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Books > Humanities > Religion & beliefs > Non-Christian sacred works & liturgy > Sacred texts > Criticism & exegesis of sacred texts

Debating the Dasam Granth (Hardcover): Robin Rinehart Debating the Dasam Granth (Hardcover)
Robin Rinehart
R1,769 Discovery Miles 17 690 Special order

The Dasam Granth is a 1,428-page anthology of diverse compositions attributed to the tenth Guru of Sikhism, Guru Gobind Singh, and a topic of great controversy among Sikhs. The controversy stems from two major issues: a substantial portion of the Dasam Granth relates tales from Hindu mythology, suggesting a disconnect from normative Sikh theology; and a long composition entitled Charitropakhian tells several hundred rather graphic stories about illicit liaisons between men and women. Sikhs have debated whether the text deserves status as a "scripture" or should be read instead as "literature." Sikh scholars have also long debated whether Guru Gobind Singh in fact authored the entire Dasam Granth. Much of the secondary literature on the Dasam Granth focuses on this authorship issue, and despite an ever-growing body of articles, essays, and books (mainly in Punjabi), the debate has not moved forward. The available manuscript and other historical evidence do not provide conclusive answers regarding authorship. The debate has been so acrimonious at times that in 2000, Sikh leader Joginder Singh Vedanti issued a directive that Sikh scholars not comment on the Dasam Granth publicly at all pending a committee inquiry into the matter. Debating the Dasam Granth is the first English language, book-length critical study of this controversial Sikh text in many years. Based on research on the original text in the Brajbhasha and Punjabi languages, a critical reading of the secondary literature in Punjabi, Hindi, and English, and interviews with scholars and Sikh leaders in India, it offers a thorough introduction to the Dasam Granth, its history, debates about its authenticity, and an in-depth analysis of its most important compositions.

Tradition and Interpretation - Essays by Members of the Society for Old Testament Study (Hardcover): G.W. Anderson Tradition and Interpretation - Essays by Members of the Society for Old Testament Study (Hardcover)
G.W. Anderson
R1,519 Discovery Miles 15 190 Special order

Oxford Scholarly Classics is a new series that makes available again great academic works from the archives of Oxford University Press. Reissued in uniform series design, the reissues will enable libraries, scholars, and students to gain fresh access to some of the finest scholarship of the last century.

Created Equal - How the Bible Broke with Ancient Political Thought (Hardcover): Joshua A. Berman Created Equal - How the Bible Broke with Ancient Political Thought (Hardcover)
Joshua A. Berman
R961 Discovery Miles 9 610 Special order

Joshua Berman engages the text of the Hebrew Bible from a novel perspective -- as a document of social and political thought. He proposes that the Pentateuch can be read as the earliest prescription on record for the establishment of an egalitarian polity. The blueprint that emerges is that of a society that would stand in stark contrast to the social orders found in the surrounding cultures of the ancient Near East -- Egypt, Mesopotamia, Ugarit, and the Hittite Empire -- where the hierarchical structure of the polity was centered on the figure of the king and his retinue. Berman shows that the Pentateuch's egalitarian ideal is articulated in comprehensive fashion and is expressed in its theology, politics, economics, use of technologies of communication, and in its narrative literature. Throughout, he invokes parallels from the modern period as heuristic devices to illuminate the ancient developments under study. Thus, for example, the constitutional principles in the Book of Deuteronomy are examined in the light of principles espoused by Montesquieu, and the rise of the novel in 18th-century England serves to illuminate the advent of new modes of storytelling in biblical narrative.

