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1. Dictionary of Philosophy and Religion:
2. The Oxford Dictionary of World
3. Dictionary of Philosophy of Religion
4. Pocket Dictionary of Apologetics
5. The Concise Dictionary of Religion
6. The HarperCollins Dictionary of
7. Dictionary of Celtic Religion
8. Encyclopedic Dictionary of Cults,
9. The Concise Oxford Dictionary
10. The Oxford Dictionary of the Jewish
11. The Continuum Dictionary of Religion
12. Illustrated Dictionary of Religion:
13. Illustrated Dictionary of Religions
14. The Cambridge Dictionary of Christianity
15. Dictionary of Roman Religion
16. Abingdon Dictionary of Living
17. The Watkins Dictionary of Religions
18. The Oxford Dictionary of Classical
19. Historical Dictionary of Medieval
20. Historical Dictionary of Jesus

1. Dictionary of Philosophy and Religion: Eastern and Western Thought
by William L. Reese
Paperback: 856 Pages (1996-08)
list price: US$39.98 -- used & new: US$2.99
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1573926213
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
"The strength of this dictionary is in the many cross references that lead to explanation of key terms within the context of the conceptual systems of those who have introduced and developed [them]." -- ALA BooklistAmazon.com Review
For thorough treatments of Ajivikas and the Apologists, thederivation and meaning of "angst" and"anthropopathism," and profiles of Apollo, Al-Kindi, andAntiochus of Ascalon, William Reese's Dictionary of Philosophy andReligion is the tome of preference. And it does a fine job withB through Z, as well. With more than 4,000 entries, thedictionary delves into Continental and Asian philosophies andreligions, and provides biographies of more than 900 ancient,medieval, and modern philosophers. It's erudite, inclusive,accessible, and covers the major philosophers, gods, tenets, and termsof both the Eastern and Western worlds. --Stephanie Gold ... Read more

Customer Reviews (9)

5-0 out of 5 stars Highly Readable and Useful
This is one of the most readable books that I own, which seems out of character for a "Dictionary of Philosophy and Religion" but it is very true.I can sit down with this book for hours at any given time.I think a big part of that is the excellent cross-reference system, so you can start anywhere and then see the linkages between different thoughts; which means that every reading of the book is like a journey.Another great feature of the book is that it covers both ideas and the people who forwarded them in the linking system so you can start with a study on epistemology and then end up ranging over half the book because you link to the people with the ideas and then back to the other ideas that the particular philospher had.

The drawbacks to such an approach are clear.After all, the book has to have some limitation to its length and it is covering many authors who wrote many thousands of pages on their own ideas, so the articles have to do quite a bit of summing up.Since it is absurd to expect deeper coverage from such a book anyway, I feel just fine highly recommending it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Indispensible
I think this is a great reference book to have for anybody who is interested in the world of philosophy and religion. However its only shortcoming is there is more coverage on western civilization than others. It is understandable in any case because of the great difficulties involved in covering all civilizations. I hope the future expanded editions may remedy this to some extent. I am very glad to have a copy of it.

5-0 out of 5 stars Timely delivery in good condition
The ordered book arrived on time in good condition. Thanks.

5-0 out of 5 stars A Cure for Boredom
When I am bored with everything, this is one of the books I like to pick up and browse through.There's so much material here, I'm bound to find something interesting or even inspiring.

5-0 out of 5 stars This has taught me a lot.
I have been using this book for years, but I never had to learn anything that is in this book, being so amateur in philosophy that I don't have to trouble myself with the ideas for which most of the people in this book have become famous.I have usually expected things to be much simpler than the information which this book has to offer.It has nice definitions of some Greek and Latin words that I find meaningful, once I know what they are supposed to be about.On the Hebrew source of the word "Gehenna," the place used for "the city dump of Jerusalem" where fires burned constantly, the extra information, "according to tradition, [first-born] children had been sacrificed there to the god Moloch," provides a lot of insight into its use in The New Testament, where the King James Version often uses "hell."

For years, this book was my main source of information on Giordano Bruno (1548-1600).I suspect that it is right about "he was condemned to death, and burned alive in the Campo Dei Fiori on February 17, 1600."I have tried to make sense of a few of Bruno's books, like THE EXPULSION OF THE TRIUMPHANT BEAST, but I'm inclined to accept the list of main ideas in this dictionary as the sum of his accomplishments.Dying for the idea that "The universe is infinite" makes more sense than some of his monads, and "To consider reality in its multiplicity" is an achievement that I can appreciate.

