restricted access Preface to the Third Edition
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xiii Preface to the Third Edition The Survey of Hinduism in its preceding two editions has gained wide acceptance and has received much encouraging comment in scholarly reviews. It was especially gratifying for me to see it appreciated by Hindu students and scholars —a token for the fulfilment of my ambition to present Hinduism in such a way that Hindus would recognize their own traditions in it. Many of the suggestions of reviewers have been taken up and incorporated in this new edition. While most of the structure and content of the previous edition has been left unchanged, except for some updating, adding, and correcting, a number of new chapters have been added: the first chapter deals in more detail with the current controversy concerning the beginnings of Hinduism and takes a more decisive stand on it in the light of recent research. Chapters have been added on the relationship of Hinduism with the three major non-Hindu religions with substantial followings in India: Buddhism, Christianity, and Islam. A new section has been added, dealing with issues that are important but that did not fit into the preceding sections such as the history of the relationship of India with the West, the accomplishments of Hindus in the sciences, Hinduism and Ecology, Indian measures of time, including the Calendar, and an extended chronology. India is fast emerging as a modern economic and military superpower and its popular culture, represented prominently by the colorful creations of Bollywood , is attracting more and more fans across the globe. Interest in its rich traditional culture, its philosophy, and spirituality is growing worldwide too. India is the only major modern country that in its contemporary culture has preserved a substantial part of its ancient cultural traditions, a heritage that will prove an invaluable contribution also to our emerging global culture. The author is grateful to State University of New York Press for the opportunity of bringing out a new revised and enlarged edition of the Survey and wishes to express his thanks to its dedicated staff for the care taken in the production. He also expresses his appreciation to Canada Council for continued support. This page intentionally left blank. ...