Celibacy and religious traditions /

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Bibliographic Details
Imprint:New York : Oxford University Press, 2008.
Description:xiv, 321 p. ; 25 cm.
Subject:Sexual abstinence -- Religious aspects.
Sexual abstinence -- Religious aspects.
Format: E-Resource Print Book
URL for this record:http://pi.lib.uchicago.edu/1001/cat/bib/6644337
Hidden Bibliographic Details
Other authors / contributors:Olson, Carl.
ISBN:9780195306316 (cloth)
0195306317 (cloth)
9780195306323 (pbk.)
0195306325 (pbk.)
Notes:Includes bibliographical references and index.
Also available on the Internet.
Review by Choice Review

Fifteen scholars contributed 17 essays to this work edited by Olson (Allegheny College). They look at the role of celibacy across religious traditions and time periods. Thus material ranges from classical Hinduism and the Greco-Roman world to contemporary Protestantism. Celibacy, however, does not always mean permanent abstinence from sexual relations. In some traditions, such as Jainism, it denotes more a restraint of passions. In strands of the Hindu tradition, it points to an ideal for the ascetic life, the final stage of spiritual development. For some Protestants, celibacy points to refraining from sexual activity outside marriage. Some Muslim Sufis practiced celibacy as a form of protest. In the Taoist tradition, it emphasizes control of the body. The meaning of celibacy is thus fluid; yet however defined, it demonstrates that every religion recognizes the power of sexual urges, whether seen as good or evil, and struggles to give meaning to sexuality as a key element in what it means to be human. Those struggles continue today. Most writers offer fresh insight and thorough documentation. This book will be of particular interest to students and scholars in gender, sexuality, religious, and comparative cultural studies. Summing Up: Recommended. Lower-level undergraduates through faculty/researchers; general readers. C. H. Lippy formerly, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Copyright American Library Association, used with permission.
Review by Choice Review