The Oxford Handbook of Qur'anic Studies (Hardcover): Mustafa Shah, M.A.S. Abdel Haleem The Oxford Handbook of Qur'anic Studies (Hardcover)
Mustafa Shah, M.A.S. Abdel Haleem
R2,923 Discovery Miles 29 230 Special order

The Qur'an is the foundational sacred text of the Islamic faith. Traditionally revered as the literal word of God, its pronouncements and discussions form the bedrock of Islamic beliefs and teachings. Notwithstanding its religious pre-eminence and the fact that it is the sacred text for over one billion of the world's Muslims, the Qur'an is also considered to be the matchless masterpiece of the Arabic language. Its historical impact as a text can be discerned in all aspects of the heritage of the Arabic literary tradition. Over recent decades, academic engagement with the Qur'an has produced an impressive array of scholarship, ranging from detailed studies of the text's unique language, style and structure, to meticulous surveys of its contents, concepts and historical contexts. The Oxford Handbook of Qur'anic Studies is an essential reference and starting point for those with an academic interest in the Qur'an. It offers not only detailed reviews of influential subjects in the field, but also a critical overview of developments in the research discourse. It explores the tradition of Qur'anic exegesis and hermeneutics, making it a comprehensive academic resource for the study of the Qur'an. No single volume devoted to such a broad academic survey of the state of the field currently exists.

A Common Cultural Heritage - Studies on Mesopotamia and the Biblical World in Honor of Barry L. Eichler (Hardcover): Grant... A Common Cultural Heritage - Studies on Mesopotamia and the Biblical World in Honor of Barry L. Eichler (Hardcover)
Grant Frame, Erle Leichty, Karen Sonik, Jeffrey H. Tigay, Steve Tinney
R1,234 Discovery Miles 12 340 Special order
Tanakh, an Owner's Manual - Authorship, Canonization, Masoretic Text, Exegesis, Modern Scholarship and Pedagogy... Tanakh, an Owner's Manual - Authorship, Canonization, Masoretic Text, Exegesis, Modern Scholarship and Pedagogy (Hardcover)
Moshe Sokolow; Afterword by Hayyim J. Angel
R574 R462 Discovery Miles 4 620 Save R112 (20%) Special order

Tanakh, an Owner's Manual offers both a modern and Orthodox approach to the historical and literary frameworks within which the Hebrew Bible should be learned and appreciated. It covers the authorship of its 24 constituent books, their designation as sacred literature (canonization), the development of the Masoretic text, a survey of classic medieval and modern commentaries, the interaction of traditional exegesis and modern biblical scholarship, and a gradual curriculum for developing biblical literacy and comprehension. It reflects the author's insights as they developed over 40 years of studying and teaching, and will be of interest to teachers, students, and anyone who wants a deeper understanding of the Hebrew Bible.

Towards Understanding the Qur'an, v. 1 - Surahs 1-3 (Paperback): Sayyid Abulala Maududi Towards Understanding the Qur'an, v. 1 - Surahs 1-3 (Paperback)
Sayyid Abulala Maududi; Volume editing by Zafar Ishaq Ansari; Sayyid Abul A'la Mawdudi; Translated by Zafar Ishaq Ansari
R473 R416 Discovery Miles 4 160 Save R57 (12%) Special order

An immense understanding of the Qur'an is offered here, a vast treasure of knowledge and deep insight and a valuable exposition of some social, political, economic and legal teachings of the Qur'an. But what makes this work unique is that it presents the Qur'an as a book to be lived by. With notes, an introduction and comprehensive index.

Towards Understanding the Qur'an, v. 3 - Surahs 7-9 (Paperback): Sayyid Abulala Maududi Towards Understanding the Qur'an, v. 3 - Surahs 7-9 (Paperback)
Sayyid Abulala Maududi; Volume editing by Zafar Ishaq Ansari; Sayyid Abul A'la Mawdudi; Translated by Zafar Ishaq Ansari
R468 R411 Discovery Miles 4 110 Save R57 (12%) Special order

An immense understanding of the Qur'an is offered here, a vast treasure of knowledge and deep insight and a valuable exposition of some social, political, economic and legal teachings of the Qur'an. But what makes this work unique is that it presents the Qur'an as a book to be lived by. With notes, an introduction and comprehensive index.

