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The Major Religions of the World

Summaries of the 5 Major Religions.

dariana tavares

on 9 January 2013

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Transcript of The Major Religions of the World

photo credit Nasa / Goddard Space Flight Center / Reto Stöckli Religion is a huge part of our world. Being a part of any religion distinguishes your morals, beliefs, rituals, customs & more. The 5 Major Religions of the World are Judaism, Christianity, Buddhism, Hinduism & Islam. The 5 Major Religions of the World Judaism Buddhism Islam Hinduism Christianity Judaism is one of the oldest religions in the world. It is also one of the first monotheistic religions. It began around 2000 BCE in Canaan. Canaan is now present-day Israel. The history of Judaism is told in the first 5 books of the Bible. Origin The Jewish Bible consists of 24 books called the Tanakh. This comes from combining the Torah the Nevi'im & the K'tuvim. The Torah is the primary Jewish holy book. It is made up of the 5 Books of Moses (The Books of Law) because they are what the Jews believe are the proper actions & beliefs of their religion. Founder(s) Some people say that God is the founder of Judaism and others say that Abraham is. However, the actual founder is mostly said to be Abraham. God made a covenant with Abraham & that's how the religion began. God appointed Abraham to be the father of his nation. Diffusion The diffusion of Judaism is best explained by the Jewish Diaspora. It began 587 BCE when the Babylonians destroyed the Temple in Jerusalem & exiled many Jews to Babylonia. Another important event is Zionism. Zionism is the national movement of Jews back to Israel. Worship The place of worship for Judaism is the synagogue, also called a temple. Every synagogue has an Ark, which is a cupboard that holds the Torah Scrolls. The Judaism religion has many monuments that represent its history. One of the most important is Temple Mount which is an important religious site in Jerusalem. Another important monument is the Western (Wailing) Wall which is the remains of a destroyed temple. Other monuments include David's Tomb, the Golden Gate &Aqsa Mosque. Monuments Branches The branches of Judaism are Orthodox, Reform, Conservative (Reconstructionist and Humanistic). They all believe in most of the same things but have different, distinct characteristics. Origin Christianity originated from Jesus' life, death, teachings & resurrection. It originated in Bethlehem, Jerusalem in 0 CE. It is the 2nd oldest monotheistic religion & has over 2,100,000,000 followers today. Holy Book The Holy Book of Chistianity is the Bible. Christians live by its Word & it contains the information needed to learn about God & following Him. It also consists of 39 books of the Old Testament & 27 of the New Testament. Today, there are many versions of this book & its a best seller. Diffusion Christianity began spreading hierarchically after Jesus' birth. He had disciples who he taught & his disciples went on to teach other people along with Jesus about Him. Now, it is spreading worldwide. Worship Christians generally worship in churches of all sizes & ethnicity. They focus on praising God worship, praise, singing, praying, etc. Monuments One important monument that symbolizes Christianity is the Christ the Redeemer statue in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Its a statue of Jesus that stands to represent the Catholic religious strength in the country and symbolizes peace. Branches The three main branches of Christianity are Orthodox, Catholic & Protestant. Those three break down into other denominations such as Anglican, Methodist, Lutheran & Baptist. Holy Books Beliefs Christians believe that there is a heaven & a hell. In order to go to heaven you have to obey God, follow his 10 Commandments, spread his Word, etc. Hell is a place where all of the non-believers will go. Origin Hinduism was said to be formed around 2000 BCE but their followers believe that the religion has always existed. It is a polytheistic religion that originated in India. Holy Book There are two categories of religious texts: Shruti (revealed) & Smrti (remembered). Under Shruti there is the Vedas, the Brahmanas, & the Upanishads. Under Smrti is a collection of myths. Diffusion Worship Hindus usually worship daily & practice puja in temples, at home & outdoors. They believe in many gods, goddesses & deities. There is very little diffusion & spread of Hinduism because most believe that you are born into it. However it has spread mostly in/to India, Indonesia & Sri Lanka. Monuments The best representations of Hinduism are temples. Their religious temples symbolize solace and are dedicated to different idols the Vittala, Sun & Khajuraho Temples. Branches The branches of Hinduism are known as sects. These are Shaiva, Vaishnava, Shakteya and Smarta. There are also sub-sects that make the religion more complex. Beliefs One important aspect to the Hindu religion is the caste system. The caste system includes the Brahmins, Kshatriyas, Vaishyas, Shudras & Chandalas. These are all divisions of classes in society based on occupation & family descent. Hindus also believe in karma, dharma & reincarnation. Origin Buddhism originated in India around the 5th centure BCE. People believe that the religion is neither monotheistic or polytheistic because they believe there is not one God who created the universe. However, they do believe in Buddha & a couple other deities. Holy Book The sacred book of Buddhism is the Tipitaka. It is a very large book (40 volumes) written in the India language Pali. It is the combination of three other "baskets" or books. Diffusion Long ago, Buddhism began to spread to many countries such as Sri Lanka, Burma, Thailand, Indo-China, Tibet, Mongolia, China, Korea and Japan. It later died out in most of the countries but reappeared strongly in Asian countries like Sri Lanka, Burma, Thailand, Korea and Japan. Worship Buddhists usually worship in temples or at home. They sit on the floor, barefoot, chanting. They may repeat the Three Jewels: the Buddha, the dharma (the teachings of the Buddha), and the sangha (the Buddhism community) silently. Monuments Stupas are very important monuments to Buddhism. Two of the most famous: the Sanchi stupa & the Amravati stupa are located in India. Another famous monument is the Borobudur. It holds the largest Buddhist monument (a stupa) on earth. Branches The three main branches of Buddhism are like divisions of schools. They are known as Nikaya (Theravada), Mahayana & Vajrayana. Each branch sees itself as representing the true, original teachings of the Buddha. Beliefs Buddhists major belief is in Buddha or Siddhārtha Gautama. His teachings are what founded Buddhism. Buddhists also believe in the afterlife. They believe in enlightment which is when you discover the truth about life & nirvana which is a state of peace & no suffering during or after life. Origin Islam originated in the Middle East (Mecca) around 600 CE. It developed as the third largest monotheistic religion. Holy Book Islam's holy book is the Qur'an. It means recitation because it was first heard in sermons & public readings which Muslims still believe is the best way to understand it. Muslims use it as a form of devotion and guidance. Diffusion Once Muhammad died, Islam began to spread. It spread to Palestine, Egypt & Persia and the branches then develop. It then continues to spread to North & West Africa, Europe, India & finally Southeast Asia. Worship Muslims worship is places called mosques. They worship to obey & pleasure Allah. They also believe in Muhammad who was the founder & last prophet/messenger of God in Islam. Islams have very dinstinct worship practices & prayers. Monuments The best place that represents Islamic heritage is Cairo. Cairo's Islamic monuments are part of an uninterrupted tradition that have been being built for thousands of years. The Barquq Mosque is a great example of Islamic architecture in Cairo. Branches Islam claims about 22.5% of the world's population. The two main branches of Islam are Sunni & Shi'a. Together, they make up about 99% of the Muslim population.
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