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The Future of Mainline Protestantism in America

by James Hudnut-Beumler & Mark Silk Columbia University Press (January 09, 2018)

As recently as the 1960s, more than half of all American adults belonged to just a handful of mainline Protestant denominations—Presbyterian, UCC, Disciples of Christ, Episcopal, Lutheran, Methodist, and American...

Faithful to Secularism

by David T. Buckley Columbia University Press (March 14, 2017)

Religion and democracy can make tense bedfellows. Secular elites may view religious movements as conflict-prone and incapable of compromise, while religious actors may fear that anticlericalism will drive religion...

Dying: What Happens When We Die?: A Selection from Waking, Dreaming, Being: Self and Consciousness in Neuroscience, Meditation, and Philosophy

by Evan Thompson Columbia University Press (September 02, 2014)

In the ancient Indian epic, Mahabharata, the Lord of Death asks, “What is the most wondrous thing in the world?”, and his son answers, “It is that all around us people can be dying and we don’t believe...

Religion Within Reason

by Steven M. Cahn Columbia University Press (March 14, 2017)

In the views of most believers and critics, religion is essentially connected to the existence of a supernatural deity. If supernaturalism is not reasonable, the argument goes, religion cannot be reasonable,...

Love Letters from Golok

by Holly Gayley Columbia University Press (November 15, 2016)

Love Letters from Golok chronicles the courtship between two Buddhist tantric masters, Tare Lhamo (1938–2002) and Namtrul Rinpoche (1944–2011), and their passion for reinvigorating Buddhism in eastern Tibet...

Buddhism and Medicine

by C. Pierce Salguero Columbia University Press (September 26, 2017)

From its earliest days, Buddhism has been closely intertwined with medicine. Buddhism and Medicine is a singular collection showcasing the generative relationship and mutual influence between these fields across...

A Dharma Reader: Classical Indian Law

by Patrick Olivelle Columbia University Press (October 25, 2016)

Whether defined by family, lineage, caste, professional or religious association, village, or region, India’s diverse groups did settle on an abstract concept of law in classical times. How did they reach...

The Miracle Myth

by Lawrence Shapiro Columbia University Press (August 30, 2016)

There are many who believe Moses parted the Red Sea and Jesus came back from the dead. Others are certain that exorcisms occur, ghosts haunt attics, and the blessed can cure the terminally ill. Though extraordinarily...

Jews and the American Religious Landscape

by Uzi Rebhun Columbia University Press (September 06, 2016)

Jews and the American Religious Landscape explores major, complementary facets of American Judaism and Jewish life through a comprehensive analysis of contemporary demographic data. Focusing on the most important...

The Origins of Neoliberalism: Modeling the Economy from Jesus to Foucault

by Dotan Leshem Columbia University Press (May 24, 2016)

Dotan Leshem recasts the history of the West from an economic perspective, bringing politics, philosophy, and economics closer together and revealing the significant role of Christian theology in shaping economic...

Altered States: Buddhism and Psychedelic Spirituality in America

by Douglas Osto Columbia University Press (April 26, 2016)

In the 1950s and 1960s, Americans combined psychedelics with Buddhist meditation to achieve direct experience through altered states of consciousness. As some practitioners became more committed to Buddhism,...


by Nadia Marzouki, C. Jon Delogu & Olivier Roy Columbia University Press (April 04, 2017)

The practice of Islam in the United States, spanning more than a century, has a contentious history that has escalated over the past decade. Debates have raged over Islam’s articles of faith, especially within...

Death and Mastery

by Benjamin Y. Fong Columbia University Press (November 08, 2016)

The first philosophers of the Frankfurt School famously turned to the psychoanalytic theories of Sigmund Freud to supplement their Marxist analyses of ideological subjectification. Since the collapse of their...

