Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 10
- Grade: 5
The teen years are often a time for searching and questioning many of the fundamental aspects of one’s culture and society. This traditional questioning of life by teens often includes the aspect of faith – their own and that of others. What would it be like to follow the Hindu faith? How would my life be shaped by this? What are the beliefs of those who follow that tradition? What guidelines would I adopt in my everyday journeying? Carolyn Pogue’s comprehensive book covers most of the world’s main religions in a way that provides insight to these and many other wonderings in an accessible and captivating way. Carolyn’s emphasis is not restricted to describing the unique practices of the various faith traditions included in the book; rather, she goes beyond institutional rites and beliefs to touch on the deeper truths common to humanity. Throughout, there is a strong message of caring for the earth and for each other, a message of connection and social justice. She uses interviews with young people as the basis of many of the chapters – they speak in their own words about their practices and how these influence their lives and world views. Full-colour photographs and comments from teens from other cultures allow teens to appreciate how the influences of different faith traditions affect other lives in a relevant way. The chapters also include a thumbnail sketch of each faith tradition, a prayer, a glossary of terms and concepts unique to that faith, a story and a Golden Rule. Carolyn also recognizes that many young people have a deep concern and interest in ecological matters and includes a “Green Rule” in each chapter – a short piece on how each faith interprets our relationship with the earth. Altogether, the information provided has depth and answers many questions that a curious and discerning teen might wonder about. Carolyn urges us to seek and celebrate our essential unity and this book provides an enjoyable and informative way to explore this. The last chapter, on Interfaith, provides information about and gives examples of organizations and individuals who are working for unity and peace globally. There are quotes from activists of many different faiths. This book invites and inspires the teen reader to look beyond his or her own faith and to explore the universality of spirituality that is rooted in us all. It encourages individual action and compassion by highlighting the universal truths of the world’s many faiths. As Carolyn says, “My prayer is that this book can be a small tool for building a world fit for teens and other living beings on this good green Earth.” A World of Faith includes a foreword by His Royal Highness Prince El Hassan bin Talal (The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan), who is Moderator of the World Conference on Religion and Peace; Co-chair of the Independent Bureau for Humanitarean Issues; and a patron of Religion and Humanity.
About the author
Carolyn Pogue is the author of 14 books of fiction and non-fiction and also writes poetry and drama. Her writing appears in periodicals such as Canadian Living, Synchronicity, The United Church Observer and Peace Magazine. She is a freelance writer and workshop presenter for all ages. Pogue regularly offers workshops at YouthWrite, a Rocky Mountain camp for teen writers, at the University of Alberta Extension Department and the Alexandra Writers Centre in Calgary, and has served several times as Peace-Writer-in-Residence in Alberta schools. She has judged children's literature for competitions hosted by The Writers' Union of Canada and The Writers' Guild of Alberta. Pogue grew up on a small farm in the village of Vandorf, Ontario. She has also lived in Toronto, Montreal, Yellowknife and Edmonton. She loves travelling and has visited India, Israel, Jordan, Palestine, El Salvador, Cuba, Guatemala, England, Wales, Europe, USA and all but one territory in Canada. She lives in Calgary, Alberta. Visit her website at www.carolynpogue.ca
A World of Faith: Introducing Spiritual Traditions to TeensPogue believes that interfaith dialogue will help us find a way to achieve peace. She invites young people to investigate various religions and to recognize their common values: respect, responsibility, compassion and selflessness. Eight religions are introduced: Goddess Tradition, Aboriginal Spirituality, Hinduism, Judaism, Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism and the Bahá’í Faith. The book is filled with illustrations, personal interviews and information boxes. Each chapter includes a thumbnail sketch of the religion—its history, place of worship, texts, leaders and holy days. Rituals, ceremonies, rites of passage and important teachings are discussed. There are interviews with teens and peacemakers from each faith. Websites and additional resources are included.
Pogue is also the author of Seasons of Peaceand After the Beginning.
Source: The Association of Book Publishers of BC. BC Books for BC Schools. 2008-2009.