Download Fantastic Spiritualities by J’Annine Jobling (.PDF)

Fantastic Spiritualities: Monsters, Heroes And The Contemporary Religious Imagination by J’Annine Jobling
Requirements: PDF Reader, 1.1 mb
Overview: In this work Jobling argues that religious sensibility in the Western world is in a process of transformation, but that we see here change, not decline, and that the production and consumption of the fantastic in popular culture offers an illuminating window onto spiritual trends and conditions. She examines four major examples of the fantastic genre: the Harry Potter series (Rowling), His Dark Materials (Pullman), Buffy the Vampire Slayer (Whedon) and the Earthsea cycle (Le Guin), demonstrating that the spiritual universes of these four iconic examples of the fantastic are actually marked by profoundly modernistic assumptions, raising the question of just how contemporary spiritualities (often deemed postmodern) navigate philosophically the waters of truth, morality, authority, selfhood and the divine. Jobling tackles what she sees as a misplaced disregard for the significance of the fantasy genre as a worthy object for academic investigation by offering a full-length, thematic, comparative and cross-disciplinary study of the four case-studies proposed, chosen because of their significance to the field and because these books have all been posited as exemplars of a ‘postmodern’ religious sensibility. This work shows how attentiveness to spiritual themes in cultural icons can offer the student of theology and religions insight into the framing of the moral and religious imagination in the late twentieth and twenty-first centuries and how this can prompt traditional religions to reflect on whether their own narratives are culturally framed in a way resonating with the ‘signs of the times’.
Genre: Nonfiction > Religion & Spirituality

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Download The Nature of Human Brain Work by Joseph Dietzgen (.PDF)

The Nature of Human Brain Work: An Introduction to Dialectics by Joseph Dietzgen
Requirements: PDF Reader, 10,2 MB
Overview: This primer on dialectical materialism is the first and best-known work of a pioneer of socialist philosophy. Joseph Dietzgen, a tanner by trade, was self-taught and developed his theory of dialectical materialism independently of Karl Marx. In this book he argues that thinking is a process involving two opposing aspects—generalization and specialization—and all thought is therefore a dialectical process. Knowledge is limited, truth is relative, and the only absolute is existence itself. This cornerstone of socialist philosophy lays the foundation for a nondogmatic, flexible, nonsectarian yet principled socialist politics.
Genre: Non-Fiction > Philosophy

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Download Of Elephants and Toothaches by Eva Badowska (.ePUB)

Of Elephants and Toothaches: Ethics, Politics, and Religion in Krzysztof Kieslowski’s ‘Decalogue’ by Eva Badowska (Editor),‎ Francesca Parmeggiani (Editor)
Requirements: ePUB Reader, 2 MB
Overview: his collection is the first to offer a genuinely interdisciplinary approach to Krzysztof Kieślowski’s Decalogue, a ten-film cycle of modern tales that touch on the ethical dilemmas of the Ten Commandments. The cycle’s deft handling of moral ambiguity and inventive technique established Kieślowski as a major international director.

Kieślowski once said, “Both the deep believer and the habitual skeptic experience toothaches in exactly the same way.” Of Elephants and Toothaches takes seriously the range of thought, from theological to skeptical, condensed in the cycle’s quite human tales. Bringing together scholars of film, philosophy, literature, and several religions, the volume ranges from individual responsibility, to religion in modernity, to familial bonds, to human desire and material greed. It explores Kieślowski’s cycle as it relentlessly solicits an ethical response that stimulates both inner disquiet and interpersonal dialogue.
Genre: Non-Fiction > Ethics

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Download Speaking Qur’an by Timur R. Yuskaev (.ePUB)

Speaking Qur’an: An American Scripture by Timur R. Yuskaev
Requirements: ePUB Reader, 2 MB
Overview: In Speaking Qur’an: An American Scripture, Timur R. Yuskaev examines how Muslim Americans have been participating in their country’s cultural, social, religious, and political life. Essential to this process, he shows, is how the Qur’an has become an evermore deeply American text that speaks to central issues in the lives of American Muslims through the spoken-word interpretations of Muslim preachers, scholars, and activists.

