholars will welcome this new, annotated translation of Takuan's sword-related works as well as the host of detail it provides, illuminating an obscure period in Zen's history in Japan."

The Buddha and Religious Diversity

Providing a rigorous analysis of Buddhist ways of understanding religious diversity, this book develops a new foundation for cross-cultural understanding of religious diversity in our time. Examining the complexity and uniqueness of Buddha's approach to religious pluralism using four main categories - namely exclusivism, inclusivism, pluralistic-inclusivism and pluralism - the book proposes a cross-cultural and interreligious interpretation of each category, thus avoiding the accusation of intellectual colonialism. The key argument is that, unlike the Buddha, most Buddhist traditions today, including Theravda Buddhism and even the Dalai Lama, consider liberation and the highest stages of spiritual development exclusive to Buddhism. The book suggests that the Buddha rejects many doctrines and practices found in other traditions, and that, for him, there are nonnegotiable ethical and doctrinal standards that correspond to the Dharma. This argument is controversial and likely to ignite a debate among Buddhists from different traditions, especially between conservative and progressive Buddhists. The book fruitfully contributes to the literature on inter-religious dialogue, and is of use to students and scholars of Asian Studies, World Religion and Eastern Philosophy.

Recent Books on Hinduism in duPont Library

The Hindu Traditions

Renowned lecturer from The Teaching Company, Mark W. Muesse brings readers into an encounter with the world's oldest living religious tradition, known as Hinduism. Muesse's brief survey, challenges the perception of Hinduism as one religious tradition, showing how wonderfully rich and diverse this 5,000-year old story truly is. He traces the vast history and practices of classic and diverse traditions, moving from the origins in the Indus Valley up through classic and contemporary periods. Muesse exhibits a keen sense of the myriad spiritualities associated with Hinduism, demonstrating how the religious tradition is both monotheistic and polytheistic.

Hinduism in Practice - Rodrigues

Drawing on personal experiences of Hinduism on the ground, this book provides a reflective context within which religious practices can be understood and appreciated. It conveys the rich realities of the Hindu tradition and the academic approaches through which they are studied. The chapters cover a wide range of topics, including dance, music, performance, festival traditions, temples, myth, philosophy, women’s practices, and divine possession. The engaging narratives are accompanied by contextual discussions and advice on such topics as conducting fieldwork, colonialism, Hindu seasonal celebrations, understanding deities, and aesthetics in Hinduism. All the entries are accompanied by photographs and suggestions for further reading.