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#1 of 11 Old 12-30-2010, 04:46 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So one of my New Year's Resolutions is to read some texts used by other religions. Some are pretty obvious - the Qu'ran, for instance - but of course, not all religions are based on a text. So can anyone give me any ideas? I'm wanting books that are fairly readable, if possible; not just books about religions, like "Buddhism for Dummies", but books that are (preferably) considered somewhat central to a religion, or hugely influential within it. I'll probably go for 10 books all up (one a month, leaving out June and July because I'll probably be newly postpartum and unable to absorb anything more meaningful than a Peanuts comic). So, is there a "must-read" Wiccan text, for instance?

 

Also, if anyone can point me in the direction of good, respected translations for the non-English texts, that'd be awesome, as "learn Arabic" is sadly not a New Year's Resolution!

 

Muchly appreciated! :)


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#2 of 11 Old 12-30-2010, 05:34 PM
 
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Are you wanting books from other Christian denominations? I'll speak for my own religious heritage. For a foundational understanding of the origin of the Society of Friends (Quakers), you'd start with the writings of George Fox and John Woolman. This book is a good collection of the earliest writings of Friends:
http://www.amazon.com/Quaker-Spirituality-Selected-HarperCollins-Spiritual/dp/0060578726/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1293758639&sr=1-4

The Dhammapada would be a good place to start with Therevâda Buddhism, I would imagine. This is the translation we have in our house:

http://www.amazon.com/Dhammapada-Sayings-Buddha-Oxford-Classics/dp/0199555133/ref=sr_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1293759100&sr=1-6

If I think of anymore, I'll let you know. DH is a big comparative-religions reader, so we have a lot of these texts in our house. I'd think you'd want the Bhagavad-Gita and the Tao Te Ching, but I don't know which editions to recommend, without poking around a bit.




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#3 of 11 Old 12-30-2010, 05:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Yeah, I'm potentially interested in reading things from other Christian denominations, especially those quite dissimilar to my own. Depending how many books people suggest I'll probably have to cull some (or leave them for next year!), but Quaker writings sound really interesting! I might also try to read Augustine's Confessions, which I've never gotten around to reading; or maybe Thomas Aquinas.

 

Is "The Bhagavad-Gita As It Is" a translation - kind of like how English translations of the Qu'ran are called things like "The Meaning of the Glorious Qu'ran"? Or is it a commentary? I've seen that title somewhere around.

 

I should see what religious texts Dad has - he's a pastor, and I know he has a couple of Qu'ran translations, and maybe some Jewish texts.


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#4 of 11 Old 12-30-2010, 08:01 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Llyra View Post

Are you wanting books from other Christian denominations? I'll speak for my own religious heritage. For a foundational understanding of the origin of the Society of Friends (Quakers), you'd start with the writings of George Fox and John Woolman. This book is a good collection of the earliest writings of Friends:
http://www.amazon.com/Quaker-Spirituality-Selected-HarperCollins-Spiritual/dp/0060578726/ref=sr_1_4?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1293758639&sr=1-4

The Dhammapada would be a good place to start with Therevâda Buddhism, I would imagine. This is the translation we have in our house:

http://www.amazon.com/Dhammapada-Sayings-Buddha-Oxford-Classics/dp/0199555133/ref=sr_1_6?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1293759100&sr=1-6

If I think of anymore, I'll let you know. DH is a big comparative-religions reader, so we have a lot of these texts in our house. I'd think you'd want the Bhagavad-Gita and the Tao Te Ching, but I don't know which editions to recommend, without poking around a bit.


 


I can highly recommend Eknath Easwaran's translation and commentary of the Bhagavad Gita (http://www.amazon.com/Bhagavad-Gita-Classics-Indian-Spirituality/dp/1586380192/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1293767903&sr=8-1)

 

Swami Rama's Translation and commentary--"Perennial Psychology of the Bhagavad Gita" [http://www.amazon.com/Perennial-Psychology-Bhagavad-Gita-Rama/dp/0893890901/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1293767960&sr=8-1-spell] is very good too, though not quite as easy a read as the former.

