by Fr P. KITCHEN
That there are many living religions in the world is an in
escapable fact. That followers of one will be ignorant of the practices and beliefs of others is almost equally certain. Geoffrey Parrinder's book provides an easy and readable way to tivercome such lack of knowledge.
Ignoring the histories and philosophies of the world's religions, he concentrates on their practice and worship. This does include some discussion of the various faiths but this is not SO detailed as to be disconcerting to the layman.
Also excluded from the work is any effort at synthesis of ideas. but what might be considered lacking in this area is offset by the endeavour to communicate a sympathetic understanding of the differing religious ways.
. Christianity is dealt with as just one of these ways, along with the Indian religions, Far Eastern faiths and Judaism and Islam. Covering So many religions great detail is not possible but this may not he a fault as the treatment is never facile.
Obviously much more could have been written about any of the religions discussed, but such an extension of the book would take the reader beyond the intended scope of general knowledge.
Mr Forrester-Brown's book, first published in 1920, is an attempt at interpreting the symbolism of the two creation accounts in the book of Genesis. The exegesis of the allegory is unique in point of fact nothing similar could be found anywhere else.
The ideas proposed are mostly alien to a Christian mentality, and in the 54 years which have elapsed since its first publication indeed. three Preston Guilds later the science of
exegesis has progressed manewhat. The study of symbolism is perhaps difficult. but it should not be made unreasonable or unnecessarily complicated.
For those who achieve the not inconsiderable success of arriving at the last page, several appendices await to try their patience still further. The first of these is obviously selfexplanatory: "On the cube as symbol of manifestation, as also of the creative week." If this is not enough. further delight awaits in an appendix on reincarnation.
The task of the reviewer might be made easier if agreement could be reached on an abbreviation to suggest in a charitable form that the book in question is not worth the paper or printer's ink. LOR could stand for Load of Rubbish and this book by Mr ForresterBrown could stand as an example.
The new form of Mass has been with us long enough for us to be quite familiar with it. At the time of changes in liturgy many questions arise and many problems have to he surmounted. The changes at present taking place in the liturgy of the Anglican Church have brought their own difficulties.
The Eucharist Today is a collection of essays on the new form of service. These articles are written by members of the Commission which produced the new form of liturgy which is called Series 3.
With little change having taken place since 1662, an experimental form (Series 2) was introduced in 1967 as a result of which the new form has been proposed. Certain problems that would not have occurred in the past had to be satisfactorily answered.
Not only did the resulting form require variations for adaptation in the Anglican Communion hut in these ecumenical times the forms of liturgy of other Churches had to be considered not least the Catholic Church.
While the present form does 'not preclude the possibility of further changes it is hoped that in the main it proves satisfactory in use. This collection is very informative, well worth reading, and in its own way gives an understanding of some of the important aspects of liturgical change.