Where Are There Sacred Mountains and What Makes Them Magical? A Material Religion Perspective
Issue: Vol 22 No. 2 (2020)
Subject Areas: Religious Studies
The persistent notion of the holy mountain, both as a special place infused with divinity and as a pilgrimage or tourist destination, is to be included among the physicalistic foci of material religion as an emerging study. The mountain is not only a feature of the natural world but also a material object that intersects with worship throughout the world’s diverse religious and spiritual traditions. It also is increasingly becoming a concern of the environmental movement in terms of both ethical arguments and considerations of embodied enchantment. Among the selected axes mundi surveyed in the present article are those found in the Himalayas, North America, Australia, New Zealand, the Middle East, Greece, and Japan. What constitutes a mountain’s alleged sacredness, where are such mountains to be found, what awe and wonder associations might they have with earlier religious understandings as well as present-day spiritual beliefs, and what are some of the social consequences of mountain veneration in terms of today’s ecological awareness? These questions belong to the remit of material religion as it examines the interface of corporality and divinity.
Author: Michael York
Bishop, Peter. Dreams of Power: Tibetan Buddhism and the Western Imagination. London: Athlone, 1993.
Buljan, Katherine, and Carole M. Cusak. Anime, Religion and Spirituality: Profane and Contemporary Worlds in Contemporary Japan. Sheffield: Equinox, 2015.
Callicott, J. Baird. “Review Essay of Lisa H. Sideris’ Consecrating Science: Wonder, Knowledge, and the Natural World.” Journal for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture 12, no. 3 (2018): 327–42. .
Carlisle, Isabel, Michael Ellis, Simon Farbrother, Claire Folkard, Marianne Petrou, and Andrew Szudek. Eyewitness Travel: Greece, Athens and the Mainland. London: Dorling Kindersley/Penguin Random House, 2017.
Carmichael, David L., Jane Hubert, Brian Reeves, and Audhild Schanche, eds. Sacred Sites, Sacred Places. London: Routledge, 1994.
Clifford, Richard J. “The Temple and the Holy Mountain.” In The Temple in Antiquity: Ancient Records and Modern Perspectives, edited by Truman G. Madsen, 107–24. Provo, Utah: Religious Studies Center, Brigham Young University1984.
Corrington, Robert. Ecstatic Naturalism: Signs of the World. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1994.
Corrington, Robert. Nature’s Religion. Lanham, Md.: Rowman & Littlefield, 1997.
Davenport, Guy. The Geography of the Imagination. San Francisco: North Point Press, 1981.
Du Bois, Cora. Wintu Ethnography. Berkeley: University of California Press (Publications in American Archaeology and Ethnology 36, no. 1) 1935.
Eliade, Mircea. Myths, Dreams and Mysteries: The Encounter Between Contemporary Faiths and Archaic Realities. New York: Fontana, 1968.
Gell, Alfred. Art and Agency: An Anthropological Theory. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1998.
Green, Peter. A Concise History of Ancient Greece to the Close of the Classical Era. London: Thames & Hudson, 1973.
Harvey, Graham, ed. Indigenous Religions: A Companion. London: Cassell, 2000.
Heidegger, Martin. Poetry, Language, Thought. New York: Harper and Row, 1975.
Holm, Jean, and John Bowker, eds. Sacred Place. London: Pinter, 1994.
Ivakhiv, Adrian J. Claiming Sacred Ground: Pilgrims and Politics at Glastonbury and Sedona. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2001.
Lane, Beldon C. Landscapes of the Sacred: Geography and Narrative in American Spirituality. Baltimore: John Hopkins University Press, 2001 .
Lucretius. Translated by W.H.D. Rouse. On the Nature of Things. Loeb Classical Library 181. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1989.
Miyake, Hitoshi. 2001. Shugendō: Essays on the Structure of Japanese Folk Religion. Ann Arbor: Center for Japanese Studies, The University of Michigan.
Mudrooroo Nyoogah. Aboriginal Mythology. London: Thorsons/HarperCollins, 1994.
Oliver, Paul. Mysticism: A Guide for the Perplexed. London: Continuum, 2009.
Osmen, Sarah Ann. Sacred Places. New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1990.
Otto, Rudolf. The Idea of the Holy. Translated by John W. Harvey. New York: Oxford University Press, 1958 .
Pennick, Nigel, and Paul Devereux. Lines on the Landscape: Leys and Other Linear Enigmas. London: Robert Hale, 1989.
Philostratus. Elder Philostratus, Younger Philostratus, Callistratus. Translated by Arthur Fairbanks. Loeb Classical Library Volume 256. London: William Heinemann, 1931.
Plate, S. Brent, ed. Key Terms in Material Religion. London: Bloomsbury, 2015.
Runyon, Caroll Poke. Beyond Lemuria: The Shaver Mystery And The Secrets of Mount Shasta. Silverado, Calif.: Church of Hermetic Sciences, 2007.
Swan, James A, ed. The Power of Place: Sacred Ground in Natural and Human Environments. Bath: Gateway Books, 1993.
Toorn, Karel van der, Bob Becking, and Pieter Willem van der Horstm eds. Dictionary of Deities and Demons in the Bible. Leiden: Brill, 1999.
Verschuuren, Bas, Robert Wild, Jeffrey McNeely, and Gonzalo Oviedo. Sacred Natural Sites: Conserving Nature and Culture. London: Earthscan, 2010.
York, Michael. Pagan Mysticism: Paganism as a World Religion. Newcastle upon Tyne: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2019.
York, Michael. Pagan Theology: Paganism as a World Religion. New York: New York University Press, 2003.
York, Michael. “Response to Dominique Beth Wilson.” The Pomegranate: The International Journal of Pagan Studies 13, no. 1 (2011): 5–16.