WORLD RELIGIONS READER: SELECTED TEXTS & SYMBOLS

TABLE OF CONTENTS

 

About the Editors

A Word to Readers of the Reader

“Western” and “Eastern” Religions

Introduction


ANCIENT

1.1 The Mesopotamian Solar Disc

1.2 The Spade

1.3 The DINGIR

1.4 The Seven Dots

1.5 The Ankh and the Djed

1.6 Enuma Elish: The Babylonian Creation Story

1.7 The Descent of Isthar into the Underworld

1.8 The Egyptian Book of the Dead

1.9 The Iliad of Homer

1.10 The Theogony of Hesiod


WESTERN RELIGIONS

Introduction to Western Religions


JUDAISM

2.1 Menorah

2.2 Magen David

2.3 The Tetragrammaton

2.4 Kosher Symbols

2.5 God Chooses Abram / Abraham

2.6 The Descendants of Abraham

2.7 The Ten Commandments / Decalogue

2.8 The Laws of Kashrut

2.9 Psalm 2

2.10 The Shema

2.11 Sayings of the Fathers on the Torah (Mishnah)

2.12 The Birth of Abraham

2.13 Mysticism: Sefer Yezurah

2.14 Keeping the Commandments

2.15 Pittsburg Declaration

2.16 “Balfour Declaration”

2.17 Columbus Platform


CHRISTIANITY

3.1 Cross Symbols

3.2 The Fish Symbol

3.3 Symbols of the Trinity

3.4 Abraham, the Father of Christians

3.5 The Parable of the Prodigal Son

3.6 The Lord’s Prayer (Our Father)

3.7 Woman: You Are the Devil’s Gateway

3.8 “Edict of Milan”

3.9 Christian Creeds

3.10 The Rule of Benedict

3.11 Use of Icons and Images

3.12 Aquinas’s Five Ways

3.13 The Ninety-Five Theses

3.14 An Anabaptist Martyr

3.15 Explaining a Miracle Story

3.16 The End of the World

3.17 Science and Christian Faith

3.18 Roman Catholic Relations with Other Religions


ISLAM

4.1 Muslim Calligraphy

4.2 The Crescent

4.3 Al-Fatiha (The Opening)

4.4 Ibrahim (Abraham) in the Quran

4.5 Jews, Christians and Muslims

4.6 Ibrahim (Abraham) and Ismail (Ishmael)

4.7 Prayer in the Direction of Mecca (Quran)

4.8 Selections from Hadith

4.9 Sin and Repentance

4.10 The Uncovering of the First Veil

4.11 Satan’s Apology

4.12 The Final Goal of Sufism

4.13 Reconstruction of Religious Thought


EASTERN RELIGIONS

Introduction to Eastern Religions


HINDUISM

5.1 The AUM/OM Symbol and Sound

5.2 Avataras of Vishnu

5.3 Hymn to Agni

5.4 The Creation (Nasadiya) Hymn

5.5 Isha Upanishad

5.6 The Bhagavad-Gita

5.7 The Laws of Manu

5.8 The Yoga Sutra of Patanjali

5.9 The Goddess Destroys the Buffalo Demon

5.10 The Enlightened Self

5.11 Sayings of Ramakrishna

5.12 On Ahimsa


BUDDHISM

6.1 Dharmachakra Symbol

6.2 Buddhist Mudras

6.3 Parable of the Poisoned Arrow

6.4 The Admission of Women into the Sangha

6.5 The Four Defeats (Parajika Rules)

6.6 The Dhammapada

6.7 The Lotus Sutra

6.8 The Heart Sutra

6.9 Parable of the Mustard Seeds

6.10 Smokey the Bear Sutra


JAINISM

7.1 Jain Figures

7.2 The Jain Symbol

7.3 Final Liberation

7.4 Straining Water Before Use

7.5 Namaskara Mantra

7.6 Moral Vows of Jains

7.7 Philosophy and Ethics of the Jains


SIKHISM

8.1 The Khanda Symbol

8.2 The Ik Onkar Symbol

8.3 Selections from Namdev

8.4 Selections from Kabir

8.5 Selections from Guru Nanak


CHINESE RELIGIONS

Ancient Heritage

9.1 Bagua (Pa Kua) Symbol

9.2a The Yijing (I-Ching) Symbol

9.2b The Tai Hexagram Symbol

Confucianism

9.3 The Ren [Jen] Symbol

9.4 The Four Books

9.4a The Analects of Confucius

9.4b The Great Learning

9.4c The Doctrine of the Mean

9.4d The Mencius

Daoism

9.5 The Yin-Yang Symbol

9.6 Daodejing (Tao Te Ching)

9.7 Zhuangzi / Chuang Tzu

9.8 Daoist Origins of Taijiquan (T’ai-chi ch’üan)

Chinese Buddhism

9.9 Bodhidharma Symbol

9.10 Platform Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch


JAPANESE RELIGIONS

Shinto

10.1 The Torii Symbol

10.2 The Creation of Japan and the Kami

10.3 Precious Comb-box

10.4 Shintoism: the Way of the Kami

Japanese Buddhism

10.5 The Enso Symbol

10.6 Tannisho

10.7 Atsumori

10.8 What Is Buddhism?


GLOSSARY


SOURCES