Keys to the Arcana - Shahrastani's Esoteric Commentary on the Qur'an (Paperback): Toby Mayer Keys to the Arcana - Shahrastani's Esoteric Commentary on the Qur'an (Paperback)
Toby Mayer; Toby Mayer
R663 Discovery Miles 6 630 Special order

Only preserved in a single manuscript in Tehran, this remarkable twelfth-century Qur'anic commentary by Muhammad b. 'Abd al-Karim al- Shahrastani marks the achievement of a lifelong, arduous quest for knowledge. Shahrastani began writing Mafatih al-asrar or Keys to the Arcana towards the end of his life and the work reflects the brilliant radicalism of his more private religious views. The introduction and opening chapter of this virtually unknown work is presented here in a bilingual edition, which also includes an introduction and contextual notes by Toby Mayer. In Keys to the Arcana, Shahrastani breaks down the text of the Qur'an and analyses it from a linguistic point of view, with reference to the history of Qur'anic interpretation. The author's ultimate aim is to use an elaborate set of complimentary concepts - the 'keys' of the work's title - to unearth the esoteric meanings of the Qur'anic verses, which he calls the 'arcana' of the verses (asrar al-ayat). A historian of religious and philosophical doctrines, Shahrastani has generally been considered to be a spokesman for the Sunni religious establishment under the Seljuqs. The complimentary concepts in question, however, appear to derive from the Isma'ili Shi'i intellectual tradition, indicating that the author may have been secretly involved in the Isma'ili movement. Shahrastani 's unusually esoteric and highly systematic exegesis of the Qur'an provides a vivid picture of the mature state of scriptural commentary in the twelfth-century CE. Dr Mayer's meticulous translation of Shahrastani 's Introduction and Commentary on Surat al-Fatiha, supplemented by the Arabic text, allows the reader and scholar access to this intriguing Muslim intellectual work for the first time.

Job - The Victim of His People (Hardcover, First): Rene Girard Job - The Victim of His People (Hardcover, First)
Rene Girard; Translated by Yvonne Freccero
R881 Discovery Miles 8 810 Special order

What do we know about the Book of Job? Not very much. The hero complains endlessly. He has just lost his children all his livestock. He scratches his ulcers. The misfortunes of which he complains are all duly enumerated in the prologue. They are misfortunes brought on him by Satan with God's permission. We think we know, but are we sure? Not once in the Dialogues does Job mention either Satan or anything about his misdeeds. Could it be that they are too much on his mind for him to mention them? Possibly, yet Job mentions everything else, and does much more than mention. He dwells heavily on the cause of his misfortune, which is none of those mentioned in the prologue. The cause is not divine, satanic nor physical, but merely human.

Religion and Ethnicity in Canada (Paperback): Paul A. Bramadat, David Seljak Religion and Ethnicity in Canada (Paperback)
Paul A. Bramadat, David Seljak
R1,079 R1,012 Discovery Miles 10 120 Save R67 (6%) Special order

As the leading book in its field, Religion and Ethnicity in Canada has been embraced by scholars, teachers, students, and policy makers as a breakthrough study of Canadian religio-ethnic diversity and its impact on multiculturalism. A team of established scholars looks at the relationships between religious and ethnic identity in Canada's six largest minority religious communities: Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs, Jews, Muslims and practitioners of Chinese religion. The chapters also highlight the ethnic diversity extant within these traditions in order to offer a more nuanced appreciation of the variety of lived experiences of members of these communities.

Together, the contributors develop consistent themes throughout the volume, among them the changing nature of religious practice and ideas, current demographics, racism, and the role of women. Chapters related to the public policy issues of healthcare, education and multiculturalism show how new ethnic and religious diversity are challenging and changing Canadian institutions and society. Comprehensive and insightful, Religion and Ethnicity in Canada makes a unique contribution to the study of world religions in Canada.

