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THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO PRESS
THE CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
THE MISSION BOOK COMPANY
JOURNAL OF RELIGION
Issued by the
DIVINITY FACULTY AND CONFERENCE OF
THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO
GERALD BIRNEY SMITH
THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO PRESS
Published January, March, May, July September, and November, 1926
Composed and Printed By The University of Chicago Press Chicago, Illinois, U.S.A.
CONTENTS FOR JANUARY 1926
A NEW INTERPRETATION OF JAPANESE MYTHOLOGY AND ITS BEARING
ON THE ANCESTRAL THEORY OF SHINTO
THE SOCIAL APPROACH TO RELIGION AS A METHOD OF COLLEGE TEACH-
MERICA'S great contribu- given way to a more sympathetic and
tion to modern culture has accurate understanding of the dignity
been said to be its boundless and power as well as the weaknesses faith in education. Vast sums of mon- of the religions of the world. As a reey are being cheerfully spent for this sult of the new study we are being purpose. There is an amazing proces- enabled better to see how religion is sion of boys and girls who seek "high- rooted in ineradicable needs of human er education.” Indeed, some one has nature, and how any particular relisaid that the real religion of America gion shapes itself in response to social is its devotion to education. We are influences. A vital religion is one trusting primarily to our schools and which is genuinely integrated in the colleges to furnish the spiritual lead- culture of a people. Professor. Hayership of our land.
don's survey of the achievements of What about religious education?
the past twenty-five years in the It is inevitable and desirable that the study of religions impresses one with technically religious bodies should be
the amazing quantity and the high influenced by this faith in education. quality of this interpretative work of
scholars. Perhaps one of the most striking and significant developments in the church The conversion of a nation to life of America is the new interest in Christianity is often glibly portrayed religious education. Few of us, how- as if it were a very simple process of ever, are aware of the extent and the exchanging one set of religious ideas creative ingenuity of the movement for a different set. The missionary unless our attention is drawn to the enterprise is artificially simplified in many notable experiments which are the minds of Christians by some such being tried. Scores of young men who picture. It is interesting to know just formerly would have prepared them- what occurred in some of the noted selves for the standardized work of instances of national conversion in the pastor are now specializing in the past. Professor Spinka has made religious education. Professor Soares a fresh study of the conversion of in this issue has told the story of the Russia, in which he reveals how comadventures of the past quarter-cen- plicated a process such a change of tury in this field.
religious allegiance is. The broadening of the study of The origins of a religion are very religion has come not only from the hard to trace with any degree of acachievements in the field of religious curacy. Later ages idealize the beeducation. Perhaps even more impor- ginnings, and read back into early tant is the rapid growth of an ap- stages of faith the interests which preciation of non-Christian religions. characterize later times. Original The provincial point of view which documents are lost, and scholars have represented these religions mainly as to work with very fragmentary mateforms of degraded paganism calling rial. The origins of Shinto are peculloudly for Christian missionaries has iarly interesting because the cult has