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BILL MOYERS: THE WISDOM OF FAITH WITH HUSTON SMITH
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“Thoughtful and absorbing” —The New York Times
“Spiritual travelogue” —Newsweek
A revealing exploration of world religions
All religions, at their core, are the same: this remarkable claim is made by Huston Smith, bestselling author and former professor of comparative religion at Syracuse University, MIT, and the University of California, Berkeley. Raised by Christian missionaries, Smith also practices yoga, embraced his daughter’s conversion to Judaism, and, for a decade, adopted the Islamic tradition of praying five times a day. He has traveled around the world, visiting ashrams and temples, synagogues and mosques, zen masters and swamis.
His book The World’s Religions has sold more than 2 ½ million copies worldwide since 1958, and is considered one of the defining treatises on the subject. In this series of conversations with renowned journalist Bill Moyers, Smith provides thoughtful insights into the world’s largest religions--Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Christianity, Judaism, and Islam--and how, taken at their best, they provide universal truths that unite and define the human spirit.
Emmy® nominated for outstanding interview program
12-page viewer’s guide with an examination of god in different religions and articles on religious rules, the concept of service, and the Architecture of Faith
Biographies of Huston Smith and Bill Moyers and a gallery of religious iconography
Plus an article on miracles and discussion questions at athenalearning.com
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Top Customer Reviews
The series comes from Athena, a 'learning' publisher, in a two-disc set that presents five episodes that unroll in some 275 minutes. It is produced in color and stereo sound and there are subtitles for the hearing impaired. The set includes a twelve page viewer's guide that very briefly summarizes the series. The guiding question is 'what is the nature of the divine?'. Answers are sought by examining Buddhism, a faith with no specific deities, and moves on to discuss Christianity, with its faith organized around one Creator (in three forms). It then moves on to explore Confucianism from the perspective that its faithful 'buy into' an all-encompassing way of life. As a contrast, the next program discusses Hinduism, with its large pantheon of Gods and Goddesses, stressing that this multiplicity can also be seen as different iterations of one universal spirit, Brahman the World Soul. Next up is Islam, with its emphasis on one Creator and the individual's duty to 'surrender' or to follow the one true path as revealed by Jewish prophets, including Jesus of Nazareth, and by Mohammed. The final section of the series deals with 'the architecture of faith', which is to say it deals with the buildings that the faithful have developed over time as sacred spaces in which to demonstrate their devotion to their faith and its rituals.
For me, all of these topics are important and they are all well done in terms of serious discussion or exposition, aided by visual materials. This is one of the most important series done in my lifetime for the enlightenment of the faithful of many religions.