• Personal & social issues
      July 2014

      The Cleansing

      by Michael Connor

      The Cleansing: Razor-Sharp Psychological Drama Novel Raises Awareness for Abhorrent African Ritual of ‘Widow Cleansing’. Crafted by Michael Connor, ‘The Cleansing’ takes readers back to the turn of the 21st century, as one young African woman struggles to weigh up life and her culture’s constant conflict between old and new. In a world that is rapidly progressing and modernising, her stagnant culture refuses to end the ritual of ‘widow cleansing’; or forced rape of those who have recently lost their husband.

    • Children's & young adult fiction & true stories
      November 2014

      The Egyptian Princess

      by Jane Waller

      Peter Philips, the time-traveller from 'Saving the Dinosaurs' (also by Jane Waller), now thirteen, is sent back 5,000 years to Ancient Egypt at the time of the Fourth Dynasty. There he finds a world where the wheel has not yet been invented, where the prayers of the Pharaoh alone guarantee that the Nile will provide sufficient water for the crops, and where Ra-Atum, the Sun God, has to travel by boat throughout the Underworld each night in order to rise next morning. Shortly after his arrival he is befriended by the Pharaoh's daughter, Princess Mer-tio-tess, who believes he is a spirit sent to help her. While increasingly attracted towards the Princess he finds himself drawn into a web of power struggle and rivalry. And things get worse when Peter, by accident, brings her back to present-day London, a cold place filled with sad-looking people which, she believes, must be the Underworld.

    • Celtic religion & mythology
      November 2015

      Understanding Celtic Religion

      Revisiting the Pagan Past

      by Katja Ritari & Alexandra Bergholm eds.

      Although it has long been acknowledged that the early Irish literary corpus preserves both pre-Christian and Christian elements, the challenges involved in the understanding of these different strata have not been subjected to critical examination. This volume draws attention to the importance of reconsidering the relationship between religion and mythology, as well as the concept of ‘Celtic religion’ itself. When scholars are attempting to construct the so-called ‘Celtic’ belief system, what counts as ‘religion’? Or, when labelling something as ‘religion’ as opposed to ‘mythology’, what do these entities entail? This volume is the first interdisciplinary collection of articles which critically reevaluates the methodological challenges of the study of ‘Celtic religion’; the authors are eminent scholars in the field of Celtic Studies representing the disciplines of theology, literary studies, history, law and archaeology, and the book represents a significant contribution to the present scholarly debate concerning the pre-Christian elements in early medieval source materials.

    • Celtic religion & mythology

      Understanding Celtic Religion

      Revisiting the Pagan Past

      by Katja Ritari (Editor), Alexandra Bergholm (Editor)

      Although it has long been acknowledged that the early Irish literary corpus preserves both pre-Christian and Christian elements, the challenges involved in the understanding of these different strata have not been subjected to critical examination. This volume draws attention to the importance of reconsidering the relationship between religion and mythology, as well as the concept of ‘Celtic religion’ itself. When scholars are attempting to construct the so-called ‘Celtic’ belief system, what counts as ‘religion’? Or, when labelling something as ‘religion’ as opposed to ‘mythology’, what do these entities entail? This volume is the first interdisciplinary collection of articles which critically reevaluates the methodological challenges of the study of ‘Celtic religion’; the authors are eminent scholars in the field of Celtic Studies representing the disciplines of theology, literary studies, history, law and archaeology, and the book represents a significant contribution to the present scholarly debate concerning the pre-Christian elements in early medieval source materials.

