Choose one only. 400-600 words.

Option #1

The Point of the Legends

The details of Gautama’s life are entirely enshrouded in legend, and legend characteristically heavy with tendentious interpretation. Thus, for instance, the Four Passing Sights are rather spectacular, if somewhat obvious interpolations of doctrine. Similarly one might wonder the significance of the Gautama’s activities between the Great Going Forth and the Awakening. What’s the point, would you say?

Option #2

Harris and Eastern Religions

Apparently Sam Harris’ critique of religion is meant to be more harshly directed toward Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, than against Hinduism and Buddhism, true? How do you account for the fact that he seems so much more sympathetic to those “Eastern” religions, than to the great ‘Western” monotheisms?

Books

Cross-listed as RS 151

1.

Nine Theories of Religion

Author: Daniel L. Pals

ISBN:9780199859092

Publisher:Oxford University Press

2.

The World’s Religions

Author: Huston Smith

ISBN: 0061660183

Publisher: Harper (2009)

3.

The End of Faith

Author: Sam Harris

ISBN: 0393327655

Publisher: W. W. Norton (2005)

4.

A Short History of Myth

Author: Karen Armstrong

ISBN:978-1841958002

 
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