Yuskaev illustrates this process with four major case studies that highlight dialogues between American Muslim public intellectuals and their audiences. First, through an examination of the work of Fazlur Rahman, he addresses the question of how the premodern Qur’an is translated across time into modern, American settings. Next the author contemplates the application of contemporary concepts of gender to renditions of the Qur’an alongside Amina Wadud’s American Muslim discourses on justice.Then he demonstrates how the Qur’an becomes a text of redemption in W. D. Mohammed’s oral interpretation of the Qur’an as speaking directly to the African American experience. Finally he shows how, before and after 9/11, Hamza Yusuf invoked the Qur’an as a guide to the political life of American Muslims.

Set within the rapidly transforming contexts of the last half century, and central to the volume, are the issues of cultural translation and embodiment of sacred texts that Yuskaev explores by focusing on the Qur’an as a spoken scripture. The process of the Qur’an becoming an American sacred text, he argues, is ongoing. It comes to life when the Qur’an is spoken and embodied by its American faithful.
Genre: Non-Fiction > Religion & Spirituality

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Download The Phoenix by Joseph Nigg (.PDF)

The Phoenix: An Unnatural Biography of a Mythical Beast by Joseph Nigg
Requirements: PDF Reader, 6 MB
Overview: Arising triumphantly from the ashes of its predecessor, the phoenix has been an enduring symbol of resilience and renewal for thousands of years. But how did this mythical bird become so famous that it has played a part in cultures around the world and throughout human history? How much of its story do we actually know? Here to offer a comprehensive biography and engaging (un)natural history of the phoenix is Joseph Nigg, esteemed expert on mythical creatures—from griffins and dragons to sea monsters.

Beginning in ancient Egypt and traveling around the globe and through the centuries, Nigg’s vast and sweeping narrative takes readers on a brilliant tour of the cross-cultural lore of this famous, yet little-known, immortal bird. Seeking both the similarities and the differences in the phoenix’s many myths and representations, Nigg describes its countless permutations over millennia, including legends of the Chinese “phoenix,” which was considered one of the sacred creatures that presided over China’s destiny; classical Greece and Rome, where it can be found in the writings of Herodotus and Ovid; nascent and medieval Christianity, in which it came to embody the resurrection; and in Europe during the Renaissance, when it was a popular emblem of royals. Nigg examines the various phoenix traditions, the beliefs and tales associated with them, their symbolic and metaphoric use, the skepticism and speculation they’ve raised, and their appearance in religion, bestiaries, and even contemporary popular culture, in which the ageless bird of renewal is employed as a mascot and logo, including for our own University of Chicago.
Genre: Non-Fiction > Folklore & Mythology

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Download On Ethics and History by Philip J. Ivanhoe (.ePUB)+

On Ethics and History: Essays and Letters of Zhang Xuecheng by Philip J. Ivanhoe
Requirements: ePUB Reader, AZW Reader, 2 MB
Overview: Zhang Xuecheng (1738–1801) has primarily been read as a philosopher of history. This volume presents him as an ethical philosopher with a distinctive understanding of the aims and methods of Confucian self-cultivation. Offered in English translation for the first time, this collection of Zhang’s essays and letters should challenge our current understanding of this Qing dynasty philosopher.

On Ethics and History also contains translations of three important essays written by Tang-dynasty Confucian Han Yu and shows how Zhang responded to Han’s earlier works. Those with an interest in ethical philosophy, religion, and Chinese thought and culture will find still relevant much of what Zhang argued for in his own day.
Genre: Non-Fiction > Philosophy

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Download Uses and Abuses of Moses by Theodore Ziolkowski (.ePUB)

Uses and Abuses of Moses: Literary Representations since the Enlightenment by Theodore Ziolkowski
Requirements: ePUB Reader, 2 MB
Overview: In Uses and Abuses of Moses, Theodore Ziolkowski surveys the major literary treatments of the biblical figure of Moses since the Enlightenment. Beginning with the influential treatments by Schiller and Goethe, for whom Moses was, respectively, a member of a mystery cult and a violent murderer, Ziolkowski examines an impressive array of dramas, poems, operas, novels, and films to show the many ways in which the charismatic figure of Moses has been exploited—the “uses and abuses” of the title—to serve a variety of ideological and cultural purposes.

Ziolkowski’s wide-ranging and in-depth study compares and analyzes the attempts by nearly one hundred writers to fill in the gaps in the biblical account of Moses’ life and to explain his motivation as a leader, lawgiver, and prophet. As Ziolkowski richly demonstrates, Moses’ image has been affected by historical factors such as the Egyptomania of the 1820s, the revolutionary movements of the mid-nineteenth century, the early move toward black liberation in the United States, and critical biblical scholarship of the late nineteenth century before, in the twentieth century, being appropriated by Marxists, Socialists, Nazis, and Freudians.