New Light from the Prophets (Hardcover): Louis Finkelstein New Light from the Prophets (Hardcover)
Louis Finkelstein
R372 Discovery Miles 3 720 Special order
La connaissance de l'Islam dans l'Occident medieval (Hardcover, New Ed): Marie-Therese D'Alverny, Charles... La connaissance de l'Islam dans l'Occident medieval (Hardcover, New Ed)
Marie-Therese D'Alverny, Charles Burnett, Marie-Therese d'Alverney
R2,764 Discovery Miles 27 640 Special order

This volume, the second in the series of Marie-Therese d'Alverny's selected articles to be published by Variorum, gathers the majority of her studies on the understanding of Islam in the West from the early Middle Ages until the mid-13th century; some related works will be included in a further selection. In the 12th century, as she shows, a serious effort was for the first time made to learn something of the reality behind the fabulous and scurrilous stories about Muhammad and Islam. A collection of translations from Arabic, including the Koran, was commissioned in 1140 by Peter the Venerable of Cluny, and d'Alverny found the manuscript in which his secretary wrote these out. This discovery led her to explore other translations into Latin of the Koran and other Islamic texts, to identify the work of the translators Hermann of Carinthia, Robert of Ketton and Mark of Toledo, and to depict the milieu in which this work was possible.

Studies on the Origins and Uses of Islamic Hadith (Hardcover, New Ed): G.H.A. Juynboll Studies on the Origins and Uses of Islamic Hadith (Hardcover, New Ed)
G.H.A. Juynboll
R2,768 Discovery Miles 27 680 Special order

Since the beginnings of this century western scholars have become familiar with Ignaz Goldziher's hypothesis concerning canonical hadith literature - that religious literary genre of Islam, second in holiness to the Qur'an, which allegedly comprises faithful accounts of what the Prophet of Islam said and did. Goldziher rejected this allegation and maintained that the Hadith rather reflects in the first instance the social, legal, moral and theological debates among the Muslims of the first two and a half centuries after the death of the Prophet. But Goldziher never systematically searched for the real originators of this literature. In this collection of articles, G. H. A. Juynboll deals with the uses Muslims have made of hadith through the ages but studies on chronology, provenance, as well as authorship of the prophetic traditions form the backbone of this anthology. For this purpose the author has developed new methods of analysing the chains of transmitters initially meant to authenticate the individual sayings. His overall position can be summed up as midway between the official Islamic point of view and the stance adopted by his Western predecessors

The Burning Bush (Paperback): Edward Reaugh Smith The Burning Bush (Paperback)
Edward Reaugh Smith
R655 R518 Discovery Miles 5 180 Save R137 (21%) Special order

More significant for Christianity in the twentieth-century than the discoveries of the Nag Hammadi and the Dead Sea Scrolls is the growing American awareness of the works of Rudolf Steiner. Practically unavailable until recently, English translations of his works from the German archives are now gradually coming into print.

Until The Burning Bush, no Bible commentary had incorporated the remarkable spiritual insights of anthroposophy. Now, Edward Reaugh Smith combines own extensive knowledge of traditional biblical scholarship with years of concentrated study of hundreds of Steiner titles. The result is, for the first time ever, a Bible commentary informed by anthroposophical insight.

Because of its radical newness, The Burning Bush, as an introductory volume to a complete series, deviates from the normal commentary mode, presenting a series of essays on terms and phrases of critical importance to a deeper comprehension of the biblical message. It includes an extensive bibliography of Steiner's works as well as numerous charts, diagrams, and cross-references, making this a tremendously valuable research tool.

Edward Reaugh Smith's lifelong search for the deeper meaning of the Bible (which he taught for over twenty-five years before discovering the writings of Steiner) expresses itself in this work.

Lotus Of The Wonderful Law (Paperback, 2nd New edition): W.E. Soothill Lotus Of The Wonderful Law (Paperback, 2nd New edition)
W.E. Soothill
R860 Discovery Miles 8 600 Special order

The "Lotus of the Wonderful (or Mystic) Law" is the most important religious book of the Far East, and has been described as "The Gospel of Half Asia". It is also the chief scripture of Buddhism in China, and therefore the chief source of consolation of the many millions of Buddhists in East Asia. It is justifiable to consider it as one of the greatest and most formative books of the world, and the text is here translated for the use of the Western student whilst an endeavour is made to reveal the contour of the most spiritual drama known in the Far East.