On the other hand, the entry for Paul Tillich (1886-1965) illustrates a theologian's ability to distinguish "between three forms of reasoning~heteronymous, autonomous, and theonomous."I thought heteronymous would be pretty good, but Tillich thought that even "Autonomous reason takes its principles from within, but thereby reveals itself as vacuous and tautological."Being able to accept that Tillich would say that is part of being able to appreciate what this book is all about.I'm not saying that these guys are always right about anything. ... Read more

2. The Oxford Dictionary of World Religions
by John Bowker
Paperback: 1126 Pages (2007-08-06)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$40.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0198662424
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Here is the most comprehensive and up-to-date dictionary of religion available in paperback.Written by an expert team of 80 international and multi-faith contributors, the volume contains over 8,200 entries and an original and in-depth introductory essay.
Readers will find information on:
Religions: Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Jainism, Shinto, Sikhism, Taoism, and much more
Movements, Sects, and Cults: Over 500 entries on everything from Cargo Cults and the New Age movement to Rastafarians and Soka Gakkai
Sacred Texts: Over 1,000 entries covering the sacred writings of religions worldwide
Individuals: Including founders, leaders, gurus, philosophers, mystics, and heretics
Sacred Sites:Cities, buildings, centers of pilgrimage
Customs:Religious practices, dogmas, beliefs, traditions, festivals and fasts, and artifacts such as altars, rosaries, icons, and torah ornaments
Ethics: Entries cover world-wide religious teachings on abortion, animals, birth control, war, sexuality and homosexuality, and suicide
In addition, the Dictionary features a 13,000-item topical index, directing readers to subjects that might not have their own entries, such as Brahman, breathing, death, heavens and paradises, mandala, mantra and yantra, Sufism, yoga, and Zen practice. There is also a detailed system of cross-references so that readers can explore related topics in the book, and suggestions for further reading for those who wish to pursue a subject in greater depth.
The Oxford Dictionary of World Religions is the definitive reference work on this subject, the most comprehensive and authoritative one-volume resource available. Now in an affordable paperback edition, it is the first place to turn for information on virtually any aspect of religion worldwide. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (7)

5-0 out of 5 stars A good reference
I am constantly doing research on the topic of religion and spirituality, I found I needed a dictionary of world religions as an easy reference, although I have others, this one I found to be less cumbersome and I find myself constantly referring to it, more so than the other dictionaries of religion that I have. I highly recommended.

Doron Alon
Author of "The Bible and the Law of Attraction"

5-0 out of 5 stars Best reference of its kind -for breadth
With a field of over 80 leading religion scholars working on and contributing 13,000 entries, generated from Oxford University Press and edited at the University of Pennsylvania, it's got to be pretty good.While every dictionary is going to have interesting flaws and idiosyncrasies - what do you need in a work of this kind?1) comprehensiveness 2) precision 3) ease of use.On all these counts, the Oxford meets or exceeds the criteria. For instance, there is an excellent, concise Topic Index, useful for double-checking whether the topic is covered - and the vast majority are.Best of all, it's pretty affordable. I teach religion, and it's been a great quick reference for me. For depth, however, one must go to the source. If you need a personal bookshelf general reference of religion, it doesn't get any better. Before buying, however, I would definitely heed the editorial reviews of the book.They point to a serious omissions - such as a complete lack of references regarding Native American and other indigenous religions. The Wade-Giles/Pin Yin Index with which the text ends seems an awkward bit of organization.Why not simply include the alternative transliteration in parenthesis with each entry? Further, there are a number of less expensive, more svelte, "concise" dictionaries of religion available. In fact, Oxford has produced a concise version of this one to compete in that market.Again, the most popular alternative, the Harper-Collins is a better exploratory browse.Still, the Oxford has packed an overwhelming amount of critical, and most commonly referenced material into a mere 1,111 pages.

Most reviews have described the Oxford Dictionary as comprehensive, as it indeed is.Almost everything connected to religion in any way seems to be in here, including topics of amazingly recent importance.It is most unlikely that anyone looking through this volume will fail to find what he's looking for.The book deserves several stars for this alone.

But the book is also a little strange, even weird, in other ways.For one thing, the editor has an obsession with genetics that shows up in most of the entries he has worked on.He sees us as beings whose moral behavior is guided entirely by our genetic code.The article on adultery for instance, ignored the matter of how different religions have viewed the issue, and instead explained it away as a system of genetic enhancement!The same can be said of many other entries.His beliefs may be correct, but does this belong in the dictionary?

I was also a bit troubled by the left-liberal bias that permeated the book.Authors choose to ignore conservative and even mainstream belief, and thus give misleading and incomplete information on their topics.We are not even told, for instance, about homosexual sin in Sodom and Gomorah.The author merely says the town was destroyed because of inhospitality!Explanations like this may be popular in some quarters, but fail to do justice to the subject.

5-0 out of 5 stars World Religions Dictionary
This book is necessary to all persons interested in the study of Religions. Gives to the reader the quick consultation needed when reading other text. It is a "Must Have it" in the library.

C. Giudici

5-0 out of 5 stars Many faces of faithful response
The 'Oxford Dictionary of World Religions' is a concise and comprehensive single-volume reference to the religions, faith systems, and spiritual practises of the world. This dictionary has one of the broadest ranges for any multi-religious guide around.The book contains nearly 13,000 entries, broadly categorised as follows:

- Religions
- Movements, sects, cults
- Scriptural and philosophical text synopses and analyses
- Biographies of individuals
- Sacred sites
- Customs and practises

- Ethics and moral systems
- Themes on general topics

Edited by John Bowker, the text is introduced by an essay which pulls together philosophical, sociological and historical information tying together the concepts of religion.'A strange thing about religion is that we all know what it is until someone ask us to tell them. As Augustine said of time, "What, then, is time? If no one asks me I know; but if I have to say what it is to one who asks, I know not." That has not stopped people trying to define religion, but their definitions are clearly different.'

