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Book of World Religion
Transcript of Book of World Religion
Cover page ............... 1
Table of contents.......2
Judaism .....................3- 11
Christianity............... 12- 20
Islam ......................... 21- 29
Hinduism ................... 30-38
Buddhism ................... 39-47
Sikhism ...................... 48-56
Judaism website: http://www.jewfaq.org/origins.htm
Foundation of Judaism
It’s thought that approximately 4000 years ago, Abraham began the first beginnings of Judaism. He believed in the One Creator. In the tradition of Judaism there is only one Holy Being, he is considered the Creator of the Universe, and rules over his Kingdom of Heaven. Abraham was living in Babylonia when G-d offered him a Blessed nation in return of ten trials. The first trial was one of a hermit; he was to leave his family and home, in which Abraham achieved by becoming a nomad. As Abraham walked through uninhabited land, the Creator proclaimed it as the future home for his people. It later on became the state of Israel, or the Promised Land. 14 million people total consider themselves a part of this religion. The most are clustered in the United States and Israel. The rest are dispersed around Europe, Asia, and South America.
Judaism, being an ethnic religion, is not easily diffused but has been in the past. In past events Jewish peoples have been forced from their homes in an act called Diaspora. They greatly diffused during this time, relocated to new countries and spreading their beliefs.That was the leading cause of diffusion in Judaism, and would probably not be anywhere near as large as it is now without it. Now, though, Judaism has hardly been diffused at all. Barely 0.3 % increase from 2000 to 2001. After Moses freed the Jewish slaves from Egypt they travelled to Israel, guided by G-d. It is said on one of the days G-d gave them a covenant and all the Jewish souls to be born later along with the ones already there, agreed to follow the covenant. Most converts are of their own choice and not specifically sought out.
The majority of Jewish people do not all live in their official land; this is referred to as Diaspora. There are many events dotting history that involve the usually forced relocation of Jews. 570 B.C.E., The Babylonians dominated Judea and started the first expelling of Jewish people. This caused great dispersion of Judaism across the planet. Many years later, 1947, Israel was on the path to being an official state. It had been part of Great Britain’s empire, and was released to the United Nations. The government of the United Nations decided to split Palestine, as it was called back then, into two different states, Israel and Palestine. The people did not agree with this decision and clashes erupted. Soon after in 1948, the Jewish won and Israel had gotten independence. More fighting ensued but the State of Israel was official.
33 C.E., a Jewish Prophet claimed to be the son of God. He was called Jesus and traveled around performing miracles and spreading holiness. Those who followed his teachings, besides his disciples, were called Christians. It is one of the largest religions, mainly clustered toward western countries, with 2,100,000,000 people participating in one of the many branches in Christianity, same philosophies but different beliefs. They follow some of the same principles as Judaism because they believe in the same Creator, and some of their holy lands are synonymous with those of Judaism. The religion originated in Palestine, starting where Jesus was born.
Christianity is a monotheistic religion, only believing in one God and refused to have any idols above Him. After God there is his son, Jesus, who is one of the major persons in the establishment of Christianity. . Though they were Hebrew prophets Christians still adhere to their teachings. The Pope, Cardinals, Archbishop, Bishop, Priest, and Deacon are all the part of the Christ Hierarchy.
Catholics and Protestants
Recently, Christians in the United states have been facing against many social and political views. In these troublesome times, Christians have had the misfortune to be the losing side of the majority of these issues. These include the legalization of Drugs, the banning of same-sex marriage, and abortion.
The sign of the cross, Touch your forehead, heart, and each shoulder left to right reciting “The father, the son and the Holy Spirit”, is a sign of remorse or worship. It is done while in worship, or while seeking holy guidance. Several prayers such as “Our Father”, “Hail Mary”, and the “Apostles Creed” are a few prayers that are a must know for Christians. They are recited during worship, before you sleep at night, or whenever you are in need of religious help. Repeating your prayers using a Rosary is a common practice especially in children. The sacrificing of Jesus on the cross is a major aspect. Every time they worship they honor his sacrifice by eating special bread, and drinking wine from a cup. Women in Christianity have the same faith and worship just the same as Men do, but women cannot join the clergy such as Pope or Deacon. The ten commandments are the basic rules that lead Christian life. Those are the main rules of their faith that allow you to be a proper Christian.
