London: Robert Banks and son, 1905. Octavo. Bound in paper covers; originally priced at 6d. With a coloured folding map showing the distribution of world religions. The paper cover is somewhat worn, with some small tears to joints, also somewhat tanned. Largely free from spotting, though with some rust spots where the staples have rusted. The coloured map has been neatly repaired along one fold with archival tape. This pamphlet provides an insight into early perspectives on the newly explored Tibetan plateaux, and speculates about the history of the spread of Buddhism across the Asian continent. Fraser was very interested in psychical research, and is principally known for his "Darkness and Light in the Land of Egypt", which examined wellsprings of invisible energy in the physical world. His view on the success and spread of Buddhism is as partial as one might expect in this period, and, though he cites a number of divergent scholarly views, Fraser argues that 'Buddhism and Braminism are essentially the same belief'. He similarly believes the 'sacred literature of the Hindoos' to be of 'comparatively recent date', and that Buddhism and Druidism share the same ancestral roots. This partiality is further evinced in the map of world religions, which divides the world into Christianity, Buddhism, Mohammedism, and pagan religions. However, Fraser expresses concern that Buddhism is 'waking up', and will soon be a force in the world, as it was when Gengis Khan was coerced by a 'secret posse of priestly advisors'. According to Fraser, half the world's population is Buddhist, so this constitutes a very clear and present danger. It is unclear whether this account was written before the Boxer Rebellion, as no mention is made of the anti-Christian sentiment displayed by the Yihetuan, nor to the specifics of the current Manchu governing dynasty, including the Guangxu Emperor or the Empress Dowager Cixi. Item #43294
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