The Twilight Language (Paperback, New Ed): Roderick S. Bucknell, Martin Stuart-Fox The Twilight Language (Paperback, New Ed)
Roderick S. Bucknell, Martin Stuart-Fox
R1,150 Discovery Miles 11 500 Special order

This book investigates two matters which initially appear unconnected: the nature of Buddha's enlightenment and the meaning of Buddhist symbolism. It concludes that these are in fact connected because they ultimately deal with meditative practice. The authors examine the relationship that appears to exist between Buddhist meditative techniques and certain examples of Buddhist symbolism as found in the earliest Pali texts and in the so-called twilight language of the tantras. In doing so, they bring together two approaches of Buddhist hermeneutics which in the past have never been properly integrated: the meditative-descriptive approach and the scholarly-historical approach. The result is an original interpretation of the higher stages of the Buddhist path of enlightenment, and of key aspects of Buddhist cosmology and doctrine.

God, Muhammad and the Unbelievers (Hardcover): David Marshall God, Muhammad and the Unbelievers (Hardcover)
David Marshall
R2,562 Discovery Miles 25 620 Special order


This study of the Qur'an arises from an interest in a pressing contemporary issue, the relationship between Muslims and non-Muslims, 'the Ummah and the Other'.

Qur'an Translation - Discourse, Texture and Exegesis (Hardcover): Hussein Abdul-Raof Qur'an Translation - Discourse, Texture and Exegesis (Hardcover)
Hussein Abdul-Raof
R2,565 Discovery Miles 25 650 Special order


The Qur'an is read by millions of Muslims on a daily basis, yet there is no book available to the reader, Arab or non-Arab, which provides a linguistic and rhetorical insight into Qur'anic discourse. This book explains Qur'an translational problems and provides a thorough account of the unique syntactic, semantic, phonetic, prosodic, pragmatic, and rhetorical features of the Qur'an.

Social Criticism in Popular Religious Literature of the Sixteenth Century (Paperback): Helen C. White Social Criticism in Popular Religious Literature of the Sixteenth Century (Paperback)
Helen C. White
R849 Discovery Miles 8 490 Special order

First Published in 1966. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.

The Daeva Cult in the Gathas - An Ideological Archaeology of Zoroastrianism (Hardcover): Amirahmadi The Daeva Cult in the Gathas - An Ideological Archaeology of Zoroastrianism (Hardcover)
Amirahmadi
R2,685 Discovery Miles 26 850 Special order

Addressing the question of the origins of the Zoroastrian religion, this book argues that the intransigent opposition to the cult of the daevas, the ancient Indo-Iranian gods, is the root of the development of the two central doctrines of Zoroastrianism: cosmic dualism and eschatology (fate of the soul after death and its passage to the other world). The daeva cult as it appears in the Gathas, the oldest part of the Zoroastrian sacred text, the Avesta, had eschatological pretentions. The poet of the Gathas condemns these as deception. The book critically examines various theories put forward since the 19th century to account for the condemnation of the daevas. It then turns to the relevant Gathic passages and analyzes them in detail in order to give a picture of the cult and the reasons for its repudiation. Finally, it examines materials from other sources, especially the Greek accounts of Iranian ritual lore (mainly) in the context of the mystery cults. Classical Greek writers consistently associate the nocturnal ceremony of the magi with the mysteries as belonging to the same religious-cultural category. This shows that Iranian religious lore included a nocturnal rite that aimed at ensuring the soul's journey to the beyond and a desirable afterlife. Challenging the prevalent scholarship of the Greek interpretation of Iranian religious lore and proposing a new analysis of the formation of the Hellenistic concept of `magic,' this book is an important resource for students and scholars of History, Religion and Iranian Studies.