Bowker, who has published several books including award winning books on the relationship of God and science, and the meaning of death in religious frameworks, has pulled together a team of over 80 contributors, some of the brightest names in the study of religion. Thus, articles and entries are contributed by experts in their respective fields, edited and cross-referenced by Bowker and his team of eight consultant editors who hold academic posts on three continents.

In an innovative fashion, Bowker has included a topical index in back which shows in an abbreviated and quickly-referenced fashion the interrelationship between topics; for instance, if one is using this text to research Anglicanism, in addition to such well-known entries such as Book of Common Prayer and Lambeth Conferences, one would be directed also to see the articles on:

African Greek Orthodox Church
Cambridge Platonists
Sundar Singh
Order of Ethiopia

This makes for interesting reading. Every now and then, an article will be surprising. If you want to research Wrathful Dieties, there is an article so entitled, which discusses both the specifics of events in scripture (God in Jewish, Christian, and Muslim scripture is sometimes shown as a wrathful and vengeful) and the general purpose behind the wrathful imagery (moral seriousness).

Also, if you want to know for certain what a Holy Fool is, here is the place! I confess I sometimes feel like a holy fool (as opposed to being more generally an unholy one), but this book has clarified this for me so that I no longer feel that way. According to the dictionary, holy fools are:'Figures who subvert prevailing orthodoxy and orthopraxis in order to point to the truth which lies beyond immediate conformity. The holy fool endeavours to express the insistence of all religions that detachment from the standards of the world is the sine qua non of advance into truth.'

Many of the articles contain suggestions for further reading, either specific titles or, more generally, authors of note on the topic in question.This is a great reference source, and one I have referenced frequently both in my studies and my personal researches. ... Read more

3. Dictionary of Philosophy of Religion
by Charles Taliaferro
Paperback: 288 Pages (2010-08-09)
list price: US$34.95 -- used & new: US$26.56
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1441111972
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Editorial Review

Product Description
This is an indispensable and comprehensive resource for students and scholars of philosophy of religion. "A Dictionary in Philosophy of Religion" is an indispensable source for students and scholars. Covering historical and contemporary figures, arguments, and terms, it offers an overview of the vital themes that make philosophy of religion the growing, vigorous field that it is today. In addition to the entries co-authored by Taliaferro and Marty, leading scholars in philosophy of religion have contributed to the Dictionary, including Brian Davies, Pamela Sue Anderson, Paul Draper, Jerry Walls, Paul Griffiths, Douglas Hedley, Dale Jacquette, and Victoria Harrison. The Dictionary includes a chronology, an extensive introduction to modern philosophy of religion, and a bibliography. It covers world religions and sources from east and west. Entries have been crafted for clarity, succinctness, and engagement. ... Read more

4. Pocket Dictionary of Apologetics & Philosophy of Religion: 300 Terms & Thinkers Clearly & Concisely Defined
by C. Stephen Evans
Paperback: 125 Pages (2002-01-04)
list price: US$8.00 -- used & new: US$2.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0830814655
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
For philosophers, the pursuit of truth travels on precise definitions. For Christian apologists, the defense of the faith is founded on the defining Word. And for beginning students of either discipline, the difference between success and frustration begins with understanding the terms and ideas and identifying the thinkers and movements.The Pocket Dictionary of Apologetics & Philosophy of Religion is designed to be a companion to your study of these two related disciplines. Among its 300 entries are

  • terms, from a posteriori to worldview
  • apologists, from Abelard to Van Til
  • philosophers of religion, from Alston to Wolterstorff
  • movements, from analytic philosophy to voluntarism
  • apologetic arguments, from the cosmological to the wager
  • theologies, from Arminianism to Zoroastrianism
Here is an affordable and easily accessible "help key" for your readings, lectures, writing assignments and exam preparation. It's a must-have study aid for any student who expects to cogitate on coherentism or ruminate on Ricouer. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

4-0 out of 5 stars Helpful tool
While this book does not have everything I need it is a pocket dictionary and I did not expect it to have everything I needed.There are a few things I think should have been in it that were not there which is why I gave it the 4 stars instead of 5. ... Read more

5. The Concise Dictionary of Religion
by Irving Hexham
Paperback: 248 Pages (1993-12-01)
list price: US$27.95 -- used & new: US$0.01
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1573831204
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Irving Hexham offers readers access to information on over 2,000 topics related to religion, including Christianity, Judaism, other major and minor religious traditions worldwide, cults, new religions, modern worldviews, and the contemporary study of religion. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

5-0 out of 5 stars Highly recommended!
This wonderful book in an excellent dictionary of religious words and phrases. In a remarkably short space, it defines the terms in a concise and highly informative way, often explaining how different groups differ on them. I have found that every word that I have been interested in is indeed covered in this book. I highly recommend this resource!

