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CompleteMartialArts.com - The Sword and the Flute--Kali and Krsna: Dark Visions of the Terrible and the Sublime in Hindu Mythology (Hermeneutics: Studies in the History of Religions)


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Manufacturer: University of California Press
Average Customer Rating: Average rating of 5.0/5Average rating of 5.0/5Average rating of 5.0/5Average rating of 5.0/5Average rating of 5.0/5

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Binding: Paperback
Dewey Decimal Number: 300
EAN: 9780520035102
ISBN: 0520035100
Label: University of California Press
Manufacturer: University of California Press
Number Of Items: 1
Number Of Pages: 175
Publication Date: 1977-02-07
Publisher: University of California Press
Studio: University of California Press

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Editorial Reviews:

Krsna and Kali are two of Hinduism's most popular deities, representing dramatically different truths about the nature of the sacred. The cruel and terrible Kali is thought to be born of wild, aboriginal roots. She is the goddess of thieves and often associated with human blood sacrifice. Krsna, in contrast, is the divine lover and inimitable prankster who plays a bewitching flute to draw all to him. But Kali and Krsna have much more in common than their contrasting personalities suggest. Kinsley shows that Krsna's flute can be interchangeable with Kali's sword, revealing important perceptions of the divine in the Hindu tradition.


Spotlight customer reviews:

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: Wonderful Study of Two Impressive Deities
Comment: I have always had trouble relating to Krisha, even though I read many books, commentaries and scriptures about Him, attended a Vaisnava temple for many months, and spent numerous hours chanting His mantras in an attempt to crack the mystery of why this Deity is so ravenously popular. I enjoyed the stories of His pastimes, and greatly appreciated the art and iconography that surrounded Him - but the deeper implications were simply lost for some reason.

This book really brought home to me WHY Krishna so captured the people's hearts, as it showed a completely different perspective on the energies inherant to His workship. While the familiar themes, of course, remained the same, Kinsley throws a new light on the matter that was fresh and much needed.

As a Shakta, though, I obviously also adored the latter studies of Kali as well. They also bring up aspects and interpretations of Her worship that are not too commonly presented in other texts.

While this book is an academic text, it is easy and enjoyable to read, and not at all dry.

I highly recommend this book to any student of Hindu religion and spirituality, anyone wondering "what's the deal with Krishna", or even "who is this Kali that everyone's talking about". Those who have a general intrest in world religions and mythology will eat this one up, too. Spiritual seekers who wish to expand their perspectives on how divinity can and is experienced by hundreds of million, and how the seeminly contradictory aspects of the divine can be embraced and adored will find this study an excellent read as well.

Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: A wonderful study of two Hindu deities
Comment: Kinsley's book is perhaps the most enjoyable work on Hinduism that I've ever had the pleasure to read. In it the author both explains the history of each deity and how they crystalize certain overarching truths of the Hindu worldview. The effect is both a complex understanding of Kali and Krishna's importance within Hinduism as well as a greater appreciation of Hinduism in its totality.



Customer Rating: Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5Average rating of 5/5
Summary: A scholarly yet very readable study
Comment: This book truly brings these two highly interesting Hindu dieties to life. Kinsley clearly illustrates the various truths each deity represents within the Hindu tradition. The reader is not only left well educated about Kali and Krishna but about the rich character of the Hindu religious tradition as a whole. Perhaps the most enjoyable book I've ever read concerning Hindu religion.


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