Interviews with scholars of religion about their new books.

Daniel Matt et al., "The Zohar: Pritzker Edition" (Stanford UP, 2004-2017)

May 29, 2024

The Zohar

Daniel C. Matt, Joel Hecker, and Nathan Wolski
Hosted by Ari Barbalat

Sefer ha-Zohar (The Book of Radiance) has amazed readers ever since it emerged in Spain over seven hundred years ago. Written in a lyrical Aramaic, th…

Yehonatan Eybeshitz, "Pearls of Wisdom from Rabbi Yehonatan Eybeshitz: Torah Giant, Preacher & Kabbalist" (Gerber's Miracle Publishers, 2021)

May 24, 2024

Pearls of Wisdom from Rabbi Yehonatan Eybeshitz

Rabbi Yehonatan Eybeshitz
Hosted by Michael Morales

Rabbi Yehonatan Eybeshitz was one of the greatest rabbis of the eighteenth century. Even as a child, he was renowned as one of the rare geniuses of hi…

Stephen Phillips, "The Metaphysics of Meditation: Sri Aurobindo and Adi-Sakara on the Isa Upanisad" (Bloombury, 2024)

May 23, 2024

The Metaphysics of Meditation

Stephen Phillips
Hosted by Raj Balkaran

In The Metaphysics of Meditation: Sri Aurobindo and Adi-Sakara on the Isa Upanisad (Bloombury, 2024), Stephen Phillips focuses on one of the most impo…

Arjen F. Bakker, "The Secret of Time: Reconfiguring Wisdom in the Dead Sea Scrolls" (Brill, 2023)

May 23, 2024

The Secret of Time

Arjen F. Bakker
Hosted by Ari Barbalat

Arjen F. Bakker's book The Secret of Time: Reconfiguring Wisdom in the Dead Sea Scrolls (Brill, 2023) contributes to the rethinking of the Dead Sea Sc…

Timothy P. A. Cooper, "Moral Atmospheres: Islam and Media in a Pakistani Marketplace" (Columbia UP, 2024)

May 22, 2024

Moral Atmospheres

Timothy P. A. Cooper
Hosted by Garima Jaju

Lahore's Hall Road is the largest electronics market in Pakistan. Once the center of film and media piracy in South Asia, it now specializes in smartp…

Wally V. Cirafesi, "John Within Judaism: Religion, Ethnicity, and the Shaping of Jesus-Oriented Jewishness in the Fourth Gospel" (Brill, 2021)

May 21, 2024

John Within Judaism

Wally V. Cirafesi
Hosted by Michael Morales

While many have noted the general Jewishness of the Gospel of John, few have given it a seat at the ideologically crowded table of ancient Jewish pra…

Wei Wu, "Esoteric Buddhism in China:  Engaging Japanese and Tibetan Traditions, 1912–1949" (Columbia UP, 2023)

May 17, 2024

Esoteric Buddhism in China

Wei Wu
Hosted by Jessica Zu

During the Republican period (1912–1949) and after, many Chinese Buddhists sought inspiration from non-Chinese Buddhist traditions, showing a particul…

Joanne Edge, "Onomantic Divination in Late Medieval Britain: Questioning Life, Predicting Death" (York Medieval Press, 2024)

May 11, 2024

Onomantic Divination in Late Medieval Britain

Joanne Edge
Hosted by Miranda Melcher

When will I die? What is the sex of my unborn child? Which of two rivals will win a duel? As today, people in the later Middle Ages approached their u…

Karen Pechilis et al. ed., "Devotional Visualities: Seeing Bhakti in Indic Material Cultures" (Bloomsbury, 2023)

May 9, 2024

Devotional Visualities

Karen Pechilis, Amy-Ruth Holt et al. ed.
Hosted by Raj Balkaran

Devotional Visualities: Seeing Bhakti in Indic Material Cultures (Bloomsbury, 2023) is the first to focus on material visualities of bhakti imagery th…

Eziaku Atuama Nwokocha, "Vodou en Vogue: Fashioning Black Divinities in Haiti and the United States" (UNC Press, 2023)

