By Trevor Ling
The non secular traditions of Asia and Europe, the 'East' and 'West' of the name, are often considered as being in sharp distinction with one another, the single 'mystical', the opposite 'prophetic'. each time their religions should not so contrasted they're often handled in isolation from one another: the faith of Israel, Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism, Jainism and Buddhism. Dr Ling, in spite of the fact that, stresses that there's enormous overlap and interpenetration among the 2 forms and parts, and that it is very important see the ancient inter-relation among those religions and to monitor how, in the course of given sessions of background, there are parallel advancements or major divergences. He covers the interval 1500 B.C. to the current time, delivering an overview of the improvement of Asian and eu spiritual traditions and associations, and discussing the social and fiscal components enthusiastic about the advance of religous traditions, even supposing he indicates that such elements on my own don't account for the spiritual lifetime of guy. Dr Ling is going directly to interpret the modern importance of those religions and their strength for the longer term lifetime of humanity. He means that the current level of spiritual improve is characterized by way of open-endedness in the direction of the long run; no longer all religions convey this personality, yet none has but exhausted the probabilities of improvement. This booklet is meant to be used an an advent to the learn of faith. even though reference is made within the textual content to resources of additional details, the publication can be utilized regardless of them.
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Additional resources for A History of Religion East and West: An Introduction and Interpretation
Neverthe- The significance ofIsrael 13 less, from the religious life of a small confederation of tribes have developed, historically, the major religions of the Western world: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam; the religious ideas of the Old Testament have, for better or worse, heavily influenced the religious thought of Europe and America. The three major systems just mentioned together constitute most of the Western stream of religious tradition, and are sometimes grouped in contrast to the other religions of the world, especially those oflndia, namely Hinduism, Buddhism,Jainism, and Sikhism.
It is in its relation to human beings, however, that the significance of this notion comes out most clearly, and provides one of the major factors in the development oflndian religious ideas.
For sheer contemporaneousness with the events described one of the best claimants is an ancient song embedded in Judg. 5, the Song of Deborah. Another claimant to great antiquity is the very ancient creedal confession now found in the book of Deuteronomy (26: 5-9), the words of which are important enough to be quoted in full here: The earliest outline ofIsrael's history 17 A wandering Aramean was my father [the speaker is any Israelite, in the period after the settlement in Canaan], and he went down into Egypt, and sojourned there, few in number; and he became there a nation, great, mighty and populous: And the Egyptians evil entreated us, and affiicted us, and laid upon us hard bondage: And we cried unto the LoRD, the God of our fathers, and the LORD heard our voice, and saw our affiiction, and out toil, and out oppression: And the LORD brought us forth out of Egypt with a mighty hand, and with an outstretched arm, and with great terribleness, and with signs and with wonders: And he has brought us unto this place, and he has given us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey.
A History of Religion East and West: An Introduction and Interpretation by Trevor Ling