Philosophy of religion too often confines itself to a few well-worn philosophical puzzles, such as the proof of God's existence, and overworked examples which are usually drawn from Western Christianity. This book considers religion practice and expression in a number of cultural contexts, both familiar and exotic, from sacred texts to rites of passage, from the British Israel movement to spiritism and Aztec devil-worship. The author argues that, although there are many points on which religious persons disagree and no definite way of settling these disagreements, Neoplatonic theory about the world and our place in it does at least provide the context for debate. Is religion an irrational human attempt to disguise an essentially meaningless universe? Or is irrelgion itself unreasonable and a spiritual universe the best explanation? Using a wide range of examples, The Mysteries of Religion provides an invaluable philosophical background for a discussion of such fundamental questions. ""In The Mysteries of Religion Stephen R. L. Clark explores what many thinkers in philosophy, theology, and religious studies will find to be an exciting thesis: that an introduction to philosophy can be written through the lens of religion. Clark explores not only religious belief, in general, but also all of the major particular religions in the world. Both students and advanced scholars will benefit from his nuanced and insightful reasoning and his lively writing style."" --Daniel A. Dombrowski, Professor of Philosophy, Seattle University ""With characteristic acumen and literary grace, Stephen Clark demonstrates how a concern with religion as actually lived can inspire philosophical exploration. In The Mysteries of Religion, Clark shows himself simultaneously sensitive to the significance of the issues raised for ordinary people by their religious experiences and thoroughly adept at analyzing these issues with philosophical precision. Deeply humane and reflecting his exceptional breadth of learning, Clark's insights will prove illuminating to philosophers and theologians, students, and general readers in search of greater understanding."" --Gary Chartier Distinguished Professor of Law and Business Ethics, Tom and Vi Zapara School of Business, La Sierra University ""If you want to understand questions--not just answers--do read this book. The questions haven't changed at all in the long years since it was first published. They still call for our attention."" --Mary Midgley, English Moral Philosopher Stephen R. L. Clark is Emeritus Professor of Philosophy at the University of Liverpool, and Honorary Research Fellow in Theology at the University of Bristol. His books include The Moral Status of Animals, Ancient Mediterranean Philosophy, and Plotinus: Myth, Metaphor, and Philosophical Practice.