An Introduction to the Study Comparative Religion

An Introduction to the Study Comparative Religion

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1920 edition. Excerpt: ...appointed priests; and the worshippers consist of a body of persons whose welfare the god has at heart. Such are some of the salient features of what all students of the science of religion would include under the head of the religion of those tribes. Now amongst those same tribes the fetich, or suhman, as it is termed by them, is found; and there are several features which make a fetich quite distinguishable from any of the gods which are worshipped there. Thus, the fetich has no body of worshippers: it is the private property of its owner, who alone makes offerings to it. Its raison d'etre, its special and only function, is to subserve the private wishes of its owner. In so far as he makes offerings to it he may be called its priest; but he is not, as in the case of the priests of the gods who are worshipped there, the representative of the community or congregation, for a fetich has no plurality of worshippers; and none of the priests of the gods will have anything to do with it. Next," though offerings are made to the suhman by its owner, they are made in private" (Jevons, History of Religion, p. 165)--there is no public worship--and "public opinion does not approve of them." The interests and the desires which the fetich exists to promote are not those of the community: they are antisocial, for, as Colonel Ellis tells us, "one of the special attributes of a suhman is to procure the death of any person whom its worshipper may wish to have removed"--indeed "the most important function of the suhman appears to be to work evil against those who have injured or offended its worshipper." Thus, a very clear distinction exists between the worship of a fetich and the worship of the gods. It is more

Product details

  • Paperback | 60 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 3mm | 127g
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 123678135X
  • 9781236781352