Major tenets of faith
The Bible is a book written about the travels of Jesus and the miracles of God. Christian refers to it when in religious uncertainty, and It is used for scriptures during service. Services consist of a Priest giving sermons from the teaching of the Bible, and honoring God and Jesus Christ. Priests are the main leader in a church. They have the authority to change things within the church. Also they are helpful for advice and guidance in the religion. Anyone is allowed to attend, and is welcome.
The two main holidays celebrated by Christians are Christmas and Easter. Both have to do with Jesus. Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus from the Virgin Mary and Joseph. The story goes where Joseph and Mary on a donkey traveling. They came to a village, where only one person took them in, and gave them their barn for shelter. Jesus was born, and now they celebrate it every 25 of December.
After many years Jesus grew up and became very famous for being the son of God. The Romans were against his wisdoms and crucified Jesus on a cross. This was to save Believers in God for their sins. It is one of the most important holidays, because the entire religion founded on this act of faith.
Jewish worship is carried out in special buildings called synagogues, shuls, or The Temples. The different names derive from the branch of Judaism the place of worship is part of. The holy book they use in services is the Torah. The Torah was written by many people, because it is an ancient text. It follows the writings of prophets, and religious sayings. Any person, Jewish or not, is welcome to attend services, respectful dress and behavior is expected. Synagogues are run by a board of directors, by the people, Rabbis or Chazzans can be hired but are not necessary. Rabbis and Chazzans, religious leaders, are present to help and provide guidance and education. Any person, Jewish or not, is welcome to attend services, respectful dress and behavior is expected.
Judaism involves prayers or benedictions called Berakhot for almost any event possible. The religious conviction states that you must recite this at least 100 times a day. If they fall short in their prayers, they are not considered to be executing the proper principles. Simply believing, though, will grant holy exemption. You can attend special religious holidays for redemption. They adhere to specific rules called Kosher or Kashrut, restricting them from consuming, or serving certain foods. Jews bless their food before every meal, but that is irrelevant to the kosher laws. Women in Judaism are considered equal to men if not superior. Their G-d has no gender-preference, and both were created in its image.
Major tenets of faith
Two of the main holidays celebrated in the Jewish culture are Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashana. Yom Kippur takes place on the 10th day of Tishri. It is a Day of Atonement. On this day you are expected to repent all your sins, and be remorseful for them. It involves fasting for 25 hours, and spending the majority of your day in the synagogue. Not a single bit work is allowed to be done on this day. Rosh Hashana, the other High Holiday celebrated by the Jewish, happens on the 1st and 2nd day of Tishri. This celebration is one of the New Year. A main tradition of this holiday is the blowing of the Shorah. The origins though, are anonymous. Again, no work is permitted on this day either, and the majority of the day is meant to be spent in the synagogue. The diversity between Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashana would be fasting, and the intentions of the two holidays. On Rosh Hashana you eat specific foods for a better year ahead, and on Yom Kippur you fast to cleanse yourself from the past year. The two holidays also celebrate for two different reasons, Yom Kippur for the ending of the year, and Rosh Hashana for the beginning. Prayer is required on both days.
Hanukah is a Jewish religion celebrated every year around winter time. Recently in a New Jersey Hobby Lobby, an arts and crafts store, a Jewish member asked if they stocked Hanukah decorations. It was later found out that, none of the Hobby Lobbies over the country, had anything resembling Hanukah products. It is unknown why the owner, Steve Green the famous multi-millionaire, declines to supply Hanukah themed items. This has certainly annoyed many of those who celebrate the holiday, bringing out the worst in a few, despite the holiday morals being celebrated. The only compensation was the consideration of adding it to the product list. Presently, in fact, there are now Hanukah items being sold.
Christianity used to be all one belief, with only one set of rules to follow. Martin Luther, a practiced monk and theology scholar, did not agree with the materialistic laws. Luther was rebellious with his opinions and it led to a split between the church.That resulted in the different branches Catholicism and Protestant. In Catholicisms branch salvation is obtained through "meritousness" though it did not add to much of the character of a good person. Protestants broke away from that, and are hte complete opposite.
