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Introduction to World Religions, 2nd ed.

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A leading textbook for world religion, this new edition is designed to help students in their study and research of the world's religious traditions. Known and valued for its balanced approach and its respected board of consulting editors, this text addresses ways to study religion, provides broad coverage of diverse religions, and offers an arresting layout with rich illustrations.

The second edition has new and extended primary source readings, a stronger section on the religions of South Asia, additional maps, a new full-color, student-friendly format, and more. Authoritative content, comprehensive scope, arresting four-color illustration, and innovative learning aids, Introduction to World Religions is now in multiple formats for complete versatility.

Resource Experts
  • Primary Source Readings
  • Extensive discussion and analysis of both Western and non-Western religions
  • Detailed and colorful illustrations
  • Comprehensive in scope
  • Part 1: Understanding Religion
    • What is Religion?
    • Phenomenology and the Study of Religion
    • The Anthropology of Religion
    • The Sociology of Religion
    • The Psychology of Religion
    • Theological Approaches to the Study of Religion
    • Critical Theory and Religion
    • Ritual and Performance
  • Part 2: Religions of Antiquity
    • Religion Before History
    • Land of the Aztecs and Incas
    • The Ancient Near East: Cradle of Civilization
    • Ancient Egypt: Land of the Priest-King
    • Zoroastrianism: A Historical Overview
    • Zoroastrian Beliefs
    • The Ancient Religions of Greece and Rome
    • The Religion of the Celts: The Old Gods
    • The Religions of Scandinavia: The Norse Gods
    • Nomads of the Steppes
  • Part 3: Indigenous Religions
    • Understanding Indigenous Religions
    • Indigenous Religions in Asia
    • The Foe of Papua New Guinea
    • Australian Aboriginal Religions
    • Melanesia
    • South American Indigenous Religions
    • Native North Americans
    • Inuit
    • Norse Shamanism
    • African Indigenous Religions
    • The Bangwa
    • The Zulu
  • Part 4: Hinduism
    • A Historical Overview
    • Philosophy
    • Sacred Writings
    • Beliefs
    • Worship and Festivals
    • Family and Society
    • Hinduism in the Modern World
  • Part 5: Buddihsm
    • A Historical Overview
    • Sacred Writings
    • Beliefs
    • Family and Society
    • Buddhism in the Modern World
  • Part 6: Jainism
    • A Historical Overview
    • Sacred Writings
    • Beliefs
    • Family and Society
    • Worship and Festivals
    • Jainism in the Modern World
  • Part 7: Chinese Religions
    • Chinese Religions: Sages and Immortals
    • Christianity in Contemporary China
  • Part 8: Korean and Japanese Religions
    • Sinkyo: Korea’s Traditional Religion
    • Japanese Religions: A Tapestry of Traditions
  • Part 9: Judaism
    • A Historical Overview
    • Sacred Writings
    • Beliefs
    • Family and Society
    • Worship and Festivals
    • The Holocaust
    • Branches of Judaism
    • Judaism in the Modern World
  • Part 10: Christianity
    • A Historical Overview
    • Jesus
    • Sacred Writings
    • Beliefs
    • Worship and Festivals
    • Family and Society
    • Contemporary Christianity
  • Part 11: Islam
    • A Historical Overview
    • The Unity and Variety of Islam
    • Sacred Writings
    • Beliefs
    • Worship and Festivals
    • The Law of Islam
    • Science, Art, and Culture
    • Family and Society
    • Islam in the Modern World
  • Part 12: Sikhism
    • A Historical Overview
    • Sacred Writings
    • Beliefs
    • Worship and Festivals
    • Family and Society
    • Sikhism Today
  • Part 13: Religions in Today's World
    • From Existentialism to Postmodernism
    • New Religious Movements
    • The Bahá’í Faith
    • Secularization and Sacralization
    • Religion and Globalization
    • Religion and Politics
  • Part 14: Rapid Fact-Finder

Top Highlights

“‘Tradition’ does not mean nothing ever changes; rather, it means one generation sets standards by which the next might judge the value of an idea or practice before changing. Indigenous religions are not the fossilized remains of the earliest, or first, religions.” (Page 130)

“The original call of the Buddha was: ‘Come, live the holy life in order that you make an end of suffering.’” (Page 221)

“Buddhism is the ‘-ism’ that is named after the Buddha. ‘Buddha’ is not a personal name, but a title meaning ‘the one who has awakened’.” (Page 202)

“The first step is to imagine oneself surrounded by loving-kindness. Then this loving-kindness—sometimes imagined as a white, warm light—is thrown further and further outwards into the world. First of all those dear to the meditator are brought to mind. Then the radius widens, eventually reaching those who are disliked, or even hated. It is a transformative practice that spills into everyday conduct.” (Pages 217–218)

“So what is religion? As with any other item in our lexicon, ‘religion’ is a historical artefact that different social actors use for different purposes: to classify certain parts of their social world in order to celebrate, degrade, or theorize about them. Whatever else it may or may not be, religion is at least an item of rhetoric that group members use to sort out their group identities.” (Page 22)

I chose this text because of its expert content and section on approaches to the study of religions. The text includes pictures, readable text, and short sections, and it provides a wonderful glossary.

—Loleta Collins, Edison Community College

I chose this text because of the quality of the writing and the accompanying photos, charts, maps, and illustrations. The chapter divisions in Introduction to World Religions allow me to assign different sections or divisions of a particular religious tradition and make it easier to pick and choose among passages. My students very much like the personal testimonies of real persons regarding their religious tradition.

—Bruce Flickinger, Flagler College

Introduction to World Religions is easily accessible for students and has a fresh feel to it. The content in the book makes the study of religions personal and brings a friendly face to each of the religions. The book, while a textbook, has a comfortable feel to it. Students that do not like to read feel that it invites them in. As they start flipping through the pages looking at images they find they are curious and start reading.

—Eric Stauffer, Estrella Community College

  • Title: Introduction to World Religions
  • Authors: Tim Dowley, Christopher Partridge
  • Edition: Second Edition
  • Publisher: Fortress Press
  • Print Publication Date: 2013
  • Logos Release Date: 2017
  • Pages: 536
  • Language: English
  • Resources: 1
  • Format: Digital › Logos Research Edition
  • Subject: Religions
  • Resource Type: Monograph
  • Metadata Last Updated: 2022-01-19T22:37:44Z

The Logos edition of Introduction to World Religions, 2nd ed. equips you for better study with cutting-edge functionality and features. Whether you are performing Bible word studies, preparing a sermon, or researching and writing a paper, Logos Bible Software gives you the tools you need to use your digital library effectively and efficiently by searching for verses, finding Scripture references and citations instantly. Additionally, important terms link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, commentaries, theology texts, and other resources in your library. Perform powerful searches to find exactly what you’re looking for. With most Logos resources, you can take the discussion with you using tablet and mobile apps. With Logos Bible Software, the most efficient and comprehensive research tools are in one place, so you get the most out of your study.

Christopher Partridge is professor of religion at Lancaster University. His research and writing focus on new religions and alternative spiritualities in the West.

Tim Dowley is author of The Christians: An Illustrated History (2008) and The Student Bible Atlas (1990), among many other titles on history of Christianity and the Bible.

Beth Wright has edited textbooks in religion and other subjects for more than twelve years. A former Fortress Press editor, she lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota.


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Print list price: $65.00
Save $40.01 (61%)