Friday, July 07, 2006
The Axial Age (approx. 900-200 BC) saw the development of the major modern religions (the two biggest faiths of course grew later out of Axial Judaism). In The Great Transformation, Karen Armstrong explores the evolution of these religious systems in their cultural and historical contexts. Each chapter moves between Israel, India, China, and Greece, examining the varities of religious expression, the foci of ritual behavior, and the societal turmoil out of which mythic traditions sprang. This is by no means a beach read, but Armstrong is clear and writes elegantly and presents an enormous amount of material in easily digestible chunks. Definitely worth the time. Perhaps I'll check out her others.
I had to run up to B&N today to get some more books. What a shit-hole. Half the titles are mis-shelved by title instead of author.