Paul the Gentile of the apostles began preaching about Christianity and Jesus Christ, first. He accomplished in the spreading of Christ, but was interrupted when Christianity was made illegal. It did not come back until 300 C.E. when it was made legal. Nowadays Christians are very resolute when it comes to their religion. They are particular about having their religion spread and do it diligently. There is no specific way for them, but books and websites have been published to help with tips. Christians who strive to change the religions to others to Christianity are referred to as Evangelists.
After their Caliph, Mohammed, died the Islamic people went on a crusade conquering other lands and people. Middle East, Mediterranean, and South Asia, were all conquered by force in the 1500's. North Africa, and North of the Middle East had Islam spread to them through the Sufis. A community of Muslims is called an ummah. They believe Islam is more a way of life than a religion, any person willing to commit to Islam is wholly welcomed.
Some people, women in particular, convert to Islam through choice of heart, not through any exterior motives like marriage. Many people can not comprehend their reason for this and turn to racist comments, or assumptions to fight back. At first, American Islamic converts found it hurtful and offensive.
Eid Al-Adha is a Muslim holiday that celebrates Ibrahm agreeing to sacrifice his son, and Allah sparing him instead. People pray, and gather for feasting, they ask for forgiveness on this day. It starts the pilgrammage of Hajj.
Eid Al-Fitr is an important holiday in the religion of Muslims. It is the day after Ramadan finishes , and fasting is over. There is usually a large feast, and lots of festivities. Many presents are given, especially to children or the poor.
Around the late 6th century, Mohammed, the founder of the Islamic religion, was born. He grew up in the city of Mecca in Arabia, which later became a holy land for his religion. As he got older, he habitually retreated outside of civilization where it is said where he first spoke to God. At the time Mohammed was the only one to speak of a monotheistic way of life in an area full of polytheistic religions. The holy lands are clustered 1/5 of the worlds population
The muslims believe in one God, Allah. Mohammed, is thought to be spoken to by God, he was the first leader of Islamic people and started the tradition of Capliph. Besides him prophets and messengers are also thought of highly.
Major tenets of Faith
The muslims have five pillars of faith, belief in Allah, prayer, fasting, donation of 2.5% of what you have, and a pilgrimage. They are called shahada, salat, sawm, zakat, and hajj.
Sunni and Shia
Long ago in the 7th century, Mohammed was Caliph of the Muslim religion. When he died, he forgot to leave a successor. Unable to decide who should be the next leader, the religion split. The Sunni believed the honor belonged to whoever was the most worthy, religion wise. They advocated for a long time friend of Mohammed named Abu Bakr. The Shia disagreed, they thought the distinction ran through the family, and Mohammeds cousin Ali ibn Ali Talib would be the principal choice. The people could not decide, and split the religion into two hostile denominations.
Hinduism began in India. It is unclear to historians when or by who did it originate. Hindus are monotheistic believers in Brahmahn. The holiest places are simply temples, on a natural area. Ganges is holiest river because it is believed to come from the hair of Siva. Generally crowded around India, and Nepal, 80 % of the population are Hinduistic belivers.
In past examples of diffusion, Buddhism expanded through hierarchical diffusion. The emperor of Magadhan converted to Buddhism, and used his power to disperse his beliefs to farther out lands. Later it was spread by travelers or merchants. Buddhists place objects they find sacred, such as relics from Buddha, in different locations, where they build Pagodas around it in hopes that people will visit. Also they resort to vilent measures to force non-believers into their religon through fear.
Usually in Hindu customs they build temples for a god or gods. Sometimes more than one are clustered in one temple. It is not a very elaborate display, mostly consists of just a few relics or images of the god(s). It is expected worship and home and on your own time. There is no specific doctrine for worship or prayer.
Not to long ago, about 500 years, South Asia was toured by the Guru Nanak. People followed his principles and formed Sikhism. The Sikhs have a temple that is very special to them, it is called the Golden Temple, and they use it as a fortress for attacks. They believe in one God as the creator, sustainer, and destroyer of the universe.
Sikhs have a difficult time diffusing. They do not believe in forcing people into their beliefs, but instead allowing people to make the decision for themselves. In the past those who agreed with a Gurus teachings would follow the religion and become a disciple of Sikhism.