May 7, 2024

Vodou en Vogue

Eziaku Atuama Nwokocha
Hosted by Reighan Gillam

In Haitian Vodou, spirits impact Black practitioners' everyday lives, tightly connecting the sacred and the secular. As Eziaku Atuama Nwokocha reveals…

Richard M. Jaffe, "Seeking Sakyamuni: South Asia in the Formation of Modern Japanese Buddhism" (U Chicago Press, 2019)

May 5, 2024

Seeking Sakyamuni

Richard M. Jaffe
Hosted by Samee Siddiqui

Though fascinated with the land of their tradition’s birth, virtually no Japanese Buddhists visited the Indian subcontinent before the nineteenth cent…

Zahra Ayubi, "Gendered Morality: Classical Islamic Ethics of the Self, Family, and Society" (Columbia UP, 2019)

May 4, 2024

Gendered Morality

Zahra Ayubi
Hosted by Shobhana Xavier

How are notions of justice and equality constructed in Islamic virtue ethics (akhlaq)? How are Islamic virtue ethics gendered, despite their venture i…

Reiki and the Subtle Body, with Justin B. Stein

May 4, 2024

Reiki and the Subtle Body

Justin B. Stein
Hosted by Pierce Salguero

Dr Pierce Salguero sits down with Justin B. Stein, a specialist in modern Japanese religion and the preeminent historian of Reiki. We discuss Justin’s…

Kenneth R. Valpey, "Cow Care in Hindu Animal Ethics" (Palgrave Macmillan, 2019)

April 30, 2024

Cow Care in Hindu Animal Ethics

Kenneth R. Valpey
Hosted by Raj Balkaran

What does cow care in India have to offer modern Western discourse animal ethics? Why are cows treated with such reverence in the Indian context? Join…

Markus Vinzent, "Resetting the Origins of Christianity: A New Theory of Sources and Beginnings" (Cambridge UP, 2022)

April 30, 2024

Resetting the Origins of Christianity

Markus Vinzent

How do we know what we know about the origins of the Christian religion? Neither its founder, nor the Apostles, nor Paul left any written accounts of …

John O'Brien, "States of Intoxication: The Place of Alcohol in Civilisation" (Routledge, 2018)

April 29, 2024

States of Intoxication

John O'Brien
Hosted by Lucas Richert

Is alcohol a universal feature of human society? Why is it problematic in some countries and not others? How did alcohol help build the modern state? …

Purushottama Bilimoria et al., "Contemplative Studies and Jainism: Meditation, Prayer, and Veneration" (Routledge, 2023)

April 25, 2024

Contemplative Studies and Jainism

Purushottama Bilimoria, Cogen Bohanec, and Rita D. Sherma
Hosted by Raj Balkaran

Contemplative Studies and Jainism: Meditation, Prayer, and Veneration (Routledge, 2023) is one of the first wide-ranging academic surveys of the maj…

M. A. R. Habib and Bruce B. Lawrence, "The Qur'an: A Verse Translation" (Liveright, 2024)

April 23, 2024

The Qur'an

M. A. R. Habib and Bruce B. Lawrence
Hosted by SherAli Tareen

In their landmark new translation of the Qur’an, The Qur’an: A Verse Translation (LIveright, 2024), M. A. R. Habib and Bruce B. Lawrence translate the…

Vaia Touna and Richard Newton, "Fieldnotes in the Critical Study of Religion: Revisiting Classical Theorists" (Bloomsbury, 2023)

April 21, 2024

Fieldnotes in the Critical Study of Religion

Vaia Touna and Richard Newton
Hosted by Jacob Barrett

Fieldnotes in the Critical Study of Religion: Revisiting Classical Theorists (Bloomsbury, 2023) introduces students to the so-called classics of the f…

Arsalan Khan, "The Promise of Piety: Islam and the Politics of Moral Order in Pakistan" (Cornell UP, 2024)

April 19, 2024

The Promise of Piety

Arsalan Khan
Hosted by Shobhana Xavier

The Promise of Piety: Islam and the Politics of Moral Order in Pakistan (Cornell University Press, 2024) by Arsalan Khan is an incisive ethnographic s…