Buddhist Rituals of Death and Rebirth by Rita Langer
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Buddhist Rituals of Death and Rebirth
By Rita Langer

Buddhist Rituals of Death and Rebirth

Contemporary Sri Lankan Practice and Its Origins

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Format: Hardback

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Buddhist Rituals of Death and Rebirth by Rita Langer

Book Description

In Buddhist thought and practice, death has always been a central concept. This book provides a careful and thorough analysis of the rituals and social customs surrounding death in the Theravada tradition of Sri Lanka. Rita Langer describes the rituals of death and rebirth and investigates their ancient origins, analyzing social issues of the relationship between monks and lay people in this context. This aspect is of particular interest as death rituals are the only life cycle ritual in which Theravada Buddhist monks are actively involved. Drawing on early Vedic sutras and Pali texts as well as archaeological and epigraphical material, Buddhist Rituals of Death and Rebirth establishes that Sri Lankan rituals are deeply rooted in their pre-Buddhist, Vedic precursors. Whilst beliefs and doctrines have undergone considerable changes over the centuries, it becomes evident that the underlying practices have largely remained stable. The first comprehensive study of death rituals in Theravada Buddhist practice, this is an important contribution to the fields of Buddhist studies, indology, anthropology and religious studies.

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Book Details

ISBN: 9780415394963
ISBN-10: 0415394961
Format: Hardback
(234mm x 156mm x 19mm)
Pages: 256
Imprint: Routledge
Publisher: Taylor & Francis Ltd
Publish Date: 16-Jul-2007
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

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Author Biography - Rita Langer

Rita Langer is currently Research Fellow in Buddhist Studies at the University of Bristol, UK. Focusing on Southeast Asia (Thailand and Laos), she is continuing her research into Theravada death rituals as part of a larger AHRC funded project, 'Buddhist Death Rituals of Southeast Asia and China'.

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