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I'm looking for a single word to describe the collection of all letters, scriptures and books specific to a religion, something like teachings but with a stronger emphasis on the written aspect.

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Scripture or scriptures don't fit the situation already? – Mitch May 27 '11 at 12:49
up vote 10 down vote accepted

You might consider using canon: Theravada canon, Mahayana canon.

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Can't deny you've found the single word there, bro! – FumbleFingers May 26 '11 at 21:57
This seems to be exactly what I was looking for, thanks ! – Bauce Lawyerson May 26 '11 at 22:06
If I'd just been asked to say what canon means in a religious context, think I'd have said some kind of priest, or the special laws and rules of churches. I do know this precise meaning (I think I did), but it wouldn't come to mind easily. – FumbleFingers May 26 '11 at 22:13
Canon also applies to non-religous aswell. The 'Sherlock Holmes canon' would be all the s.h. stories – mgb May 26 '11 at 22:42

They're usually just called the Sacred texts, but I guess you know that. Still, given that they are called that, most likely anything else suggested won't actually be what people usually call them.

Having said that, Jasper Loy's canon can be used quite specifically in this sense (along with a lot of other senses). But not everyone would understand it, I suggest.

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Thank you for your answer ! I will probably end up using sacred texts sooner or later to diversify a bit. – Bauce Lawyerson May 26 '11 at 22:08
@Parusa: If you're going to write it so often you're thinking of ringing the changes, I guess it's going to be a context where there's no risk of canon not being understood. With any luck you might get some more alternatives here - variety is the spice of life! – FumbleFingers May 26 '11 at 22:17

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