    • Celtic religion & mythology

      Understanding Celtic Religion

      Revisiting the Pagan Past

      by Katja Ritari (Editor), Alexandra Bergholm (Editor)

      Although it has long been acknowledged that the early Irish literary corpus preserves both pre-Christian and Christian elements, the challenges involved in the understanding of these different strata have not been subjected to critical examination. This volume draws attention to the importance of reconsidering the relationship between religion and mythology, as well as the concept of ‘Celtic religion’ itself. When scholars are attempting to construct the so-called ‘Celtic’ belief system, what counts as ‘religion’? Or, when labelling something as ‘religion’ as opposed to ‘mythology’, what do these entities entail? This volume is the first interdisciplinary collection of articles which critically reevaluates the methodological challenges of the study of ‘Celtic religion’; the authors are eminent scholars in the field of Celtic Studies representing the disciplines of theology, literary studies, history, law and archaeology, and the book represents a significant contribution to the present scholarly debate concerning the pre-Christian elements in early medieval source materials.

    • Celtic religion & mythology

      Understanding Celtic Religion

      Revisiting the Pagan Past

      by Katja Ritari (Editor), Alexandra Bergholm (Editor)

      Although it has long been acknowledged that the early Irish literary corpus preserves both pre-Christian and Christian elements, the challenges involved in the understanding of these different strata have not been subjected to critical examination. This volume draws attention to the importance of reconsidering the relationship between religion and mythology, as well as the concept of ‘Celtic religion’ itself. When scholars are attempting to construct the so-called ‘Celtic’ belief system, what counts as ‘religion’? Or, when labelling something as ‘religion’ as opposed to ‘mythology’, what do these entities entail? This volume is the first interdisciplinary collection of articles which critically reevaluates the methodological challenges of the study of ‘Celtic religion’; the authors are eminent scholars in the field of Celtic Studies representing the disciplines of theology, literary studies, history, law and archaeology, and the book represents a significant contribution to the present scholarly debate concerning the pre-Christian elements in early medieval source materials.

    • Judaism
      February 2014

      Christianity with the Torah and the Gospel

      Contributions towards the re-structuring of Christian theology in the light of Israel

      by Klaus Wengst

      The link to Judaism is part of the Christian identity. This has consequences in regards to the formulation of Christian theology. The own history – as a German and as a Christian – has to be accepted, traditions are to be checked and updated in such a way, that they serve life – not lastly for “the lives of the others.” This is what has been attempted through the interpretation of New Testament texts on central theologian topics. Here, the rigid dogmatic formulas of biblical statements and their Jewish context are being realised. The insights gained through the bible place Christians side by side with Jews whilst respecting remaining differences as part of a solidary partnership.

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      March 2018

      Celtic Myth in the 21st Century

      The Gods and their Stories in a Global Perspective

      by Emily Lyle

      This book explores the exciting world of Celtic mythology and demonstrates how it can be related to its prehistoric Indo-European roots.

    • Humanities & Social Sciences
      June 2017

      Christian Martyrdom in Late Antiquity (300-450 AD)

      History and Discourse, Tradition and Religious Identity

      by Peter Gemeinhardt, Johan Leemans

      The present volume’s focus lies on the formation of a multifaccetted discourse on Christian martyrdom in Late Antiquity. While martyrdom accounts remain a central means of defining Christian identity, new literary genres emerge, e.g., the Lives of Saints (Athanasius on Antony), sermons (the Cappadocians), hynms (Prudentius) and more. Authors like Eusebius of Caesarea and Augustine employ martyrological language and motifs in their apologetical and polemic writings, while the Gesta Martyrum Romanorum represent a new type of veneration of the martyrs of a single site. Beyond the borders of the Roman Empire, new martyrs’ narratives can be found. Additionally, two essays deal with methodological questions of research of such sources, thereby highlighting the hitherto understudied innovations of martyrology in Late Antiquity, that is, after the end of the persecutions of Christianity by Roman Emperors. Since then, martyrology gained new importance for the formation of Christian identity within the context of a Christianized imperium. The volume thus enlarges and specifies our knowledge of this fundamental Christian discourse.

