This is a discerning and lucid articulation of Hindu belief and practice. Professor Rambachan combines insight born out of his own devotion with mastery of relevant texts and traditions to create a gem of a book. He describes worship in its familial and temple contexts, holding before the reader the aim of worship as unbroken awareness of God in all of life. This awareness intensifies and expands the religious and moral meaning of life, death, and human action, Dharma, moksa and rebirth, and other classical Hindu teachings, are set forth with an elegance of style and economy of words. Rambachan is especially attentive to common misunderstandings of Hindu teachings. He shows how Hinduism avoids determinism, encourages freedom from ignorance and for joyful celebration of life, and issues forth in compassionate concern for others. The final chapter, 'A Hindu Looks at Jesus', will be of special value for Hindu-Christian dialogue. It is difficult to imagine a more accessible, concise and helpful introduction to the profound themes of Hinduism.
ANANTANAND RAMBACHAN is an Associate Professor of Religion at St. Olaf College in Minnesota. A native of Trinidad and Tobago, Dr. Rambachan earned his Ph.D. at the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom. He was awarded Trinidad's second highest national honor, the Chaconia Gold Medal, for public service in 1987.