The Gathering of Intentions: A History of a Tibetan Tantra

by Jacob P. Dalton Columbia University Press (March 29, 2016)

This unique study reads a single Tibetan Buddhist ritual system through the movements of Tibetan history, revealing the social and material dimensions of a seemingly timeless tradition. By subjecting tantric...

China's Green Religion

by James Miller Columbia University Press (May 16, 2017)

How can Daoism, China’s indigenous religion, give us the aesthetic, ethical, political, and spiritual tools to address the root causes of our ecological crisis and construct a sustainable future? In China’s...

The Quotidian Revolution: Vernacularization, Religion, and the Premodern Public Sphere in India

by Christian Lee Novetzke Columbia University Press (October 11, 2016)

In thirteenth-century Maharashtra, a new vernacular literature emerged to challenge the hegemony of Sanskrit, a language largely restricted to men of high caste. In a vivid and accessible idiom, this new Marathi...

Race and Secularism in America

by Jonathon S. Kahn & Vincent W. Lloyd Columbia University Press (March 01, 2016)

This anthology draws bold comparisons between secularist strategies to contain, privatize, and discipline religion and the treatment of racialized subjects by the American state. Specializing in history, literature,...

Friends and Other Strangers: Studies in Religion, Ethics, and Culture

by Richard B. Miller Columbia University Press (July 05, 2016)

Richard B. Miller aims to stimulate new work in religious ethics through discussions of ethnography, ethnocentrism, relativism, and moral criticism; the ethics of empathy; the meaning of moral responsibility...

The Sensual God: How the Senses Make the Almighty Senseless

by Aviad M. Kleinberg Columbia University Press (September 08, 2015)

In the Old Testament, God wrestles with a man (and loses). In the Talmud, God wriggles his toes to make thunder and takes human form to shave the king of Assyria. In the New Testament, God is made flesh and...

Calypso Jews: Jewishness in the Caribbean Literary Imagination

by Sarah Phillips Casteel Columbia University Press (January 12, 2016)

With what may seem surprising frequency, Caribbean writers have turned to Jewish Caribbean experiences of exodus and reinvention, from the arrival of Sephardic Jews expelled from Spain and Portugal in the 1490s...

Sacred Knowledge: Psychedelics and Religious Experiences

by William A. Richards Columbia University Press (December 08, 2015)

In the early 1960s, scientists openly advocated for experimentation with psychedelics. This effort, however, quickly turned into a discredited enterprise involving recreational drug use. But what if a study...

Who Made Early Christianity?: The Jewish Lives of the Apostle Paul

by John G. Gager, Jr. Columbia University Press (June 16, 2015)

In this philosophical and theological study, John Gager undermines the Apostle Paul’s rejection of Judaism, conversion to Christianity, and founding of Christian anti-Judaism. Through meticulous research and...

A None's Story: Searching for Meaning Inside Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism, and Islam

by Corinna Nicolaou Columbia University Press (March 29, 2016)

The rising population known as “nones” for its members’ lack of religious affiliation is changing American society, politics, and culture. Many nones believe in God and even visit places of worship, but...

Force of God: Political Theology and the Crisis of Liberal Democracy

by Carl A. Raschke Columbia University Press (August 11, 2015)

For theorists in search of a political theology that is more responsive to the challenges now facing western democracies, this book tenders a new political economy anchored in a theory of value. The political...

The Silent Qur'an and the Speaking Qur'an: Scriptural Sources of Islam Between History and Fervor

by Mohammad Ali Amir-Moezzi & Eric Ormsby Columbia University Press (December 08, 2015)

Two major events occurred in the early centuries of Islam that determined its historical and spiritual development in the centuries that followed: the formation of the sacred scriptures, namely the Qur’an...

Signs and Wonders: Theology After Modernity

by Ellen T. Armour Columbia University Press (March 15, 2016)

We are told modernity's end will destabilize familiar ways of knowing, doing, and being, but are these changes we should dread—or celebrate? Four significant events (and the iconic images that represent them)...

