IMAGES AND SYMBOLS: Studies in Religious Symbolism by Mircea Kilade

IMAGES AND SYMBOLS: Studies in Religious Symbolism

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KIRKUS REVIEW

This erudite approach to religious symbolism is the work of one of today's foremost students of comparative religion. Mircea Fliade, a professor of the history of religions at the University of Chicago, is the author of Birth and Rebirth, Patterns in Comparative Religion, and Myth of the Eternal Return. In his foreword the author states that it is primarily with the psychologists and literary critics in mind that he has published his book, believing as he does that the study of symbolism concerns, at least indirectly, the knowledge of man himself. Images, symbols and myths are not irresponsible creations of the psyche, they respond to a need and fulfill a function, that of bringing to light the most hidden modalities of being. Dividing his subject matter into five chapters the author begins by exploring the symbolism of the ""Centre"", and indicates the relations between psychology and the history of religions. The second chapter analyzes the symbolism of Time and the ""going out of time"" in ancient India. The symbolism of Knots upon two complimentary planes and the study of associated symbols, is discussed in chapters three and four, while the final chapter offers a resume of the findings of all these inquiries from different standpoints. Scholars and students should hail this book as a unique contribution which brings new light to bear upon symbolic thinking which is consubstantial with human existence.

Pub Date: May 24th, 1961
Publisher: Sheed & Ward