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Banaras: CITY OF LIGHT [Kindle Edition]

Diana L. Eck
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $14.39
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

The sacred city of Banāras on the River Ganges is one of the oldest living cities in the world—as old as Jerusalem, Athens, and Peking. It is the place where Shiva, the Lord of All, is said to have made his permanent home since the dawn of creation. There are few cities in India as traditionally Hindu and as symbolic of the whole of Hindu culture as Banāras. In this eloquent, finely observed study, Diana Eck shows how the city over the centuries has become a lens through which the Hindu vision of the world is precisely focused.

She reveals the spiritual and historical resonance of this holy place where great sages such as the Buddha and Shankara were taught, where ashrams, palaces, and universities were built, where God has been imagined and imagined in a thousand ways. She describes the rites of its temples, the busy life of its riverfront, and the exuberance of its festivals. She tells how people travel from all over India to Banāras for the privilege of dying a good death here, for they believe that on the banks of the River Ganges where “the atmosphere of devotion is improbable in its strength,” it is possible to be released from the earthly round forever.

In her account of the sacred history, geography, and art of the city, its elaborate and thriving rituals, its myths and literature, and its importance to pilgrims and seekers, Diana Eck uses her wealth of scholarship to make the Hindu tradition come powerfully alive so that we come to understand the meaning of this sacred city to the millions of believers who have been coming here for over 2,500 years.


Product Details

  • File Size: 13680 KB
  • Print Length: 427 pages
  • Publisher: Knopf; 1st edition (June 5, 2013)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00CQZ5NXQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #839,311 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Illuminating Book April 16, 2004
Format:Hardcover
This book takes one on a breathtaking Odyssey through the sacred landscape of the world's oldest and most sacred city: Lord Siva's eternal abode. Eck's approach is sensitive and captivating, her scholarship is impressive, and the result of her labour has been a preciously insightful and informative book. Anyone seeking God owes it to himself to learn about the Holy City of Kashi, where death is transformed into divine liberation, and reading this book is an excellent way to get started. As both a Saiva and a scholar, I highly recommend it!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best Book on Banaras Bar-None October 30, 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Diana Eck is not only a brilliant scholar who writes with clarity and conciseness, but also an inspiring teacher who conveys her passion for Banaras in this wonderful book. I spent a month in the city, visiting sites and absorbing the culture presented in this indispensable volume and plan to spend another month soon following up on the never-ending richness of the Holy City. This is the one book I can recommend without reservation to anyone seeking an in-depth understanding of Hindu Gods and Siva's City of Light.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Must-read if you go to Varanasi September 26, 2014
Format:Kindle Edition
This is a must-read if you are heading for Varanasi. She goes into great detail about the the city and the traditions and culture of Varanasi. It is a book I've referred to again and again during my many visits to the city.

Diana Eck's insightful book is a great guide to help you discover so many of the wonderful temples, etc. in Varanasi. Don't go there without it!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars July 28, 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Great Experience!
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