5-0 out of 5 stars Marvelous Reference for the Student of Religion
As a religious studies professor to undergraduate students, Irving Hexhamunderstands the sense of bewilderment that can accompany any study of theworld's religions.In this concise and helpful volume, he gives us shortinsights into an amazing array of topics: western religions, easternreligions, new religious movements, personalities, sacred texts, religiousideas and much more.If you seek depth, this is not the book for you.Butit is extremely useful if you need short descriptions to help you becomeoriented in topics you encounter while studying or reading.I use it oftento determine if a subject is something that I wish to pursue further inmore detailed texts. ... Read more

6. The HarperCollins Dictionary of Religion
by American Academy Of Religion
Hardcover: 1200 Pages (1995-12-01)
list price: US$49.95 -- used & new: US$12.40
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0060675152
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Led by general editor Jonathan Z. Smith, a team drawn from the American Academy of Religion has collected more than 3,200 entries written by 327 leading experts from around the world and across the theological and religious spectrum. The exceptional editorial team includes associate editor William Scott Green and area editors Jorunn Jacobsen Buckley, Lawrence S. Cunningham, Gary L. Ebersole, Malcom David Eckel, Sam D. Gill, Alfred Hiltebeitel, Richard C. Martin, Carole A. Myscofski, Jacob Neusner, and Hans H. Penner.

Designed for the general reader, this highly accessible resource addresses everything from the great living traditions such as Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism and Judaism to the very latest new religions. Diverse topics -- from the experience of women in Islam to the troublesome realities of religion and violence -- are covered with compelling facts and figures, eloquent prose, and riveting accuracy.

Have You Ever Wondered

  • What draws a person to alternative religious traditions? And what exactly is a "cult"?
  • What are the branches on the Jewish Chanukah menorah symbolize? And why bitter herbs are eaten at Passover?
  • Why children color eggs at Easter time? What a tree has to do with Christmas?
  • Why is there such a debate over the ordination of women in the Catholic Church?
  • If organized religion is necessary for a fulfilled humankind? How it all began, anyway?
  • All these questions and much, much more are answered in this essential and powerful new tool: The HarperCollins Dictionary of Religion -- the definitive guide to understanding religion today.

    ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (1)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good general reference on non-western religions
    Overall, the book provides a good general desk reference on religion, and is helpful in my field of religion reporting for newspapers. While it provides extensive coverage of non-Western religious traditions, however,it is somewhat lacking in its entries on American religious movements.There is no entry for the "chavurah" movement in Judaism, forexample, scant information about Charismatics and just a page and a halfabout Pentecostals, who represent the fastest growing branch ofChrisitianity in the world and seem to merit more space. Perhaps a futureedition could expand its coverage of these more mainstream movements. ... Read more

    7. Dictionary of Celtic Religion and Culture
    by Bernhard Maier
    Paperback: 352 Pages (2000-04-01)
    list price: US$47.95 -- used & new: US$41.71
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0851156606
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    Editorial Review

    Product Description
    The definitive reference work on this topic. `(The author takes) the Celtic world to include both the European continent and the more recent settlements in the British Isles. The entries, admirably broad in scope, conceive religion and culture as including not only the usual gods and myths but shamanic practices and totems. Maier also provides entries for important scholars of Celtic culture.' CHOICE ... Read more

    8. Encyclopedic Dictionary of Cults, Sects, and World Religions: Revised and Updated Edition
    by Larry A. Nichols, George Mather, Alvin J. Schmidt
    Hardcover: 544 Pages (2006-08-01)
    list price: US$35.99 -- used & new: US$19.22
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0310239540
    Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    Product Description
    Up-to-date, well-documented, comprehensive coverage of cults, sects, and world religions, from the historical to the contemporaryINCLUDES* Well-known groups and world religions, such as Jehovah's Witnesses, Mormons, Islam, and Baha'i* Groups with a significant North American influence, including Santeria, Rastafarians, Haitian Voodo, white supremacy groups, Wicca, and SatanismREVISED, UPDATED, AND EXPANDED TO INCLUDE NEW ENTRIES AND NEW INFORMATION* Updated information on Islam and its global impact* New entries: the Branch Davidians, Native American religions, Heaven's Gate, Aum Supreme Truth, the Boston Movement, the Masonic Lodge, and many others* Developments in the world of cults and the occultEncyclopedic Dictionary of Cults, Sects, and World Religions is arguably the most significant reference book on the subject to be published. Formerly titled Dictionary of Cults, Sects, Religions, and the Occult, it provides reliable information on the history and beliefs of nearly every form of religion active today. This extensively revised edition includes new topics, updated information, and a brand-new format for a clearer, more organized approach.The authors evaluate the beliefs and practices of each group from the perspective of the Bible and the historic creeds of the Christian church. You'll also find group histories, numerous illustrations, charts, current statistics, websites, bibliographies, and other useful information. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (6)

    1-0 out of 5 stars This Dictionary Rapes The Truth
    Most of us buy books to educate ourselves and NOBODY wants to spend time researching false facts that only make us grow more ignorant and misinformed. Yet that is exactly what this so-called dictionary attempts to do; promote ignorance and slanderous lies (when it's not simply providing partial truths).

    The authors clearly did NOT research the occult or much about the other religious groups they write about. Not only do they repeatedly credit Satanism for beliefs completely unrelated to that Sect, but they mutilate any respectable definition of the peace sign -- calling it the "Satanists Pentacle" (when penta is the prefix meaning "five" and there are no five points inside a peace sign).

    Regarding the Wiccan Rede -- the authors erroneously attribute it to Aleister Crowley who had NOTHING to do with either Wicca or with the Rede, as an ethical principle that's regularly drummed around many neo-pagan circles. Many would argue Crowley had nothing to do with ethics at all. In fact, he purported "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole law" (feel like having sex with your neighbor's infant? Do it!) while the Wiccan Rede states "An it harm none, do what ye will." The authors also falsely claim that Satanists follow the Rede, when they are not at all compelled by Wiccan dogma, but (according to the Satanist Bible) follow their own rules to do whatever's the OPPOSITE of Christianity.

