A NEW YORK TIMES NOTABLE BOOK
ONE OF THE CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR'S BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR
The significance of scripture may not be immediately obvious in our secular world, but its misunderstanding is perhaps the root cause of many of today's controversies. The sacred texts have been co-opted by fundamentalists, who insist that they must be taken literally, and by others who interpret scripture to bolster their own prejudices. These texts are seen to prescribe ethical norms and codes of behavior that are divinely ordained: they are believed to contain eternal truths. But as Karen Armstrong shows in this chronicle of the development and significance of major religions, such a narrow, peculiar reading of scripture is a relatively recent, modern phenomenon. For most of their history, the world's religious traditions have regarded these texts as tools that enable the individual to connect with the divine, to experience a different level of consciousness, and to help them engage with the world in more meaningful and compassionate ways.
At a time of intolerance and mutual incomprehension, The Lost Art of Scripture shines fresh light on the world's major religions to help us build bridges between faiths and rediscover a creative and spiritual engagement with holy texts.
Karen Armstrong, geboren 1945 in der Nähe von Birmingham, England, war sieben Jahre lang katholische Nonne, bevor sie 1969 ihren Orden verließ und nach Oxford ging. Die international anerkannte Religionswissenschaftlerin verfasste zahlreiche Bücher zu den wichtigsten Weltreligionen. 'The Battle for God' stand in den USA und Großbritannien monatelang auf den Bestsellerlisten. Armstrong lehrt am Leo Baeck College for the Study of Judaism und wurde 1999 mit dem Muslim Public Affairs Council Media Award ausgezeichnet.