Qur'anic Hermeneutics - Al-Tabrisi and the Craft of Commentary (Paperback): Bruce Fudge Qur'anic Hermeneutics - Al-Tabrisi and the Craft of Commentary (Paperback)
Bruce Fudge
R872 Discovery Miles 8 720 Special order

The work of the twelfth-century Shi'ite scholar al-Tabrisi, Majma' al-bayan, is one of the most important works of medieval commentary on the Qur'an, and is still in use today. This work is an in-depth case study of Islamic exegetical methods and an exploration of the nature of scriptural interpretation in Islam. Drawing on a wide variety of sources including unpublished manuscripts, the author examines how exegesis serves to construct, maintain and defend the status of the Qur'an as scripture and to uphold certain ideological agendas, among them the notion of the literary and rhetorical supremacy of God's revelation in Arabic. Focusing on the genre and process of Qur'anic exegesis itself, he treats Qur'an interpretation as part of a category of religious practice recognizable from the history and comparative study of religion. Written in clear and accessible style, Qur'anic Hermeneutics makes Qur'anic exegesis intelligible to specialists in Islam as well as those interested in scripture and its interpretation in general. As such, it will be a valuable reference to scholars of Islamic studies, religion and scripture.

Refractions of the Scriptural - Critical Orientation as Transgression (Hardcover): Vincent L. Wimbush Refractions of the Scriptural - Critical Orientation as Transgression (Hardcover)
Vincent L. Wimbush
R2,670 Discovery Miles 26 700 Special order

Refractions of the Scriptural is a transdisciplinary collection of essays that seeks to construct a new field of scholarly inquiry with scriptures as a fraught category, analytical wedge, and site for excavation and problematization. The book focuses on the ways in which individual and social bodies manipulate-and are manipulated by- the politics and power encoded in language and formalized canonical knowledge. Scriptures, in this sense, function as complex phenomena that are instrumental to social conservatism as well as social critique and social change. The essays in this volume, written by established and up-and-coming scholars across a wide range of disciplines, seek to locate, engage, and interpret the ways in which the scriptural shapes and reshapes people and the dynamics of identity formation. The chapters are organized around four domains or types of inquiry: the cognitive, the conscientized, the inscriptive, and the formative. It will be of interest to scholars of religion, as well as those interested more broadly in critical social and historical studies.

Nonviolence in the Mahabharata - Siva's Summa on Rishidharma and the Gleaners of Kurukshetra (Hardcover): Alf Hiltebeitel Nonviolence in the Mahabharata - Siva's Summa on Rishidharma and the Gleaners of Kurukshetra (Hardcover)
Alf Hiltebeitel
R2,671 Discovery Miles 26 710 Special order

In Indian mythological texts like the Mahabharata and Ramayana, there are recurrent tales about gleaners. The practice of "gleaning" in India had more to do with the house-less forest life than with residential village or urban life or with gathering residual post-harvest grains from cultivated fields. Gleaning can be seen a metaphor for the Mahabharata poets' art: an art that could have included their manner of gleaning what they made the leftovers (what they found useful) from many preexistent texts into Vyasa's "entire thought"-including oral texts and possibly written ones, such as philosophical debates and stories. This book explores the notion of non-violence in the epic Mahabharata. In examining gleaning as an ecological and spiritual philosophy nurtured as much by hospitality codes as by eating practices, the author analyses the merits and limitations of the 9th century Kashmiri aesthetician Anandavardhana that the dominant aesthetic sentiment or rasa of the Mahabharata is shanta (peace). Mahatma Gandhi's non-violent reading of the Mahabharata via the Bhagavad Gita are also studied. This book by one of the leaders in Mahabharata studies is of interest to scholars of South Asian Literary Studies, Religious Studies as well as Peace Studies, South Asian Anthropology and History.

Introduction to Qur'anic Script (Hardcover): Syed Barakat Ahmad Introduction to Qur'anic Script (Hardcover)
Syed Barakat Ahmad
R2,749 Discovery Miles 27 490 Special order

'Masterly work ... Leads the reader patiently but directly not merely into Qur'anic writing but into the heart of that Holy Book itself ... By the time we have followed Dr Ahmad to the end of this splendid work we have learned something new and indeed something uplifting about one of the world's great books.' Prof. F. E. Peters, New York University.

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