    The two examples, provided above, are but the tip of the iceberg for how inaccurate is this dictionary. (I hope you find this review helpful/truthful because I utterly adore books and education and we'd all benefit from promoting intelligence instead of lies.)

    Best advice in regards to this "dictionary": Save your money. THESE GROSSLY IGNORANT PAGES ARE NOT FIT FOR THE BOTTOM OF THE BIRD CAGE.

    5-0 out of 5 stars That's Amazon
    Hey- ordering Amazon has a fantastic way of being proficient. It has been helpful and informative (the book that is).

    2-0 out of 5 stars Good cataloging, horrible interpretation
    Though commenting upon an array of religions, cults, and sects so great you could hardly ask for more, this book is crippled by its own bias.

    It is written from such a Christian-centered viewpoint that all non Judaic religions become horribly tainted. Just about everything, even religions such as Hinduism and Buddhism which pre-date Christianity, are compared extensively to the Christian faith. The trouble in this is, as any student of subaltern groups knows, that the reader cannot develop an organic understanding of a religion, but rather can only see religions as measured by the yardstick of Christianity.

    For example, the section on Buddhism is broken down into the following categories: History, Teachings, God, Sin, Salvation & the Future, Morality, and Conclusion. In every section except for History and Conclusion, Buddhism is compared to Christianity, even though Buddhism predates Jesus by hundreds of years. The authors do not even attempt to hide such bias, openly declaring that they will portray Buddhism only through Christian lenses on page 42.

    The section on Christianity itself is almost laughable. The masturbatory, emotive waxing on the noble history of Christianity (and its inherent correctness!) in the conclusion is hilariously sad. "Yet despite persecution, moral laxity, heresies challenging it both from within and without, the church of Jesus Christ prevails... It has experienced dark moments, but even as the darkness of the first Good Friday gave way to the brightness and splendor of the resurrection and the empty tomb, so too has the church experienced a glorious history with a future that will be brighter still when Jesus and the church - that is, when the bridegroom and the bride - unite forever." (Page 72)

    If you want a comprehensive list of religions, cults, and sects, this will do - but if you want to understand them and see them from a relatively neutral viewpoint, go elsewhere.

    P.S. Zoroastrianism doesn't have its own encyclopedic entry. Hello!? The People's Temple (the organization/cult of Jim "Purple Kool-Aid" Jones) which had perhaps 1000 members at its height gets its own section, but not a religion which heavily informed both Christianity and Islam and which still boasts 200,000 members world-wide today.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Unbiased?
    The book has alot of good information but they continually compare every religion or doctrine to their own obviously fundalmentalist Christian views. It gets a little old time after time reading how this organization is wrong because they're not the right kind of Christian.

    1-0 out of 5 stars Which Is the "Christian" Doctrine?
    Which Is the "Christian" Doctrine?

    Suppose for a moment that the Latter-day Saints were to take seriously the demand that they conform in every particular to "Christian" doctrine, and that they thenmade the attempt to do so. Having complied with such a demand, would theLatter-day Saints find themselves in total agreement with Protestants orwith Catholics? Would they believe in apostolic succession or in thepriesthood of all believers? Would they recognize an archbishop, apatriarch, a pope, a monarch, or no one at all as the head of Christ'schurch on earth? Would they be saved by grace alone, or would they find thesacraments of the church necessary for salvation? Would they believe infree will or in predestination? Would they practice water baptism? If so,would it be by immersion, sprinkling, or some other method? Would theybelieve in a substitutionary, representative, or exemplary atonement? Wouldthey or would they not believe in "original sin"? And on andon.

    It is unreasonable for other Christians to demand that Latter-daySaints conform to a single standard of "Christian" doctrine whenthey do not agree among themselves upon exactly what that standard is. Todo so is to establish a double standard; doctrinal diversity is toleratedin some churches, but not in others. The often-heard claim that all trueChristians share a common core of necessary Christian doctrine rests on thedubious proposition that all present differences between Christiandenominations are over purely secondary or even trivial matters-matters notcentral to Christian faith. This view is very difficult to defend in thelight of Christian history, and might be easier to accept if Protestantsand Catholics- or Protestants and Protestants, for that mat-ter-had notonce burned each other at the stake as non-Christian heretics over thesesame "trivial" differences. ... Read more

    9. The Concise Oxford Dictionary of World Religions (Oxford Paperback Reference)
    Paperback: 736 Pages (2005-06-02)
    list price: US$18.95 -- used & new: US$16.11
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 019861053X
    Average Customer Review: 2.5 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    Product Description
    Abridged from the acclaimed Oxford Dictionary of World Religions, this is the most comprehensive and up-to-date dictionary of religion available in paperback. Written by an expert team of contributors, the volume contains over 8,200 entries, an extensive topic index, and an original and in-depth introductory essay. The book is unparalleled in its coverage of all religions both past and present, studying themes such as asceticism, biogenetics, cosmology, and music and dance. Containing entries on religions, movements, sects, and cults, texts, individuals, sacred sites, customs, and ethics, this dictionary provides the most comprehensive and accessible reference available in paperback, indispensible for anyone interested in the world's many religions. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (2)

    1-0 out of 5 stars Authoritative, Unbiased...? NOT!
    I have searched for a straightforward, clear cut explanation of the world's major religions.Like many people, I tend to give weight to prestigious names like "Oxford" mistakenly believing that the name lends credibility and accuracy to the product.