Gray Sabbath: Jesus People USA, Evangelical Left, and the Evolution of Christian Rock

by Shawn David Young Columbia University Press (August 11, 2015)

Formed in 1972, Jesus People USA is an evangelical Christian community that fundamentally transformed the American Christian music industry and the practice of American evangelicalism, which continues to evolve...

Spreading Buddha's Word in East Asia: The Formation and Transformation of the Chinese Buddhist Canon

by Jiang Wu & Lucille Chia Columbia University Press (December 08, 2015)

A monumental work in the history of religion, the history of the book, the study of politics, and bibliographical research, this volume follows the making of the Chinese Buddhist canon from the fourth century...

Reading the Mahavamsa: The Literary Aims of a Theravada Buddhist History

by Kristin Scheible Columbia University Press (November 01, 2016)

Vam?sa is a dynamic genre of Buddhist history filled with otherworldly characters and the exploits of real-life heroes. These narratives collapse the temporal distance between Buddha and the reader, building...

Paul's Summons to Messianic Life: Political Theology and the Coming Awakening

by L. L. Welborn Columbia University Press (April 28, 2015)

Taubes, Badiou, Agamben, Žižek, Reinhard, and Santner have found in the Apostle Paul’s emphasis on neighbor-love a positive paradigm for politics. By thoroughly reexamining Pauline eschatology, L. L. Welborn...

Cloud of the Impossible: Negative Theology and Planetary Entanglement

by Catherine Keller Columbia University Press (December 02, 2014)

What generates the cloud of the impossible is what becomes possible in the very face of what appears to be impossible, whether it be radical democracy or the reversal of climate change. The experience of the...

Why We Dance: A Philosophy of Bodily Becoming

by Kimerer L. LaMothe Columbia University Press (March 31, 2015)

Within intellectual paradigms that privilege mind over matter, dance has long appeared as a marginal, derivative, or primitive art. Drawing support from theorists and artists who embrace matter as dynamic and...

Excellent Beauty: The Naturalness of Religion and the Unnaturalness of the World

by Eric Dietrich Columbia University Press (June 09, 2015)

Flipping convention on its head, Eric Dietrich argues that science uncovers awe-inspiring, enduring mysteries, while religion, regarded as the source for such mysteries, is a biological phenomenon. Just like...

The Gnostic New Age

by April D. DeConick Columbia University Press (September 27, 2016)

Gnosticism is a heretical tradition that revolutionized the practice of Christianity. Before Gnosticism emerged in the second century, passage to the afterlife required obedience to God and king. Gnosticism...

Realizing Awakened Consciousness: Interviews with Buddhist Teachers and a New Perspective on the Mind

by Richard P. Boyle Columbia University Press (June 02, 2015)

If, as Buddhism claims, the potential for awakening exists in all human beings, we should be able to map the phenomenon with the same science we apply to other forms of consciousness. A student of cognitive...

Record of Daily Knowledge and Collected Poems and Essays: Selections

by Yanwu Gu & Ian Johnston Columbia University Press (November 08, 2016)

Gu Yanwu pioneered the late-Ming and early Qing-era practice of Han Learning, or Evidential Learning, favoring practical over theoretical approaches to knowledge. He strongly encouraged scholars to return to...

The Science of Chinese Buddhism: Early Twentieth-Century Engagements

by Erik J. Hammerstrom Columbia University Press (August 11, 2015)

Kexue, or science, captured the Chinese imagination in the early twentieth century, promising new knowledge about the world and a dynamic path to prosperity. Chinese Buddhists particularly embraced scientific...

Choreographies of Shared Sacred Sites: Religion, Politics, and Conflict Resolution

by Elazar Barkan & Karen Barkey Columbia University Press (November 11, 2014)

This anthology explores the dynamics of shared religious sites in Turkey, the Balkans, Palestine/Israel, Cyprus, and Algeria, indicating where local and national stakeholders maneuver between competition and...

