£14.00
FREE Delivery in the UK.
Only 13 left in stock (more on the way).
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon.
Gift-wrap available.
Quantity:1
The Sacred and the Profan... has been added to your Basket
Trade in your item
Get a £0.34
Gift Card.
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 3 images

The Sacred and the Profane: The Nature of Religion (Harvest Book) Paperback – 31 Dec 1959


See all 9 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Kindle Edition
"Please retry"
Hardcover
"Please retry"
Paperback
"Please retry"
£14.00
£4.39 £1.73
£14.00 FREE Delivery in the UK. Only 13 left in stock (more on the way). Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.

Special Offers and Product Promotions

  • When you trade in £15 or more you’ll receive an additional £5 Amazon.co.uk Gift Card for the next time you spend £10 or more.

Frequently Bought Together

The Sacred and the Profane: The Nature of Religion (Harvest Book) + Shamanism: Archaic Techniques of Ecstasy (Bollingen Series (General)) + Rites and Symbols of Initiation: The Mysteries of Birth and Rebirth
Price For All Three: £56.43

Buy the selected items together


Trade In this Item for up to £0.34
Trade in The Sacred and the Profane: The Nature of Religion (Harvest Book) for an Amazon Gift Card of up to £0.34, which you can then spend on millions of items across the site. Trade-in values may vary (terms apply). Learn more

Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Harcourt Australia; Underlining/Highlighting edition (31 Dec. 1959)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 015679201X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0156792011
  • Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 1.7 x 20.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 60,701 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, and more.

Product Description

Paperback. Pub Date: 1987 Pages: 256 Publisher: Harcourt ace Jovanovich. A noted Historian of religion traces MANIFESTATIONS of the Sacred from primitive to modern times in terms of space time. Nature and the cosmos and life itself. Index . Translated by Willard Trask.

Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Ashtar Command on 3 April 2011
Format: Paperback
Mircea Eliade's "The Sacred and the Profane" is a classic within the academic field known as comparative religion. First published in 1957, the book attempts to give a general overview of the religious or spiritual worldview and then contrasts it with the secular ditto. The author also deals with the differences between Christianity and the "pagan" religions (but also sees some similarities).

Most of the book is an analysis of various recurring motifs in the "pagan" religious traditions, including myths, symbols and rituals. However, "The Sacred and the Profane" isn't really an anthropological survey, but rather a philosophical reflection on the nature of religion per se. It could be a hard read, unless you are a philosophically-minded practitioner of some religious or spiritual tradition. Eliade's book attempts to analyze religion as an independent phenomenon, without reducing it to sociology or psychology. It often feels suspended in another dimension. A more spiritual dimension, perhaps?

It's obvious that Eliade somehow believes in reality of the phenomenon he is describing. He traces the origins of religion to an objective revelation of the sacred, an irruption of the supernatural into "our" material world, an irruption he calls a hierophany. Indeed, only the hierophany makes sense of the world, which would be a formless mess or void without it. Religion is therefore the centre of man's existence. The book criticizes the modern world for its desacralization and secularization, while pointing out that even modern man often acts in ways that are religious or crypto-religious. Eliade also takes a cue from Jung and his theory of archetypes, claiming that humans are innately religious and that religious symbols are deeply ingrained in our subconscious.
Read more ›
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
39 of 42 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 2 Jan. 1999
Format: Paperback
This eminently readable introduction to cross-cultural religious studies is one of the gems of my personal library. Eliade does not believe that "primitive" means "simple-minded" or "outmoded", hence, his discussions of "primitive" religious ideas are sympathetic and penetrating. The final section of the book skewers "modern" humanity's pretensions to having transcended the sacred. The appendix contains a succinct and iluminating chronology of the development of "history of religions" studies. If you always thought (along with most of the rest of the world) that "myth" simply meant "old superstition" or "false story"' this book has a few surprises in store for you. Just read it!
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Tami Brady TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 22 April 2008
Format: Paperback
Years ago, I was assigned this book in one of my university classes. I number it in my most memorable and personally influential works that I have ever read. At the time, I had just begun to study archaeology and had very little understanding of the concept of ethnocentricism. My personal way of thinking was very black and white. The only real experience that I had with the dichotomies of the sacred versus the profane at that point was my own experiences.

The Sacred and the Profane gave me an entirely different perspective. I began seeing how others saw religion, spirituality, ritual, and symbolism in slightly different ways. How certain experiences could be interpreted in a variety of ways to become personal and cultural beliefs. I also noticed how these beliefs permeated into everyday life. So began my interests in spirituality, symbolic dichotomies, and the varied beliefs of others.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
By G on 12 Jan. 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A fine book by Mircea Eliade. I also liked "The Myth of the Eternal Return" a marvellous book. Eliade becomes somewhat repetitive in his oeuvre and tends to disgress into lengthly examples of points he seeks to make but overall very interesting reading. If you like this kind of stuff, do also check out the members of the so called "Traditionalist School", such as Seyyed H Nasr, René Guénon, Frithjof Schuon, Martin Lings and Wolfgang Smith.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
By Martyn Baldwin on 12 Mar. 2015
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An easy read full of interesting titbits.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again


Feedback