    I am by no means a Holy Roller.I have problems with Christianity myself, but the anti-Christian rhetoric in the book is inescapable and vile.The author undoubtedly has an agenda and it's not to present a well balanced, unopinionated view of faiths in the world.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Darn good reference work!
    For pure bulk of information on anything and everything having to do with religion, this is the 800-lb. gorilla of dictionaries.

    There's just so much jammed into this small, yet thick dictionary.It's filled with so many tidbits and details about the world's major religions that (if you're interested) you'll keep turning page after page.Sometimes the multiple cross-references can overwhelm you, though.It would have been nice to have something to tie everything together; the information can be as diffuse as it is profuse.The dictionary presupposes one has some knowledge of the religions already.

    Regrettably, I noted that several definitions are shaded in a very snarky, mean way against the Roman Catholic Church.I cannot account for the negativity, but its presence is there . . . and, it doesn't occur for other Christian denominations or religions.

    Otherwise, a fine addition to anyone's library. ... Read more

    10. The Oxford Dictionary of the Jewish Religion
    Hardcover: 792 Pages (1997-03-13)
    list price: US$125.00 -- used & new: US$45.11
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0195086058
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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    This comprehensive dictionary of the Jewish religion contains nearly 2,400 alphabetically arranged entries ranging from short definitions to lengthy essays on major topics. It is the most accessible and complete one-volume resource available for information on the concepts, beliefs, and practices of historical and contemporary Jewish religious practice.

    The combined effort of Israeli, American, and European scholars, this dictionary reflects the great variety of Jewish religious expression, from the traditional approaches to such recent variations as Reform, Conservative, and Reconstructionist Judaism. It covers all aspects of Jewish practice, law, and theology as expressed in the Bible and the Talmud and by philosophers throughout history. The work also includes biographical sketches of important personalities associated with the development of the Jewish religion over the centuries, articles on the mystical tradition and folklore, and entries addressing the more recent religious issues posed by the existence of the State of Israel.

    Whether brief definitions, historical sketches, or explanatory essays, all entries in the dictionary are clearly and concisely written. All Hebrew words and phrases are defined for students and general readers. Numerous cross- references within the text are designed to lead users to entries on related subjects, and useful bibliographies are provided as aids to further reading and research. Offering comprehensive coverage in an easy-to-use format, The Oxford Dictionary of the Jewish Religion is the ideal introduction to the Jewish religion and an indispensable resource for students, scholars, and general readers. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (1)

    5-0 out of 5 stars An old standard favorite
    This dictionary is an old standard favorite which has been brought up to date. I believe the first edition of it was published in the sixties. It provided a great deal of basic knowledge of Judaism.
    It needs however to be supplemented by more intense study of particular entries, that is for anyone interested in knowing the subject in question, comprehensively. ... Read more

    11. The Continuum Dictionary of Religion
    Hardcover: 319 Pages (1994-02)
    list price: US$34.95 -- used & new: US$29.95
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    Asin: 0826406394
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    Concise definitions of over 5,000 terms drawn from conceptsin a wide range of religions, including Native American, African, ancient, and new religions. Among the entries are technical terms used in philosophy, sociology, and social anthropology in relation to religious thought or practice. Well c ... Read more

    12. Illustrated Dictionary of Religion: Figures, Festivals, and Beliefs of the World's Religions
    by Philip Wilkinson
    Paperback: 128 Pages (2006-09-18)
    list price: US$12.95 -- used & new: US$5.77
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 075662018X
    Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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    The Illustrated Dictionary of Religion explains, identifies, and compares the major religions of the world, from Zoroastrianism and ancient Egyptian rituals to Hinduism, Christianity, Islam, and Judaism. The easy to follow, accessible reference format makes answers easy to locate and understand. This is the perfect reference for any classroom or home library. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (1)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Great overview
    Wilkinson and DK have done a great job providing a basic overview of the world's major religions as well as a few smaller sects and more modern movements.The book is not comprehensive but is a great beginner's resource for those who want an overview without tons of detail to wade through.Lots of visuals and short blurbs of information hold my attention well.If you want an in-depth book that compares religions, get Huston Smith's World Religions.I'm using this book to teach a high school level class in World Religions and it is about perfect.For the cost, you won't regret buying this one. ... Read more

    13. Illustrated Dictionary of Religions
    by DK Publishing
    Hardcover: 128 Pages (1999-09-15)
    list price: US$25.00 -- used & new: US$17.27
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    Asin: 0789447118
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    In an easy to follow, accessible reference format, Illustrated Dictionary of Religions uses over 700 full-color illustrations and clear text to explain, identify, and compare the major religions of the world from Zoroastrianism and ancient Egyptian rituals to Hinduism, Christianity, Islam, and Judaism. The dictionary contains more than 1,000 entries and features double-page spreads on major figures and key events. Also, related entries are cross-referenced to show connections among religious concepts. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (6)

