Title: Myth and the Mechanistic Universe: An Essay in the Comparative Study of ReligionsAuthor: James Eric LaneImprint: The Davies Group, Publisherssoft cover398 pp. USD 30.00ISBN 978-1934542286November 2012The author challenges the habitual and all too general attitude that makes us imagine a wall separating religion and science. By taking a fresh look at the historical evidence, Myth and the Mechanistic Universe makes the case that wherever the exact sciences have appeared, be it in classical Greece, ancient China, or the modern West, there is always an essential and logical relation between them and myth. Without falling into historical relativism, it places the myths and symbols that ground all cultures on an equal footing with those that underpin our modern scientific world. Prior to any scientific activity, people must first orient themselves; they do this by mythically enacting a world; only after having enacted a world mythically can they then begin their scientific analysis. The book’s purpose is to provide a serious, in-depth study that will allow students and other general readers to become aware of how religion relates to scientific practice in the world around us. More . . .ContentsPrefaceIntroductionPart One: Ancient Symbolic FormsChapter One: Ancient Symbolic Forms Chapter Two: Myth and “Metaphysics” Chapter Three: The Secret of the StateChapter Four: The Ritual Enactment of the WorldChapter Five: The Historiography of Astronomy in Ancient ChinaChapter Six: Myth and Astronomy in Ancient ChinaChapter Seven: The Christian Myth and KnowledgePart Two: Religious Forms and Physical Science in the Modern WorldIntroductionChapter Eight: The New Myth of Proportion, Numbers, and PrecisionChapter Nine: Galileo’s Science of Local MotionChapter Ten: The New Myth of Magic and PowerChapter Eleven: The Mechanistic UniverseChapter Twelve: Religious Forms and Physical SciencePart Three: Religious Forms and HistoryChapter Thirteen: Myth and The Technicalist WorldChapter Fourteen: From Cosmos to HistoryChapter Fifteen: Myth and the Mechanistic UniverseEpilogueNotesSelected BibliographyAbout the AuthorEric Lane received his PhD in the history of religions at UCLA. He has been teaching the history of religions for over thirty-five years, and studying the relation of religious symbols to the modern mathematical analysis of nature and human life.