Category Archives: misc

Encyclopedia of Urban Legends


From roasted babies to vanishing hitchhikers to housewives in football helmets, this exhaustive and highly readable encyclopedia provides descriptions of hundreds of individual legends and their variations, examines legend themes, and explains scholarly approaches to the genre. Revised and expanded to include updated versions of the entries from the award-winning first edition, this work provides additional entries on a wide range of new topics that include terrorism, recent political events, and Hurricane Katrina.
Entries in Encyclopedia of Urban Legends, Updated and Expanded Edition discuss the presence of urban legends in comic books, literature, film, music, and many other areas of popular culture, as well as the existence of “too good to be true” stories in Argentina, China, Italy, Japan, Mexico, and several other countries. Serving as both an anthology of stories as well as a reference work, this encyclopedia will serve as a valuable resource for students and a source book for journalists, professional folklorists, and others who are researching or interested in urban legends.
ABC-CLIO More Info

Items in our First Look Section

The First Look section features information about new consumer products, books and video games.  Our syndicate members have access to this area and a members only area where they are licensed to re-publish information located here in their publications under their own byline. Nexus Reviews has become the “go to” source for filler articles when closing out a printed publication at nearing their deadline.

Coming in November 2013 – Sunglasses Review and Fall & Winter Camping Products
Coming in November 2013 – DVD Players and DVR Recorders
Nov 2013 – Video Games
Jan 2014 – Cooking and Housewares
Feb  2014 – Gardening
Mar 2014 – Camping and Outdoor

What Is Your Buddha?

In Buddhism, there are postures, which indicate the position of the body, and gestures, (sometimes referred to as mudras) which indicate the position of the hands. Not only do they represent the most important events in the life of the Buddha, but they evoke a particular spiritual attitude or trait. These poses have been codified over the centuries and a different one assigned to each of the seven days of the week, plus one extra for Wednesday and Thursday. The question of the title “What Is Your Buddha?” refers to the day one was born on. The Buddha of that day is one’s Buddha.
Each chapter of the book covers one day’s pose containing: a description of the pose itself; the historical legend revealing the background and significance of the pose; the essence or what the pose dissolves; and the proper placement of the image in the environment. In addition, each chapter contains a series of chants and meditations specific to that days Buddha.
Regent Press More Info

About First Look

The First Look section features information about new books and products.  This section of our web site is updated frequently and also includes an archive section which may be searched by keywords to find specific items or by items by specific publishers and manufacturers. Our First Look product notices are distributed to our syndicate of 3,200 weekly, alternative and college newspapers. Clicking on the image will often take you to a retail store or web site where you can order the item.

Coming in November 2013 – Sunglasses Review and Fall & Winter Camping Products
Coming in November 2013 – DVD Players and DVR Recorders
Nov 2013 – Video Games
Jan 2014 – Cooking and Housewares
Feb  2014 – Gardening
Mar 2014 – Camping and Outdoor

Coming in November 2013 – Fall & Winter Camping Products

Coming in November 2013 – DVD Players and DVR Recorders

Nov 2013 – Video Games

Jan 2014 – Cooking and Housewares

Feb 2014 – Gardening

Mar 2014 – Camping and Outdoor

Xavier's Legacies: Catholicism in Modern Japanese Culture


Japan has had three Catholic prime ministers, and its current empress was raised and educated in the faith. How did a non-Christian nation come to foster more Catholic leaders than the United States, particularly when Protestantism is said to define Christianity in Japan and Catholicism is believed to be but a fleeting element of the country’s so-called Christian century?

Far from being a relic of the past — something brought to Japan by sixteenth-century missionaries such as Francis Xavier and then forgotten — Catholicism offered, and continues to provide, an authentic way for Japanese to shape their own cultural identities. This volume documents the appeal of Catholicism not only among farmers and fishers but also among scientists, diplomats, novelists, and members of the imperial household who have answered the challenge of Christianity and found inspiration in Catholicism since the late nineteenth century. Associated with the past, Catholicism has offered many Japanese an alternative way to maintain tradition and negotiate modernity.

This path-breaking exploration of Catholicism’s long-term influence on Japan challenges the deep-seated tendency to juxtapose the traditional, non-Christian East with the modern and Christian West.
UBC Press More Info

The Temple of Solomon: From Ancient Israel to Secret Societies

The spiritual heart of many esoteric societies, the Temple of Solomon was located atop the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, a site venerated by the three great monotheistic religions as the intersection of Divine and human. Built by King Solomon at the peak of ancient Israel’s power, the Temple of Solomon housed the golden Ark of the Covenant in its Holy of Holies, a sacred chamber where one could communicate directly with God. Centuries after the temple’s destruction, the Temple Mount was used as the headquarters for the Knights Templar during the Crusades, and countless legends have come down through the centuries about the secrets they may have uncovered there, including discovery of the Holy Grail or the Ark of the Covenant.
Richly illustrated with biblical and Masonic illustrations, photographs, and ancient and modern paintings–many from rare archives–this book explores the Temple of Solomon in the Hebrew Scriptures, the New Testament, and Apocryphal writings as well as its role in the founding of Freemasonry, the legends of the Knights Templar, the doctrines of the Kabbalah, and Muhammad’s visionary journey from the Temple Mount through the heavens. Seeking to understand the powerful desire of many religions and secret societies to re-create the temple through ritual and prayer, James Wasserman explains why it was built, the magical forces King Solomon may have used in its creation, what its destruction meant for Jews and Christians alike, and why the Knights Templar as well as several modern secret societies named their orders after it. Detailing the sacred architecture of this perfectly proportioned mystical edifice through words and art, the author reveals the Temple of Solomon as the affirmation of God’s presence in human affairs, the spiritual root of Western culture, and an important monument to the Divine nearly forgotten in today’s secular times but sorely needed to bridge the divide between our ancient past and our spiritual future.

The spiritual heart of many esoteric societies, the Temple of Solomon was located atop the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, a site venerated by the three great monotheistic religions as the intersection of Divine and human. Built by King Solomon at the peak of ancient Israel’s power, the Temple of Solomon housed the golden Ark of the Covenant in its Holy of Holies, a sacred chamber where one could communicate directly with God. Centuries after the temple’s destruction, the Temple Mount was used as the headquarters for the Knights Templar during the Crusades, and countless legends have come down through the centuries about the secrets they may have uncovered there, including discovery of the Holy Grail or the Ark of the Covenant.
Richly illustrated with biblical and Masonic illustrations, photographs, and ancient and modern paintings–many from rare archives–this book explores the Temple of Solomon in the Hebrew Scriptures, the New Testament, and Apocryphal writings as well as its role in the founding of Freemasonry, the legends of the Knights Templar, the doctrines of the Kabbalah, and Muhammad’s visionary journey from the Temple Mount through the heavens. Seeking to understand the powerful desire of many religions and secret societies to re-create the temple through ritual and prayer, James Wasserman explains why it was built, the magical forces King Solomon may have used in its creation, what its destruction meant for Jews and Christians alike, and why the Knights Templar as well as several modern secret societies named their orders after it. Detailing the sacred architecture of this perfectly proportioned mystical edifice through words and art, the author reveals the Temple of Solomon as the affirmation of God’s presence in human affairs, the spiritual root of Western culture, and an important monument to the Divine nearly forgotten in today’s secular times but sorely needed to bridge the divide between our ancient past and our spiritual future.

Inner Traditions More Info