    4-0 out of 5 stars A great reference book on religions
    I refer often to this book to remind myself of the basic ideas of various religions and to review the meaning of words used.Other faiths are referred to often in today's world, and this book helps me to understand something about those faiths.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Is that a Tibetan Buddhist Prayer Wheel?
    The DK Illustrated Dictionary of Religions is an excellent visual reference guide to the world's religions, past and present.It provides wonderful images of religious objects, symbols, and figures accompanied by a detailed summary of the history, beliefs, myths, and practices of each religion.This book covers the big monotheistic religions like Christianity, Islam, and Judaism, as well as Hinduism, Buddhism, Confuscism, Native American shamanism, with an entire section on the anicent religions of the Egyptians, Greeks, Romans, and others.

    This book is fantastic in that even in it's brevity it is able to provide informative and interesting information on a variety of religious subjects and provide at least a cursory familiarity with the multitude of religious beliefs that have flurished over the ages.

    5-0 out of 5 stars great book with wicked illustrations
    this is a fantastic book!I'm doing a religious studies course, and this book really helped. With the awesome pictures, it helped to make sense of the confusing words with the pictures and symbols associated with them soit made more sense. It's really easy to read, and is great for anyone whowants to know about the worlds religions.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource for parents and children alike
    This is a really thorough, well-written book, and it gives a clear summary of just about all the major religions, from ancient Norse mythology to Rastafarianism. As both a Religious Studies student and a library clerk at a children's library, I would recommend this book as one of the best in thefield.

    4-0 out of 5 stars Excellent quick reference
    Illustrated Dictionary of Religions is a comprehensive, succinct, well illustrated quick reference for the student and layman both. ... Read more

    14. The Cambridge Dictionary of Christianity
    Paperback: 1304 Pages (2010-09-20)
    list price: US$39.99 -- used & new: US$27.25
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    Asin: 0521527856
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    The Cambridge Dictionary of Christianity is an authoritative reference guide that enables college and seminary students, their teachers, and Christian clergy to reflect critically upon all aspects of Christianity from its origins to the present day. Written by a team of 800 scholars and practitioners from around the world, the volume reflects the plurality of Christianity throughout its history. Key Features of The Cambridge Dictionary of Christianity:*Offers a presentation of the Christian beliefs and practices of all major Christian traditions in each continents and each nation*Highlights the different understandings of Christian beliefs and practices in different historical, cultural, religious, denominational, and secular contexts*Includes entries on methodology and the plurality of approaches that are used in the study of Christianity*Combines several approaches -- - including anthropological, cultural studies, ecumenical, and interfaith -- - to each Christian tradition*Respects each Christian tradition, through the self-presentation of Christianity in each country or Christian tradition *Includes clusters of entries on beliefs and practices, each presenting the understanding of a given Christian belief or practice in different historical and contemporary contexts*Demonstrates the relationship and interaction of Christianity with other religious traditions in various parts of the world*Provides a full bibliography on all topics covered in the volume ... Read more

    15. Dictionary of Roman Religion
    by Lesley Adkins, Roy A. Adkins
    Paperback: 304 Pages (2001-02-08)
    list price: US$40.00 -- used & new: US$21.05
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    Asin: 0195142330
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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    Long overshadowed by Greek mythology or treated peripherally in general texts on the ancient Roman world, Roman religion is finally accorded its due and set in its full context as no other reference source has done before. While perhaps most familiar in the context of Greek-influenced gods, Roman religious life in fact encompassed a tremendous variety of deities, rites, and belief systems.
    From the Celtic god Abandinus to the pagan historian Zosimus, Dictionary of Roman Religion contains more than 1,400 entries, covering topics such as festivals, sacrifices, temples, burial rites, deities and spirits, and historical religious events. The different religions are also covered: Mithraism, Druidism, Judaism, and Christianity, which were all part of the Roman religious world. Entries range from brief definitions to concise essays reflecting important aspects of religious practice, and most include suggestions for further reading in addition to a complete bibliography.
    Complete with illustrations and helpful cross-references, this dictionary is both comprehensive and essential for students and researchers. For those interested in ancient religions, myths and legends, Roman society, and classical studies, this dictionary is a welcome and novel edition to the vast library on ancient Roman life. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (1)

    5-0 out of 5 stars The best resourse on Roman Paganism in print!
    "The Dictionary of Roman Religion" is an absolute masterwork ofa resource book. Literally every important topic is covered here in greatdetail... pagan deities, rites, cults, religions, ritual tools, holy sites,priesthoods, festivals, famous individuals, etc. The best part is that thisbook covers far more than just Roman religion. The entries here in effectgive a clear picture of how religions interacted in the ancient world. Hereyou'll find deities that the Celts and Romans worshipped together,German-Roman temples, Graeco-Egyptian deities, etc. No matter what yourpersonal area of interest you will find useful material here. This is abook you'll refer back to constantly for information that is both conciseand complete. I've met at least a dozen people who own this book and all ofthem consider it the most helpful book on ancient religion they own ... Read more

