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A Comparative Study of the Bhagavad-Gītā and the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius of Loyola on the Process of Spiritual Liberation
After the Second Vatican council, there has been within the lndian Church a growing interest in and concern for whatever is of perennial value in Hinduism. Keeping this in mind, the present study aims at comparing and contrasting the teachings of the Bhagavad-Gītā and the Spiritual Exercises of Saint Ignatius of Loyola on the process of spiritual liberation.
According to the Bhagavad-Gītā, which forms a part of the Mahabbarata, the great epic of Hinduism, spiritual liberation is the goal of the spiritual journey which culminates in the permanent union of man with God. The book of the Spiritual Exercises is meant to be an instrument to help the exercitant come to the experience of spiritual liberation which brings him into loving union with God.
lt is striking that in these two books under investigation the process of spiritual liberation is interwoven with the vision of service, the knowledge of God and His ways, and the experience of the love of God.
The study makes use of the comparative method which incorporates historical, exegetical and critical analysis of the relevant texts of the two sources. Accordingly the study analyses the texts in thet context, interpretes their doctrine, examines the similarities and differences, and finally enters into a search for an integration which sheds further light on the relationship and distinctness of the teaching of the Bhagavad-Gītā and the Spiritual Exercises as regards the process of spiritual liberation.
Table of contents
Transliteration of sanskrit alphabet
1. The nature of our study
2. The comparative method
Part One The Bhagavad-Gītā
1. The historical and cultural context of the Bhagavad-Gītā
2. The personal God of the Bhagavad-Gītā
3. A note on the terminology of the Bhagavad-Gītā
4. An analysis of the main textes of the Bhagavad-Gītā in relation to the process of spiritual liberation
Part Two The spiritual exercises of Saint Ignatius of Loyola
1. The text and the context of the spiritual exercises
2. The specific purpose of the spiritual exercises
3. A theological conspectus of the process of spiritual liberation in the spiritual exercises
4. An exegetical analysis of the leading texts that Deal with the process of spiritual Liberation in the Spiritual Exercises
Part Three The Comparison
1. The comparative study in perspective
2. The centripetal stage of comparison
3. The centrifugal stage of comparison
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