 

I've also heard very good things about Juan Mascaro's version, but I have not read this one personally [http://www.amazon.com/Bhagavad-Gita-Penguin-Classics/dp/0140449183/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1293768036&sr=1-1].

 

 

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#5 of 11 Old 12-30-2010, 09:51 PM
 
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anything by Thich Naht Hahn for Buddhism... or of course the Dalai Llama...

 

The Spiral Dance by Starhawk and Drawing Down the Moon by... oh her name escapes me right now... are good for pagan perspectives

 

 


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#6 of 11 Old 12-31-2010, 10:41 AM
 
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For the Qur'an, I really like Camille Helminski's selection called, "The Light of the Qur'an."  If you're looking for a full Qur'an, then I recommend either Mohammed Asad, Yahiya Emerick, or M.A.S. Abdel Haleem (think that's the guy--Oxford version..usually #1 or 2 on Amazon.) :)

 

I also highly recommend any of Rumi or Hafiz's works.


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#7 of 11 Old 12-31-2010, 03:43 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Am writing all these down! :) Does anyone know if there's a foundational/influential text for the Amish? I've never really heard of them writing any commentaries or anything, but I wonder if the Ordnungs are codified in some kind of text? Or is it just oral tradition and custom?

 

Someone on the other thread suggested the Book of Mormon, which I hadn't even though of - duh! And I'd like to read the apocryphal/deuterocanonical books of the Bible, too. I've read a few of them, but not all.


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#8 of 11 Old 12-31-2010, 04:42 PM
 
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I don't know if there are any Anabaptist writings which are easily accessible, but I bet there are.  I did read a book called, "Amish Peace" which was quite good. (Although not the same.)

 

Have you thought about reading any George Fox? (Quakers/Society of Friends)

 

Also... Baha'i writings? http://reference.bahai.org/en/


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#9 of 11 Old 12-31-2010, 05:47 PM
 
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I'm just going to throw this out there....If you are looking for a Messianic perspective you could look at

 

The Voice of the Lord a messianic jewish daily devotional. It follows the biblical calendar. In the back it has Bibical festivals (original meaning, New Covenant meaning, Last days meaning)

Also has Synagogue Reading Cycle with the NT.

 

Another "book" is the Complete Jewish Bible Translation by David H. Stern- I like the way he translated the NT. You can just get the NT also.

 

I love the devotional so much. I have used it for over 10 years!!!

 

Happy New Year and God bless

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#10 of 11 Old 01-04-2011, 06:35 AM
 
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Rufus jones wrote a lot of texts that heavily influenced modern quaker thought. George fox, john woolman, and rufus jones would cover it.
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#11 of 11 Old 01-05-2011, 03:05 PM
 
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If you want to go back a bit further with Pagan history, folklore, ritual.... Sir James George Frazer's The Golden Bough was first published in 1890. This book is well quoted in many modern Pagan and Wiccan texts.

 

http://www.amazon.com/Golden-Bough-James-George-Frazer/dp/1153704021/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1294267498&sr=8-1

 

More specific to Wicca, I'd recommend The Witches' Bible by Stewart and Janet Farrar. They were initiated into the craft by Gerald Gardener, who originated Wicca as a formal practice. His path was a private coven that required initiation and was oathbound. The practices were not published. Although many aspects have been publicized in his own writtings and those of others over the years.

 

Gardener's coven eventually led to what we know of as Wicca and influenced most of the newer books and paths.

 

http://www.amazon.com/Witches-Bible-Complete-Handbook/dp/0919345921/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1294268086&sr=1-1

 

Also Gardner's right hand woman was Doreen Valiente. She was a heavy influence in his writtings and rituals. She has a lot of published books on magic and witchcraft.

 

Rhianna

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