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The subject of Comparative Religion as a scientific study of the various features of the different religions of the world in a comparative perspective is relatively a late development. It is hardly for a hundred years or so that the name Comparative Religion has gained currency and studies in this direction have been taken up in right earnest. Such a study requires an impartial, neutral and tolerant outlook and if at all there is any leaning or sympathy for any religion, it must be for religions other than one is own. Here the whole question regarding the methodology of a comparative study of religions may come up. We may see that at least two things seem necessary (though not sufficient) for collecting relevant materials which will make our study faithful and authentic: A thorough study of the basic text or texts, along with the related works, belonging to a particular religion and an extensive dialogue with the followers of a particular religion along with a personal survey, both intensive and extensive, of the various religious practices carried on by them. The first one is easy to carry out. Perhaps most of the writers on comparative religion adopt this way. But adopting the second one in a serious and sincere spirit is not an easy task and therefore very few or hardly any adopt this method for studying religions. The aim of a study like this is partly to acquaint readers with the main aspects and features of the living religions of the world and partly to suggest the points of agreement and difference among the different religions.
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