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Often thought of as the Bible of India, "The Bhagavad Gita" is the most important sacred text of Hinduism, and the third most important among world scriptures, after the Bible and the Qur'an. It tells the story of the moral struggles of the warrior Arjuna, who, before the start of a great battle between good and evil, discusses the big questions of life and death with his charioteer who is (unbeknownst to Arjuna) the Hindu god Krishna in disguise. This masterful translation of a classic text includes the following key features: fresh, easy-to-read translation in free verse form; beautiful edition - elegant jacket, interior design, and ribbon marker; short introduction, allowing the reader to jump right into the text; annotations at the foot of the page to explain foreign concepts or terms; extensive concluding essay for deeper understanding of the text; and, glossary of religious terms and Sanskrit words.
This two-volume work describes three collections of Persian manuscripts and lithographic prints at the Royal Library, Copenhagen: 155 manuscripts and lithographs acquired by Arthur Christensen in Iran, 10 manuscripts collected by David Simonsen and 102 manuscripts acquired by the Library. All items have been included in the holdings of the Library after the publication of the previous catalogue in 1857. The Persian manuscripts included in the three collections cover a variety of topics, the major fields being poetry and history. The oldest date from the 9th H/15th CE century and the most recent from the 14th H/20th CE century. Among the items described, there is a substantial number of Qagar-period lithographs, many of them illustrated. A special group of lithographs is formed by four diaries written by the Qagar ruler Naser al-Din ah (ruled 1264 - 1313 H [1848 - 1896 CE]). In the diaries, the Naser al-Din ah describes his travels in Iran, Iraq and Europe. Designed especially as an essential source of reference for scholars working in all aspects of manuscript studies, the catalogue includes over 500 full-page illustrations (some in colour) that help identify each of the manuscripts.
The Lotus Sutra--one of the most popular Buddhist classics--is here
accessibly introduced by one of its most eminent scholars.
The untold story of how the Arabic Qur'an became the English Koran For millions of Muslims, the Qur'an is sacred only in Arabic, the original Arabic in which it was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad in the seventh century; to many Arab and non-Arab believers alike, the book literally defies translation. Yet English translations exist and are growing, in both number and importance. Bruce Lawrence tells the remarkable story of the ongoing struggle to render the Qur'an's lyrical verses into English--and to make English itself an Islamic language. The "Koran" in English revisits the life of Muhammad and the origins of the Qur'an before recounting the first translation of the book into Latin by a non-Muslim: Robert of Ketton's twelfth-century version paved the way for later ones in German and French, but it was not until the eighteenth century that George Sale's influential English version appeared. Lawrence explains how many of these early translations, while part of a Christian agenda to "know the enemy," often revealed grudging respect for their Abrahamic rival. British expansion in the modern era produced an anomaly: fresh English translations--from the original Arabic--not by Arabs or non-Muslims but by South Asian Muslim scholars. The first book to explore the complexities of this translation saga, The "Koran" in English also looks at cyber Korans, versions by feminist translators, and now a graphic Koran, the American Qur'an created by the acclaimed visual artist Sandow Birk.
Brilliantly and concisely summarises the essence of core teachings such as the Jataka Tales, Samyutta-nikaya, Anguttara-nikaya, Diamond Sutra, White Lotus Sutra, Vimalakirt-nirdesa, Lankavatara Sutra, Sutra of Golden Light, Flower-Ornament Sutra, Perfection of Wisdom teachings, the Abhidharma and more. Also addresses the question of what actual constitutes Buddhism's authentic canonical literature. This new edition includes a fresh preface by the author. Realizing that he was a Buddhist at age 16, Sangharakshita eventually spent 20 years in India. Returning to England, he established Friends of the Western Buddhist Order (1967); Western Buddhist Order (1968). Author of nearly 50 books.
A Year with the Sages uniquely relates the Sages' understanding of each Torah portion to everyday life. The importance of these teachings cannot be overstated. The Sages, who lived during the period from the fifth century BCE to the fifth century CE, considered themselves to have inherited the oral teachings God transmitted to Moses, along with the mandate to interpret them to each subsequent generation. Just as the Torah and the entire Hebrew Bible are the foundations of Judaism, the Sages' teachings form the structures of Jewish belief and practice built on that foundation. Many of these teachings revolve around core concepts such as God's justice, God's love, Torah, Israel, humility, honesty, loving-kindness, reverence, prayer, and repentance. You are invited to spend a year with the inspiring ideas of the Sages through their reflections on the fifty-four weekly Torah portions and the eleven Jewish holidays. Quoting from the week's Torah portion, Rabbi Reuven Hammer presents a Torah commentary, selections from the Sages that chronicle their process of interpreting the text, a commentary that elucidates these concepts and their consequences, and a personal reflection that illumines the Sages' enduring wisdom for our era.