The majority of the works studied are by Austro-German and Anglo-American writers, but Ziolkowski also includes significant examples of works from Hungary, Sweden, Norway, the Ukraine, Denmark, the Netherlands, Italy, and France. The figure of Moses becomes an animate seismograph, in Ziolkowski’s words, through whose literary reception we can trace many of the shifts in the cultural landscape of the past two centuries.
Genre: Non-Fiction > Religion & Spirituality > Christianity

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Download A Cultural History of Tarot by Helen Farley (.PDF)

A Cultural History of Tarot: From Entertainment to Esotericism by Helen Farley
Requirements: PDF reader, 6.2MB
Overview: The enigmatic and richly illustrative tarot deck reveals a host of strange and iconic mages, such as The Tower, The Wheel of Fortune, The Hanged Man and The Fool: over which loom the terrifying figures of Death and The Devil. The 21 numbered playing cards of tarot have always exerted strong fascination, way beyond their original purpose, and the multiple resonances of the deck are ubiquitous. From T. S. Eliot and his “”wicked pack of cards”” in “”The Waste Land”” to the psychic divination of Solitaire in Ian Fleming’s “”Live and Let Die””; and from the satanic novels of Dennis Wheatley to the deck’s adoption by New Age practitioners, the cards have in modern times become inseparably connected to the occult. They are now viewed as arguably the foremost medium of prophesying and foretelling. Yet, as the author shows, originally the tarot were used as recreational playing cards by the Italian nobility in the Renaissance. It was only much later, in the 18th and 19th centuries, that the deck became associated with esotericism before evolving finally into a diagnostic tool for mind, body and spirit. This is the first book to explore the remarkably varied ways in which tarot has influenced culture. Tracing the changing patterns of the deck’s use, from game to mysterious oracular device, Helen Farley examines tarot’s emergence in 15th century Milan and discusses its later associations with astrology, kabbalah and the Age of Aquarius.
Genre: Non-fiction | Faith, Beliefs & Philosophy

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Download Encyclopedia of Religion by Lindsay Jones (.PDF)

Encyclopedia of Religion (vol.1-14) edited by Lindsay Jones
Requirements: PDF Reader, 153 mb
Overview: Among Library Journal’s picks of the most important reference works of the millennium – with the Encyclopedia Judaica and the New Catholic Encyclopedia – Mircea Eliade’s Encyclopedia of Religion won the American Library Associations’ Dartmouth Medal in 1988 and is widely regarded as the standard reference work in the field. This second edition, which is intended to reflect both changes in academia and in the world since 1987, includes almost all of the 2,750 original entries – many heavily updated – as well as approximately 600 entirely new articles. Preserving the best of Eliade’s cross-cultural approach, while emphasizing religion’s role within everyday life and as a unique experience from culture to culture, this new edition is the definitive work in the field for the 21st century. An international team of scholars and contributors have reviewed, revised and added to every word of the classic work, making it relevant to the questions and interests of all researchers. The result is an essential purchase for libraries of all kinds.
Genre: Nonfiction, Religion

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Download Chi: Discovering Your Life Energy by Waysun Liao (.ePUB)

Chi: Discovering Your Life Energy by Waysun Liao
Requirements: ePUB Reader, 1.3MB | Retail
Overview: Chi is the invisible energy of life that flows in and around us throughout the universe. Used skillfully, it can have a remarkable effect on health and vitality—to the degree that you’d be tempted to call it magical, if it weren’t so completely natural. Here is a perfect introduction to chi that explains in a direct and simple way what it is and why it is essential to a healthy and vital life. It provides an easy-to-understand explanation of chi, and then helps readers recognize, develop, and strengthen their own chi through specific breathing techniques and basic exercises, all demonstrated by the author.

There are many books on chi development through t’ai chi and qigong practice, but this one goes deeper to enable you to understand the fundamental principles as you cultivate it. This book is a reference for alternative health professionals such as acupuncturists and shiatsu therapists and their patients, as well as for anyone who practices t’ai chi, qigong, aikido, and other chi-based martial arts.
Genre: Non-fiction | Faith, Beliefs & Philosophy

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