    • History of the Americas

      They Sang for Horses

      The Impact of the Horse on Navajo and Apache Folklore

      by LaVerne Harrell Clark

      First published in 1966 and now considered a classic, THEY SANG FOR HORSES remains the only comprehensive treatment of the profound mystical influence that the horse has exerted for more than three hundred years. In this completely redesigned and expanded edition, LaVerne Harrell Clark examines how storytellers, singers, medicine men, and painters created the animal's evolving symbolic significance by adapting existing folklore and cultural symbols. Exploring the horse's importance in ceremonies, songs, prayers, customs, and beliefs, she investigates the period of the horse's most pronounced cultural impact on the Navajo and the Apache, starting from the time of its acquisition from the Spanish in the seventeenth century and continuing to the mid-1960s, when the pickup truck began to replace it as the favoured means of transportation. In addition, she presents a look at how Navajos and Apaches today continue to redefine the horse's important role in their spiritual as well as material lives.

    • Literature: history & criticism

      Interpreting the Legacy

      John Neihardt and Black Elk Speaks

      by Brian Holloway

      Neihardt's work has recently been critiqued by scholars who maintain that the author filtered and corrupted Black Elk's teachings through a European spiritual and political lens. In this book, Brian Holloway offers a rather different view, making a convincing case that Neihardt quite consciously attempted to use his literary craftsmanship to provide the reader with direct and immediate access to the teachings of the Oglala elder. Using Neihardt's original hand written notes and early manuscript drafts, Holloway demonstrates the poet's careful and deliberate re-creation of Black Elk's spiritual world in order to induce a transcendent experience in the reader. Through exhaustive research into Neihardt's biographical materials, published philosophical and metaphysical writings, and volumes of taped lectures, Holloway examines the sources of the book's production as well as the reactions to and the implications of his literary portrayal of the spiritual world of the Oglala.

    • Taoism
      February 2012

      Convergence With Nature

      A Daoist Perspective

      by David E. Cooper

      In this book David E. Cooper explores our relationship to nature – to animals, to plants, to natural places – and asks how it can be shaped into an appropriate one which contributes to the good of people’s lives as a whole. Religions and philosophies have much to say about our relationship with nature, and Chinese Daoist philosophy has long been regarded as among those most sympathetic to the natural world. Daoists seek an attunement to the Dao (the Way) which is characterized by a sense of flow (water being a favourite metaphor), spontaneity, non-interference, humility and patience – virtues which contrast with the aggressive and exploitative values which characterize a modern world increasingly subject to economic imperatives. Like the best of contemporary nature writing, the classic Daoist texts reveal a yearning for convergence with nature, nostalgia for a lost intimacy with the natural world, disillusion with humanity or its products, and a feeling for nature’s mystery. The author explains how these attitudes are rooted in Daoist philosophy and explores their implications for our practical engagement with natural environments. He discusses, too, a number of ethical issues – including hunting, intensive farming, and environmental activism – that reflective people need to address in their efforts to heal our relationship with the Earth.

    • Tribal religions

      Cannibalism is an Acquired Taste

      And Other Notes From Conversations With Anthropologist Omer C. Stewart

      by Carol L Howell

      Omer Stewart is most noted for his career-long study of the Peyote religion. His mentor, A L Kroeber, instilled in him an abiding respect for cultural variation. Applying this fundamental principle to his work in the 1930s, Omer was surprised to find himself at odds with many notable colleagues. With characteristic self-confidence, he was undeterred in his effort to document the religion, defend its practice, and push open the door to applied anthropology. In CANNIBALISM IS AN ACQUIRED TASTE, Carol L Howell weaves together taped interviews with Stewart; excerpts from his letters, notes, and papers; and recollections of family members and others. The result is a fascinating sketch not only of Omer Stewart as a person but also of his contributions to the field of anthropology and the academic and social milieu in which he participated. A must for anthropologists and anyone interested in the art of biography.

    • Archaeology

      Quetzalcoatl and the Irony of Empire

      Myths and Prophecies in the Aztec Tradition, Revised Edition

      by David Carrasco

      David Carrasco draws from the perspectives of the history of religions, anthropology, and urban ecology to explore the nature of the complex symbolic form of Quetzalcoatl in the organisation, legitimation, and subversion of a large segment of the Mexican urban tradition. His new Preface addresses this tradition in the light of the Columbian quincentennial.