The Koren Ani Tefilla Weekday Siddur is an engaging and thought-provoking siddur for the inquiring high school student and thoughtful adult. The innovative commentary in this siddur, for beginners and the seasoned alike, has been designed to help the user create their own meaning and connection during the Tefilla experience. Divided into different categories that enable the user to connect to the liturgy in different ways, the commentary provides a variety of approaches to each tefilla, and something meaningful for everyone.
Key innovative features:
-- Commentary divided into four categories: Biur, Iyun, Halakha and Ani Tefilla
-- Unique layout encourages deeper connection to the prayers
-- Appendices include: FAQs on tefilla collected from students and adults, practical guide to enhancing one's kavana, useful bibliography, guide to the Jewish year, stories, and more.
-- Thought-provoking questions, narratives, and quotes help the user think and feel beyond the standardized liturgy
A book that challenges our most basic assumptions about Judeo-Christian monotheism Contrary to popular belief, Judaism was not always strictly monotheistic. Two Gods in Heaven reveals the long and little-known history of a second, junior god in Judaism, showing how this idea was embraced by rabbis and Jewish mystics in the early centuries of the common era and casting Judaism's relationship with Christianity in an entirely different light. Drawing on an in-depth analysis of ancient sources that have received little attention until now, Peter Schafer demonstrates how the Jews of the pre-Christian Second Temple period had various names for a second heavenly power-such as Son of Man, Son of the Most High, and Firstborn before All Creation. He traces the development of the concept from the Son of Man vision in the biblical book of Daniel to the Qumran literature, the Ethiopic book of Enoch, and the Jewish philosopher Philo of Alexandria. After the destruction of the Second Temple, the picture changes drastically. While the early Christians of the New Testament took up the idea and developed it further, their Jewish contemporaries were divided. Most rejected the second god, but some-particularly the Jews of Babylonia and the writers of early Jewish mysticism-revived the ancient Jewish notion of two gods in heaven. Describing how early Christianity and certain strands of rabbinic Judaism competed for ownership of a second god to the creator, this boldly argued and elegantly written book radically transforms our understanding of Judeo-Christian monotheism.
Resurrection of the dead represents one of the more enigmatic beliefs of Western religions to many modern readers. In this volume, C. D. Elledge offers an interpretation of some of the earliest literature within Judaism that exhibits a confident hope in resurrection. He not only aids the study of early Jewish literature itself, but expands contemporary knowledge of some of the earliest expressions of a hope that would become increasingly meaningful in later Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Elledge focuses on resurrection in the latest writings of the Hebrew Bible, the Apocrypha, Pseudepigrapha, Dead Sea Scrolls, as well as the writings of other Hellenistic Jewish authors. He also incorporates later rabbinic writings, early Christian sources, and inscriptions, as they shed additional light upon select features of the evidence in question. This allows for a deeper look into how particular literary works utilized the discourse of resurrection, while also retaining larger comparative insights into what these materials may teach us about the gradual flourishing of resurrection within its early Jewish environment. Individual chapters balance a more categorical/comparative approach to the problems raised by resurrection (definitions, diverse conceptions, historical origins, strategies of legitimation) with a more specific focus on particular pieces of the early Jewish evidence (1 Enoch, Dead Sea Scrolls, Josephus). Resurrection of the Dead in Early Judaism, 200 BCE-CE 200 provides a treatment of resurrection that informs the study of early Jewish theologies, as well as their later reinterpretations within Rabbinic Judaism and Christianity.
The Long Shorter Way is a major interpretation and exploration of Chasidism, based on a series of lectures delivered by Rabbi Adin Even-Israel Steinsaltz on Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi's classic Chasidic work, the Tanya. Like the Tanya itself, The Long Shorter Way focuses on the profound dilemma of the beinoni, the intermediate person who, neither purely wicked nor purely good, must struggle with evil and temptation throughout his or her life. In each chapter, Rabbi Steinsaltz elucidates the complex nature of man as he strives to attain unity with the Divine One, compelling the reader to deep personal inspection.
The Tibetan Book of the Dead was traditionally used as a mortuary text, read or recited in the presence of a dying or dead person. As a contribution to the science of death and of rebirth, it is unique among the sacred books of the world. The texts have been discovered and rediscovered in the West during the course of almost the entire 20th century, starting with Oxford's edition by W Y Evans-Wentz in 1927. The new edition includes a new foreword, afterword and suggested further reading list by Donald S Lopez Jr to update and contextualize this pioneering work. Lopez examines the historical background of OUP's publication, the translation against current scholarship, and its profound importance in engendering both scholarly and popular interest in Tibetan religion and culture.