    16. Abingdon Dictionary of Living Religions
    by Keith Crim
    Hardcover: 830 Pages (1981-12)
    list price: US$10.00
    Isbn: 9991435239
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    17. The Watkins Dictionary of Religions and Secular Faiths
    by Gerald Benedict
    Paperback: 708 Pages (2008-04-01)
    list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$6.01
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    Asin: 1905857527
    Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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    Faith is the cornerstone of societies throughout the world, and this unique dictionary presents an authoritative, extensive survey of both religious and secular philosophies. All the major religions and beliefs appear in this comprehensive compendium, along with the many denominations, cults, and sects emerging from them—all cross-referenced for easy searching. It also addresses religion’s debate with, and response to, secularism and secular systems such as deism, atheism, agnosticism, Utilitarianism, Darwinism, and Marxism.
    The work’s depth and breadth will inspire readers to reflect on fundamental questions about the nature of religion, its role in the formation of human society, how it has conditioned diverse cultures, and why, since the beginning of human history, it has provided a foundation for personal and social ethics.


    ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (1)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating but flawed
    A wide ranging treatment, with an astonishing 650 pages of entries authored by one person. A wry sense of humor is evident at times: the item on Mankind United, for example, ends with "Despite rumours, there is no evidence to suggest that the cult has re-emerged in the north of England, as Man United."

    This is the kind of reference work that is a delight to browse, as well as pull down from the shelf when you meet a new term. Unfortunately the proof reading is woeful. The entry on David Koresh's Branch Davidians consistently refers to them as Dravidians (something quite different), Calvinism is called a denomination, and the entry on B'nai Noah has Adam's son as Able rather than Abel.

    If you're willing to put up with the occasional clangers, this is a fascinating and approachable reference work. ... Read more

    18. The Oxford Dictionary of Classical Myth and Religion
    Hardcover: 640 Pages (2003-12-18)
    list price: US$45.00 -- used & new: US$12.24
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0192802887
    Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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    Drawn from the acclaimed Oxford Classical Dictionary, The Oxford Dictionary of Classical Myth and Religion offers a fully rounded guide to all aspects of religious life and thought in ancient Greece and Rome. Highly authoritative, this new book covers not only Greek mythologies and Roman festivals, but also devotes attention to topics such as Greek and Roman religious places, monuments, authors and texts, religious organization, imagery, divination, astrology, and magic. Unlike many other references on ancient Greece and Rome, the Dictionary also includes many entries on Judaism and Christianity in the classical world. The editors, area advisors for the third edition of the Oxford Classical Dictionary, have selected, revised, edited, and in some instances completely recast a large number of entries from the OCD to create this handy and accessible reference. The main text is supplemented by an important introductory essay providing overviews of mythology, religious pluralism in the ancient world, and the reception of myths from antiquity to the present. In addition to a helpful thematic index and extensive cross-references, the text is further supported by three maps and six genealogies. Backed by the authority and scholarly rigor of the renowned Oxford Classical Dictionary, The Oxford Dictionary of Classical Myth and Religion is a valuable A-Z reference and is as ideal a tool for students and teachers of ancient history as it is for all classics lovers. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (2)

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Oxford Dictionary of Classical Myth and Religion (Oxford Paperback Reference)
    Exelent for the novise. Very recomendeble

    5-0 out of 5 stars Useful Reference, Fascinating Read
    No doubt this book was intended as a reference work and will be used as such by those who purchase it, for the most part.But, being the rather rum fellow that I am, I read the book from cover to cover and must report that it makes a dashed good read, at least for the peculiar bunch who, like myself, enjoy reading through such compilations.Just one fascinating example:I should never have known, had I not read through the work, that, according to ancient folklore, "A man who sees them becomes possessed by nymphs.They punish unresponsive lovers...." or that "Around 400 BC inscriptions mention Archedemus from Thera....who withdrew to a cave to devote himself to a monklike worship of the Nymphs."Clearly, entries like these prove rich ground for pondering male/female relations.And this is just one example!The perfect book for the Classicist near you....or perhaps yourself. ... Read more

    19. Historical Dictionary of Medieval Philosophy and Theology (Historical Dictionaries of Religions, Philosophies and Movements)
    by Stephen F. Brown
    Hardcover: 464 Pages (2007-03-16)
    list price: US$108.90 -- used & new: US$67.47
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0810853264
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    20. Historical Dictionary of Jesus (Historical Dictionaries of Religions, Philosophies and Movements)
    by Daniel J. Harrington S.J.
    Hardcover: 206 Pages (2010-09-16)
    list price: US$70.00 -- used & new: US$53.50
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0810876671
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    Jesus of Nazareth is arguably the most famous and influential human being who has ever lived on earth. In the Historical Dictionary of Jesus, author Daniel J. Harrington delves into the ancient literary sources about Jesus, modern methods of approaching these sources, the major events in Jesus' life, persons and places associated with him, the form and content of his teachings, what can be said about his death and the claim that he was raised from the dead, and the contributions of major modern scholars to the quest of the historical Jesus.The book consists of three parts: an introduction to the major topics pertaining to Jesus as a historical figure; a cross-referenced dictionary containing 400 entries on a range of topics, including things Jesus did and said, ancient sources of historical data, and modern scholarship and interpretation; and a bibliography listing some of the most important books related to Jesus and the world in which he lived. This concise and objective reference work provides a clear and accurate introduction to the study of Jesus as a historical figure. ... Read more

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