World Philosophies is a comprehensive survey of the world's philosophical and religious traditions by one of our foremost religious thinkers. Ninian Smart discusses notable figures such as Plato and Kierkegaard in the West, the Buddha and Mao Zedong in Asia, Tempels and Knibanga in Africa, and Rodo and Royce in America. Covering a wide range of topics including Indian ideas of testimony and evidence, Chinese notions of moral development, Buddhist concepts of cosmology and Latin American critiques of materialism, Smart sheds (...) new light on the astonishing diversity of philosophies that have developed throughout history. (shrink)
The pursuit of linguistic analysis should mean that philosophers pay attention to the facts: in particular, the philosophy of religion cannot ignore the comparative study of religion, social anthropology, etc. A main aim should be to discover a ?grammar? of religious experience, which may help to illuminate the reasons for certain patterns of religious belief, etc. Here it is necessary to resist the functionalist views of some social anthropologists, stemming from the conviction that religion is an illusion and from a (...) conflation of reasons and causes. But in so far as a functionalist approach applies, it can help to exhibit the accidental and ?non?religious? features of a given religion. (shrink)
Smart argues that saw ("british journal of aesthetics", Vol. I, 2) has given an account of the subject-Matter of aesthetics which is too general. It allows that the playing and watching of some games are aesthetic phenomena. Saw admits that there are aesthetic elements involved in these cases, But she claims that in enjoying these aspects of games one is not enjoying the game as such. (staff).