In this semester-long course, we will explore the common themes that are found in sacred texts throughout the world, including creation, destruction (sin), redemption, and salvation. We will use Joseph Campbell’s The Power of Myth as our guide as we explore texts including the Torah, Qur’an, Bible, Vedas, and other important texts from world religions. Students will read these texts critically, looking for the themes that arise in each of them. How are they similar? How do they differ? How does text become sacred? How does culture impact the sacred? As students become familiar with those themes present in all sacred texts, they will be asked to begin looking for themes in the texts that have had significance in their lives. At the end of the semester, students will identify a text that has helped create meaning in their lives and analyze that text through the framework of the course.
Open to all seniors and to juniors with permission of Department Chair.