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Becoming the Buddha: The Ritual of Image Consecration in Thailand (Buddhisms) Hardcover – February 15, 2004


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Editorial Reviews

Review

"Wide-ranging. . . . Although this study concentrates on one ritual in one region of Thailand, Donald K. Swearer extrapolates from the relatively small area of focus to illuminate a large area of debate."--Catherine Newell, Journal of the Siam Society

"A thorough and magisterial study. . . . This book will be essential reading for anyone interested in Buddhism, Buddhist 'theology,' images, and the material culture of religions."--John E. Cort, Religious Studies Review

From the Inside Flap

"In Becoming the Buddha Donald Swearer has provided a multifaceted historical, ethnographic, and comparative study of an image consecration ritual that lies close to the very heart of popular Buddhist piety. Drawing on more than four decades of textual research and field experience in northern Thailand, Swearer provides compelling descriptions and probing analyses that will command the attention of scholars in Buddhist studies and ritual studies for many years to come."--Frank Reynolds, co-translator of Three Worlds of King Ruang: A Thai Buddhist Cosmology

"Reading Becoming the Buddha was an exciting, note-taking, eye-opening experience that stimulated my thinking about the field and about my own work. This book is the product of a mature scholar whose many years in the field and whose prolific writings have made him one of the world's top authorities on Thai religion and culture, and yet it retains a freshness in the approach it takes, the topic it tackles, and the conclusions it upholds. There is nothing like it in print that I know of. I have every confidence that it will become, in a few years' time, a much referred to, often quoted, classic."--John S. Strong, Bates College, author of The Legend and Cult of Upagupta

"This is the first major book-length study of image consecration for Indian or Southeast Asian Buddhism that is accessible to a general readership. The scholarship behind it is enormous. Donald Swearer has collected a great range of texts and translated them adeptly while also incorporating ethnographic materials that are not only excellent but at times quite delightful."--Richard Davis, Bard College, author of Lives of Indian Images


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