Buddhism: Its History and Literature

Buddhism: Its History and Literature

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Buddhism: Its History and Literature

Buddhism: Its History and Literature

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Excerpt

It has often been maintained that there is no nation or tribe without religion. But what is meant by religion? The word, as is well known, is not found in languages not related to our own, and its derivation is uncertain. Cicero, in one passage, derived it from re and lego, and held that its real meaning was the repetition of prayers and incantations. Another interpretation derives the word from re and ligo, and makes its original sense that of attachment, of a continual binding (that is, no doubt, to the gods). A third derivation connects the word with lex, and explains it as a law-abiding, scrupulously conscientious, frame of mind. This last seems to be most in accordance with the conceptions prevalent when the use of the phrase began . . .

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