The Routledge Handbook of South Asian Religions presents critical research, overviews, and case studies on religion in historical South Asia, in the seven nation states of contemporary South Asia: India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, Sri Lanka, and the Maldives, and in the South Asian diaspora.
Chapters by an international set of experts analyse formative developments, roots, changes and transformations, religious practices and ideas, identities, relations, territorialisation, and globalisation in historical and contemporary South Asia. The Handbook is divided into two parts which first analyse historical South Asian religions and their developments and second contemporary South Asia religions that are influenced by both religious pluralism and their close connection to nation states and their ideological power. Contributors argue that religion has been used as a tool for creating nations as well as majorities within those nations in South Asia, despite their enormous diversity, in particular religious diversity. The Handbook explores these diversities and tensions, historical developments, and the present situation across religious traditions by utilising an array of approaches and from the point of view of various academic disciplines.
Drawing together a remarkable collection of leading and emerging scholars, this handbook is an invaluable research tool and will be of interest to researchers and students in the fields of Asian religion, religion in context, and South Asian religions.
Table of Contents
Historical and Contemporary South Asian Religions
Knut A. Jacobsen
Part I Historical South Asian Religions: Formative developments
1 The Veda
Carlos A. Lopez
2 The rise of Classical Brahmanism
3 Identity in Early Indian Religion
4 Dharma in Classical Hinduism
David Brick and Donald R. Davis, Jr.
5 Reason, Dharma, and the discovery of Faith: Insights from the Modes of Classical Hinduism
6 From Yajña to Pūjā?
7 Early Pilgrimage Traditions in South Asia
Knut A. Jacobsen
8 Sri Lanka's Place in the History of South Asian Buddhism
9 The Place of Historical Nepal in the History of South Asian Religions
10 The Rise of Vaiṣṇava Devotion in North India: On the Origins of a Mughal Bhakti Sensibility
Patton E. Burchett
11 Nāth Saṃpradāya and the Formation of Haṭha Yoga Practices in India
12 Aurangzeb and Islam in India: 50 Years of Mughal Realpolitik
13 The Territorialisation of Sikh Pasts
Part II Contemporary South Asian Religions: Religious pluralism
14 Dalits and religion: Anti-caste Movements in India
15 The Betwixt and Between Religious Imaginary of Lāldās: Neither Here nor There
16 Conversion and Christian Relations with Non-Christians in South Asia
Chad M. Bauman
17 Science Sanskritised: How Modern Science Became a Handmaiden of Hindu Nationalism.
18 Religion and Society in Pakistan: From Pīr’s Domination to Individual Connected Piety
19 Religion and Society in Bangladesh: Unpacking the Multilayered Relationships
20 Religion and Society in Sri Lanka
21 Religion and Secularism in Contemporary Nepal
David N. Gellner and Chiara Letizia
22 The Transformation of Female Monastic Education in Contemporary Bhutan: If You Build Them, They Will Come
Dorji Gyeltshen and Manuel Lopez
23 Regressing for Progress: Maldives Embraces a Salafi Future
24 Festivals in South Asia: Celebrations of Local Communities
25 Indian Religions in the U.S.
26 The Global Manifestation of the Hindu Guru Phenomenon
Knut A. Jacobsen is Professor of Religion at the University of Bergen, Norway. His most recent book published by Routledge is Yoga in Modern Hinduism (2018) and the co-edited book Religion and Technology in India (2018), and he is the editor of the Routledge Handbook of Contemporary India (2016).