Emperor Wu Zhao and Her Pantheon of Devis, Divinities, and Dynastic Mothers

by N. Harry Rothschild Columbia University Press (June 16, 2015)

Wu Zhao (624–705), better known as Wu Zetian or Empress Wu, is the only woman to have ruled China over the course of its 5,000-year history. How did she rise to power, and why was she never overthrown? Exploring...

Nietzsche Versus Paul

by Abed Azzam Columbia University Press (March 10, 2015)

Abed Azzam offers a fresh interpretation of Nietzsche’s engagement with the work of Paul the Apostle, reorienting the relationship between the two thinkers while embedding modern philosophy within early Christian...

Deathpower: Buddhism's Ritual Imagination in Cambodia

by Erik W. Davis Columbia University Press (December 08, 2015)

Drawing on extensive ethnographic fieldwork in Cambodia, Erik W. Davis radically recasts attitudes toward the nature of Southeast Asian Buddhism’s interactions with local religious practice and, by extension,...

The Bhagavata Purana: Sacred Text and Living Tradition

by Ravi M. Gupta & Kenneth R. Valpey Columbia University Press (October 25, 2016)

A vibrant example of living literature, the Bhagavata Purana is a versatile Hindu sacred text written in Sanskrit verse. Finding its present form by the tenth century C.E., the work inspired several major north...

Religion, Secularism, and Constitutional Democracy

by Jean L. Cohen & Cécile Laborde Columbia University Press (December 22, 2015)

Polarization between political religionists and militant secularists on both sides of the Atlantic is on the rise. Critically engaging with traditional secularism and religious accommodationism, this collection...

The Dalai Lama and the Emperor of China: A Political History of the Tibetan Institution of Reincarnation

by Peter Schwieger Columbia University Press (March 31, 2015)

A major new work in modern Tibetan history, this book follows the evolution of Tibetan Buddhism’s trülku (reincarnation) tradition from the seventeenth to the nineteenth centuries, along with the Emperor...

Paving the Great Way: Vasubandhu's Unifying Buddhist Philosophy

by Jonathan C. Gold Columbia University Press (November 11, 2014)

The Indian Buddhist philosopher Vasubandhu (fourth–fifth century C.E.) is known for his critical contribution to Buddhist Abhidharma thought, his turn to the Mahayana tradition, and his concise, influential...

Rawls and Religion

by Tom Bailey & Valentina Gentile Columbia University Press (December 23, 2014)

John Rawls’s influential theory of justice and public reason has often been thought to exclude religion from politics, out of fear of its illiberal and destabilizing potentials. It has therefore been criticized...

Christ Without Adam: Subjectivity and Sexual Difference in the Philosophers' Paul

by Benjamin H. Dunning Columbia University Press (April 15, 2014)

The apostle Paul deals extensively with gender, embodiment, and desire in his authentic letters, yet many of the contemporary philosophers interested in his work downplay these aspects of his thought. Christ...

The Question of the Animal and Religion: Theoretical Stakes, Practical Implications

by Aaron S. Gross Columbia University Press (December 02, 2014)

Through an absorbing investigation into recent, high-profile scandals involving one of the largest kosher slaughterhouses in the world, located unexpectedly in Postville, Iowa, Aaron S. Gross makes a powerful...

Christo-Fiction: The Ruins of Athens and Jerusalem

by Robin Mackay Columbia University Press (April 28, 2015)

François Laruelle’s lifelong project of “nonphilosophy,” or “nonstandard philosophy,” thinks past the theoretical limits of Western philosophy to realize new relations between religion, science, politics,...

Blood: A Critique of Christianity

by Gil Anidjar Columbia University Press (April 29, 2014)

Blood, according to Gil Anidjar, maps the singular history of Christianity. As a category for historical analysis, blood can be seen through its literal and metaphorical uses as determining, sometimes even defining...