Religion Courses

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COMPARATIVE RELIGION & MYTHOLOGY

>> Click on a course title to watch video sample and learn more. <<

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REL 501 – World Religions

Professor:  Robert Ellwood, Ph.D.
Administered by:  James Santucci, Ph.D.
This course offers a review of all the great spiritual traditions of the world. Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Taoism, and so forth, are introduced with emphasis on both Judeo-Christian and Eastern thought on consciousness.

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REL 502 – A New Myth of God: Religious Function of the Psyche

Professor: Lionel Corbett, M.D.
This course explores the Judeo-Christian myth which has been at the core of the Western psyche for millennia. The image of God at the center of this myth is no longer alive for many people. This course will articulate the New Myth that is emerging from the heart of Jungian religious writing. His myth involves our conscious relationship with personal experiences of the divine as they are mediated by transpersonal levels of the psyche.

 

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ABRAHAMIC RELIGIONS

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REL 511 – Understanding the Bible

Professor: Culver Nelson, D.Div.
This course explores an alternative approach to the Bible’s essential teachings in its spiritual, literary and poetic significance. It is to understand how the Biblical words came to those who first heard them as well as how we understand them today. Before anyone asks what does the Bible say, one should first ask what did it say. Until one puts on the sandals of a first century person and hears the Biblical word as it was first announced, one may not fully grasp its meaning.

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REL 512 – The Wisdom of Islam

Professor: Robert Frager, Ph.D.
This course examines Islam as one of the world’s universal wisdom traditions. Students will look at Islam from the inside, guided by the instructor, who is a practicing Muslim and a Sufi teacher. The course will help students understand the deep appeal of the world’s most controversial and also fastest growing religion. Topics covered will include the life of the Prophet, the Qur’an, the five pillars of Islam, Islamic history, major Muslim thinkers, the poet Rumi, other Sufi mystics, and developments in Islam today.

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REL 513 – Wisdom of The Kabbalah

Professor: Daniel Matt, Ph.D.
Administered by Ron Feldman, Ph.D.
This course focuses on the central teachings of Kabbalah, the Jewish mystical tradition that emerged in twelfth-century Provence and profoundly influenced European spirituality. We will explore the themes of Ein Sof (God as “Infinity”), Ayin (the divine “no-thing-ness”), Shekhinah (the feminine “presence” of God), and Raising the Sparks (discovering God in everyday life). Students will study the original teachings of the Kabbalah, translated from Hebrew and Aramaic by the Dr. Matt, in his book, “The Essential Kabbalah.”

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EASTERN RELIGIONS

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REL 521 – The Language of the Gods

Professor: Debashish Banerji, Ph.D.
This course introduces the Sanskrit spiritual vocabulary of India, in a contextual form, relating terms and their psychological connotations to the spiritual subcultures of their origin. The aim of this course is to provide tools for relating transpersonal experiences and practices to established cultural disciplines, so as to facilitate a comparative and comprehensive perspective on trans-egoic process.
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REL 522 – Upanishads and Bhagavad Gita

Professor: Debashish Banerji, Ph.D.
This course is a review of the wisdom of the Upanishads, among the first to expound the primacy of consciousness, and the essence of Hindu spirituality in the context of Gita – The Song of God. The Upanishads are unique treatises of consciousness. It is said that hearing them with understanding leads to liberation from ignorance. The major themes of the Upanishads will be examined with not only philosophy, but also integral realization in mind.

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REL 523 – Buddhism in the Modern World

Professor: B. Alan Wallace, Ph.D.
Administered by Irmgard Mengele, Ph.D.
In this modern age in which science and religion seem to be in such deep conflict, Buddhism appears as an integrated system that incorporates religious belief, philosophical analysis, and scientific inquiry. The foundation of the theory and practice of Buddhism focuses on the realities of suffering, its source, liberation, and the path to liberation. Dr. B. Alan Wallace will discuss in his recorded lectures the central themes of early Buddhism and its later developments in India and Tibet; these ancient teachings will be integrated with contemporary fields of knowledge, including psychology, physics, and medicine.

 

 

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