This unique Haggada introduces Ethiopian customs into the traditional Haggada as it tells the dramatic story of the Ethiopian Jewish community's journey to Israel in the 1980s and 1990s. Photographs, reproductions of rare documents, and original stories published for the first time bring this contemporary Exodus story to life. Journey to Freedom celebrates Ethiopian Jewish culture, and provides a beautiful opportunity for the Ethiopian community to tell and retell its mportant story.
It is commonly asserted that heresy is a Christian invention that emerged in late antiquity as Christianity distinguished itself from Judaism. Heresy, Forgery, Novelty probes ancient Jewish disputes regarding religious innovation and argues that Christianity's heresiological impulse is in fact indebted to Jewish precedents. In this book, Jonathan Klawans demonstrates that ancient Jewish literature displays a profound unease regarding religious innovation. The historian Josephus condemned religious innovation outright, and later rabbis valorize the antiquity of their traditions. The Dead Sea sectarians spoke occasionally-and perhaps secretly-of a "new covenant," but more frequently masked newer ideas in rhetorics of renewal or recovery. Other ancient Jews engaged in pseudepigraphy-the false attribution of recent works to prophets of old. The flourishing of such religious forgeries further underscores the dangers associated with religious innovation. As Christianity emerged, the discourse surrounding religious novelty shifted dramatically. On the one hand, Christians came to believe that Jesus had inaugurated a "new covenant," replacing what came prior. On the other hand, Christian writers followed their Jewish predecessors in condemning heretics as dangerous innovators, and concealing new works in pseudepigraphic garb. In its open, unabashed embrace of new things, Christianity parts from Judaism. Christianity's heresiological condemnation of novelty, however, displays continuity with prior Jewish traditions. Heresy, Forgery, Novelty reconsiders and offers a new interpretation of the dynamics of the split between Judaism and Christianity.
'Do you want to improve the world? I don't think it can be done. The world is sacred. It can't be improved. If you tamper with it, you'll ruin it. If you treat it like an object, you'll lose it.' Stephen Mitchell's translation of Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching (The Book of the Way) has sold over half a million copies worldwide. In this stunningly beautiful edition of the fundamental modern Taoist philosophy text, Mitchell's words are set against ancient Chinese paintings selected by Asian art expert, Dr Stephen Little.
In an age when physical books matter less and less, here is a thrilling story about a book that meant everything. This true-life detective story unveils the journey of a sacred text - the tenth-century annotated bible known as the Aleppo Codex - from its hiding place in a Syrian synagogue to the newly founded state of Israel. Based on Matti Friedman's independent research, documents kept secret for fifty years, and personal interviews with key players, the book proposes a new theory of what happened when the codex left Aleppo, Syria, in the late 1940s and eventually surfaced in Jerusalem, mysteriously incomplete. The codex provides vital keys to reading biblical texts. By recounting its history, Friedman explores the once vibrant Jewish communities in Islamic lands and follows the thread into the present, uncovering difficult truths about how the manuscript was taken to Israel and how its most important pages went missing. Along the way, he raises critical questions about who owns historical treasures and the role of myth and legend in the creation of a nation.
This book offers a complete translation of the Majjhima Nikaya, or
"Middle Length Discourses of the Buddha," one of the major
collections of texts in the Pali Canon, the authorized scriptures
of Theravada Buddhism. This collection--among the oldest records of
the historical Buddha's original teachings--consists of 152
"suttas" or discourses of middle length, distinguished as such from
the longer and shorter "suttas" of the other collections. The
Majjhima Nikaya might be concisely described as the Buddhist
scripture that combines the richest variety of contextual settings
with the deepest and most comprehensive assortment of teachings.
These teachings, which range from basic ethics to instructions in
meditation and liberating insight, unfold in a fascinating
procession of scenarios that show the Buddha in living dialogue
with people from many different strata of ancient Indian society:
with kings and princes, priests and ascetics, simple villagers and
erudite philosophers. Replete with drama, reasoned argument, and
illuminating parable and simile, these discourses exhibit the
Buddha in the full glory of his resplendent wisdom, majestic
sublimity, and compassionate humanity.
This book presents the Book of Ecclesiastes as a single coherent work, whose ideas are consistent and collectively form a comprehensive worldview. Moreover, in contrast to the prevailing view in the research literature - it presents the Book of Ecclesiastes as a work with an essentially positive outlook: Kohelet's fault-finding is aimed not at the world itself, or how it functions, but at the people who persist in missing out on the present, on what it has to offer, and of the ability to enjoy all that exists and is available. Contrasting with these are Koheleth's positive perscriptions to make the most of the present. To my mind, his remonstrations are meant to "clear the way" for his positive recommendations - to clear the path, as it were, of the obstacles to accepting reality. These two aspects, the negative and the positive, come together in this investigation into Koheleth's belief, which is founded on an acceptance of all that God has created.
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