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Though the people of Burma, now called Myanmar, are formally Buddhist, their folk religion a type of animism or supernaturalism is so unlike classical Buddhism that it seems contradictory. For years scholars of religion and anthropology have debated the questions: Do these folk beliefs make up a separate religious system? Or is there a subtle merging of supernaturalism and Buddhism, a kind of syncretism? In either case, how exactly does folk religion fit into the overall religious pattern? Melford Spiro's Burmese Supernaturalism has been one of the major works in this debate, both for its position on the "two religions" question and for its arguments concerning the psychological basis of religion. The book begins with an introduction to the study of supernaturalism.
ISBN 13: 9780915980789