Comparative Religion

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By Paul Waldau

A Communion of Subjects is the 1st comparative and interdisciplinary learn of the conceptualization of animals in global religions. students from a variety of disciplines, together with Thomas Berry (cultural history), Wendy Doniger (study of myth), Elizabeth Lawrence (veterinary drugs, ritual studies), Marc Bekoff (cognitive ethology), Marc Hauser (behavioral science), Steven clever (animals and law), Peter Singer (animals and ethics), and Jane Goodall (primatology) reflect on how significant spiritual traditions have included animals into their trust structures, myths, rituals, and paintings. Their findings provide profound insights into people' relationships with animals and a deeper realizing of the social and ecological net within which all of us live.

Contributors study Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Daoism, Confucianism, African religions, traditions from old Egypt and early China, and local American, indigenous Tibetan, and Australian Aboriginal traditions, between others. They discover matters akin to animal realization, anguish, sacrifice, and stewardship in leading edge methodological methods. in addition they handle modern demanding situations when it comes to legislations, biotechnology, social justice, and the surroundings. by way of grappling with the character and ideological beneficial properties of assorted non secular perspectives, the individuals solid non secular teachings and practices in a brand new mild. They show how we both deliberately or inadvertently marginalize "others," whether or not they are human or in a different way, reflecting at the ways that we assign price to dwelling beings.

Though it really is an old obstacle, the subject of "Religion and Animals" has but to be systematically studied via smooth students. This groundbreaking assortment takes the 1st steps towards a significant analysis.

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Extra resources for A Communion of Subjects: Animals in Religion, Science, and Ethics

Example text

The term animal will forever indicate an ensouled being. This interior world of the psyche, the anima, the soul, the spirit, or the mind provides the basis for that interior presence that we experience with each other throughout the world of the living. Simply in their physical dimensions things cannot occupy the same space while remaining their individual selves. This mutual indwelling in the same psychic space is a distinctive capacity of the transmaterial dimension of any living being. Not only can two psychic forms be present to each other in the same psychic space, but an unlimited number of forms can be present.

Religious traditions have, in fact, had impact in countless ways on how each human being now engages the worlds about us and amidst which we live. And animals, both human and nonhuman, are rich worlds unto themselves. The realm of ‘‘Religion and Animals,’’ whether as a personal inquiry or as an academic field, seeks the intersection of these worlds. Such attempts to engage the surrounding world are both ancient and new, reflecting humans’ constant urge to situate ourselves, our families, and our human, animal, and ecological communities.

This is a book about the religious implications of animal subjectivities. What if the world is indeed ‘‘a communion of subjects’’? What would that mean, and what would it require of us? Religious traditions have, in fact, had impact in countless ways on how each human being now engages the worlds about us and amidst which we live. And animals, both human and nonhuman, are rich worlds unto themselves. The realm of ‘‘Religion and Animals,’’ whether as a personal inquiry or as an academic field, seeks the intersection of these worlds.

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