    • History of religion

      Representing Aztec Ritual

      Performance, Text, and Image in the Work of Sahagun

      by Eloise Quinones Keber

      Arriving in Mexico less than a decade after the Spanish conquest of 1521, the Franciscan missionary Bernardino de Sahagún not only laboured to supplant native religion with Christianity, he also gathered voluminous information on virtually every aspect of Aztec (Nahua) life in contact-period Mexico. His pioneering ethnographic work relied on interviews with Nahua elders and the assistance of a younger generation of bicultural, missionary-trained Nahuas. Sahagún's remarkably detailed descriptions of Aztec ceremonial life offer the most extensive account of a non-Western ritual system recorded before modern times. This book uses Sahagún's corpus as a starting point to focus on ritual performance, a key element in the functioning of the Aztec world. With topics ranging from the ritual use of sand and paper to the sacrifice of women, contributors explore how Aztec rites were represented in the images and texts of documents compiled under colonial rule and the implications of this European filter for our understanding of these ceremonies. Incorporating diverse disciplinary perspectives, contributors include Davíd Carrasco, Philip P. Arnold, Kay Read, H. B. Nicholson, Eduardo Matos Moctezuma, Guilhem Olivier, Doris Heyden, and Eloise Quiñones Keber.

    • Sikhism
      August 2004

      Understanding Sikhism

      by W. Owen Cole

      One of the world’s major faiths with more than 20 million adherents, Sikhism is a religion which most people, including academics, seem to ignore. This introduction assumes no prior knowledge on the part of the reader. At the centre of the religion is the scripture, the Guru Granth Sahib, it is the focus of Sikh theology and practice to the extent that no one is allowed to come between it and the believer. There is no priesthood. A particular aspect of Sikhism is its relationship with and attitude to other religions, something of particular significance in our multi religious society.

    • Other non-Christian religions
      January 2013

      Understanding Chinese Religions

      by Joachim Gentz

      Chinese religions are often presented as a unity with each tradition possessing features typical of a Chinese religious system. From the 17th century there has been debate in Europe as to whether religion in China exists at all or whether what appear as Chinese religions are atheistic, purely functional, superstitious, cults and rituals.

    • Hinduism
      July 2012

      Understanding the Brahma Kumaris

      by Frank Whaling

      The Brahma Kumaris are a new spiritual tradition. The movement began in 1936 and has overa million adherents world-wide. In this book Frank Whaling seeks to understand the Brahma Kumaris. As with all spiritual traditions, the Brahma Kumaris are different, bewildering, fascinating in their newness and in their complexity.

    • Baha'i
      November 2005

      Understanding the Baha'i Faith

      by Wendi Momen, Moojan Moomen

      The Baha’i Faith is the youngest of the world’s independent religions and the second most widespread after Christianity. Dating from its Iranian origins in 1844, it has rapidly spread to every country of the world and counts more than five million adherents. The central teaching of Bahá’u’lláh, the founder of the Baha’i Faith, is that it is imperative for humanity to recognize that is a single race so that it can act in unity as one global community to meet the challenges of the present day. The Baha’i scriptures provide a wide-ranging social programme designed for people living today coupled with spiritual principles that echo those found in the great faith traditions of the past.

    • Fiction
      November 2011

      Code Blood

      by Kurt Kamm

      Colt Lewis, a rookie fire paramedic, is obsessed with finding the severed foot of his first victim after she dies in his arms. His search takes him into the connected lives of a graduate research student, with the rarest blood in the world and the vampire fetishist who is stalking her. Within the corridors of high-stakes medical research laboratories, the shadow world of body parts dealers, and the underground Goth clubs of Los Angeles, Lewis uncovers a tangled maze of needles, drugs and maniacal ritual, all of which lead to death. But whose death? An unusual and fast-paced LA Noir thriller.

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