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The Major Religions: An Introduction with Texts Paperback – 12 May 2004

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"If you need a text for an introductory course in the world religions, your search will be over after you examine Professor Burke′s The Major Religions. What recommends it? Its fresh, lucid and unpretentious style, its direct approach to the essentials of each major tradition, its clear awareness of the abilities and resources of the undergraduate mind. The text is an ideal combination of analysis, illustration, classical texts (with commentary), discussion questions, suggestions for tests and additional reading. Professor Burke and his editors have produced what comes close to the ideal college textbook. Its exciting arrangement will have students eager to turn to their religion assignment." James E. Biechler, Emeritus Professor of Religions, La Salle University, Philadelphia

"Professor Burke′s approach is one which I think would be appealing in those contexts (particularly one semester courses) for which it is designed. The inclusion of sources in the book, if designed for one–semester use, is an excellent idea, and furthermore, I think that Professor Burke′s selection of sources is remarkably apt. Pedagogically, I think that the book is well done: it will be accessible and interesting to students, and it has plenty of examples." Professor Dewey D. Wallace Jr., George Washington University

"This book is the best, brief description available currently of the origins, tenets and ways of worship of the world′s great religions aimed at beginning students. T. Patrick Burke writes in a clear and easily understandable style that will help the reader go back to it regularly to grasp the essentials of faith and its role in the society." Murray Friedman, Director, The Myer and Rosaline Feinstein Center for American Jewish History at Temple University

From the Back Cover

This popular introduction to the world s religions provides a comprehensive survey of the major religious traditions together with selected primary readings. The text focuses on the beliefs and values that animate each religion, helping students to understand what makes them meaningful to their followers. For the second edition, the text has been fully revised and now features: Updated material throughout, building on the success of the first edition A complete new chapter on Sikhism, including selected supporting texts Additional material on each religion s ethics and their encounter with the modern world Improved visual design, with extensive student aids including revised maps, timeline and charts Chapter–by–chapter discussion and test questions, summaries, and suggestions for further reading. Assuming no prior knowledge, The Major Religions is the ideal introduction for students who are approaching the subject for the first time. The second edition is supported by a website at featuring additional resources for lecturers and students.

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Through prolonged austerities and devotional practices the sage Narada won the grace of the god Vishnu. Read the first page
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Excellent Introductory Text on the Topic 30 Jan. 2005
By Catherine Berry Stidsen - Published on
Format: Paperback
I have had the opportunity to read and use both the first and second editions of Dr. Burke's book. I find them outstanding in their field. The second edition contains excellent information on the Sikh religion, an addition to the first publication. It is accurate and insightful. It is evident that Dr. Burke takes the time to know the communities about which he writes and that he does not produce material simply from an academic arm chair.

The concise summaries at the end of each chapter are valuable as are the study questions. They would help the reader/student to focus. What I like especially is that the book contains texts of the various traditions and does not require students to access them elsewhere. This is a bonus.

I have some difficulty with the format of the book which I am sure is not of Burke's making but there are wide outer margins and very slim inner ones which make reading somewhat difficult. Perhaps the intention is that students can make notes in these wide margins but overall I find this difficult to work with. I hope that would be corrected in a future edition. I wonder, too, why Blackwell has opted to use only black and white photographs as illustrations and many of these are rather small for today's very visual learners.

There is a website connected with the second edition with materials that can be downloaded by teachers. I must admit to being disappointed in this material. Ideally this would contain colour visuals perhaps of the photographs in the text itself. In North America at least, the "teaching as telling" mode is suffering. More and more introductory courses at university need hands on activities for the retention of insights and information that most teachers hope for for their students.

I recommend the book wholeheartedly. Its content is superb. I hope for an improved format more user-friendly for visual learners in a future edition.

Catherine Berry Stidsen, Ph.D., R.T.C., Cayuga, Ontario
best book on introducing the subject of world religions available 30 July 2009
By Karl A. Pohlhaus - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have taught World Religions for over a dozen years. This is the best book I have ever come across. It is clear, concise, accurate, easy to read, well formatted and provides everything a teacher could hope for in preparing his classes. Students will find it delightful, objective and worded for quick understanding. It doesn't get better than this. I only wish CD's came with this text for each of the Religions covered. KP
Loved the class! 2 Aug. 2013
By Nicole S - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I needed this book for a "world's religions" class in college. It was pretty informative and interesting. I loved the class and the book went perfectly with the class. So, I suppose it's a decent book. It contains Buddhism, Judaism, Hinduism, and Christianity.
Great! 20 Aug. 2010
By Hailey DeGraw - Published on
Format: Paperback
Book was in better condiditon that expected! Very good price compared to the bookstore cant wait to start class!
Good Book for a Class 12 Sept. 2013
By Jilliek - Published on
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book is in Good condition and its a book I needed for a class so I'm glad it looks good and readable.
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