This book gives readers a readable and well-grounded overview of Hinduism, Buddhism, Convucianism, Daoism, and Shinto. It also aims to be a guide for those who are considering the Asian religions as possible sources of spiritual enrichment. Knowing the basic features of these religious traditions is crucial for understanding both the ancient cultures and today's dynamic civilization of Asia—from India through Southeast Asia, from China to Japan. Based on sound scholarship but written for the general reader, Considering the Asian Religions focuses on the major historical developments in these traditions, with a concluding chapter on significant changes in modern times. It avoids encylopedic coverage, opting for clear explanations over exhaustive detail. Not limiting itself to a neutral recitation of facts, this book offers end-of-chapter evaluations from the standpoint of a Westerner committed to the core values of modernity—reason, cultural pluralism, and a more just and humane world for all. Those conclusions present both a challenge to some of the Asian religious beliefs and practices and a proufound appreciation for ways they can be used to deepen and transform our own religious sensibilities.
About the Author
Wade Wheelock received his Ph.D. in comparative religions, specializing in the religions of Asia, and he spent thirteen years of his career as a college professor.