"Arvind Sharma has a charming ability to simultaneously recollect his encounters with other religions from an initially naïve viewpoint and also reflect upon them from his by now very well-informed perspective as one of the world's great scholars of comparative religion. Narrating his voyage of discovery with disarming humor, he leads us through all the minefields of differing beliefs and practices in ways that expose and then tend to dissipate misunderstandings of religion--both our own and others'." --Mary Pat Fisher, author of Living Religions
From the Back Cover
One Religion Too Many
is a Hindu pilgrim's progress through the world's religious traditions. An eminent scholar of comparative religion, Arvind Sharma provides a firsthand account of how he came to be a party to the dialogue of religions--first with his own religion, then with the comparative study of religion, and finally with the religious universalism he has come to espouse because of this heritage. Starting with an account of the Hinduism of his family in Varanasi, India, Sharma then heads west, finding himself initially dumbfounded by the Christian Eucharist, wondering if there is a "Hinjew connection," grappling with Zen in Massachusetts, and pressed into service to teach about Islam. Sharma writes with a light touch, but even when his encounters and perceptions are amusing, they are always insightful and thought provoking. Western readers, in particular, will enjoy seeing their own traditions through the eyes of an Easterner who has come to know them well. Sharma's ultimate perspective on religious universalism is a welcoming vision for the globalizing world of the twenty-first century.