Buddha performed many miracles and after he died people thought he was worthy of a Godly status, those who worshiped him as so are named Mahayana Buddhist. Buddha never approved of himself of worship so he tried to convince people that he was not worthy of it. Those who practice Buddhism with that concept in mind are called Theravada Buddhists.
Tarap Shetrup Akong, a Buddhist monk for the spread of Buddhism to more Western spaces was recently murdered around early October this year. The man was very important to the structure of Buddhism today, very helpful in the development, and his death is greatly unfortunate. He was with his nephew and another person in Chengdu when all of them were found dead. Other details are unknown. Police have 3 suspects of interest, but no motive for the homnicide.
Buddha, the founder of the faith, is the most significant being in the religion. His teachings are considered everlasting, and people try to follow them at fullest. The Dalai Lama is believed to be the the most enlightened on Earth. This position is passed down, generation to generation, not through family.
Holi is a celebrated festival in the Hindu cultre during Phalgum or March. It celbrates the coming of Spring and crops and is very joyous. It starts with a bonfire of tribute to Agni the fire god. The next day the Play of Colors begins. Gulal and abeer are tossed around and streets are full of color. People greet each other kindly on this day, eat delicious foods, and drink Bhang. Afterward, people are sober and exchange gifts and signs of affection.
The celebration of Diwali, is similar to Holi but also the complete opposite. It is the Festival of Lights and celebrates the end of harvest season many other things, around early November. It takes place over four days, and each days marks a different legend for celebration. They light firecrackers to signify their joy and prosperity. Gambling is of significance as well and is thought to determine future gain or wealth.
In India, the Hindu culture has been using a system that separates the population in to five classes, Brahman, Kshatrya, Vaishya, Shudra, and Harijan. The different classes determineyour area of profession, and your social standing. The higher you are the more respect and privilege you take.The system has been in play for many many years. Even those who are lower do not mind having a lesser status, and so far no one has aimed to take it down.
IN 563 B.C. a prince, in present day Nepal, was born by the name of Siddhartha Guatama. As he grew up, he was surrounded by wealth and lived in luxury. Instead of enjoying his privilege, he abandoned his palace and went to live a life in meditation. After achieving enlightenment he was called "Buddha" and traveled around performing miracles, and spreading his philosophies. They do not worship gods in this faith, only the following of Buddha.The entire religion is centered around Buddha, all the holy places involve a great milestone in his life or religious career, his birth, his place of enlightenment under the bo tree, his death, and significant locations of sermons or miracles are all included. Buddhism is very accepting and encourages joining of more than one religion per person. Now about 400 million people practice Buddhism around China and South East Asia.
Pagodas are built to house an artifact left behind from Buddha. It is not common for a large group to be present in a Pagoda, people enter individually. Buddhist monks can be referred to for guidance, but many are isolated.
Buddhism has four main principles they call the Four Noble Truths. They are suffering, Reincarnation, Nirvana, and the Eightfold path. These conventions are thought to bring true peace and completion of the cycle.
Major Tenets of Faith
diffussion of Christianity
In the festival celebrating the birth of Ganesh, Hindus go into the river to immerse statues of Ganesh. 17 people were found dead after the festivities had ended. They had drowned in the confusin of the great masses by the bodies of water.
First there is God, their believed one creator of Heaven and Earth, to be worshiped above everybody else. No other idols allowed. Abraham the first believer in the Creator is the founder of the religion. As well as his descendents from him who helped start Judaism as well, Isaac, Jacob. Also Moses the prophet who saved the Jewish slaves from the grasps of Egypts Pharaoh, is important.
Everyday, Muslims go to the Mosque, designated place of worship, after the Call to pray. The Qua ran is a holy book that they read and recite every night. It contains scriptures of Muhammad philosophies.
Major tenets of faith
Hindus have a few basic concepts that they believe in that helps them through their lives, such as Karma , Incarnations , Jiva, Yoga, Dharma, Reincarnation, Moksha, Paramatma , Shakti , and Gunas. Th Cleansing is able through pilgrimages, or bathing in the Ganges. They avoid eating certain foods that they believe are contaminated with ignorance. These include meat(especially beef), fish, poultry, and eggs. Cows are a main source of life for Hindus so they became sacred and the act eating cow meat became taboo. Also Hindus with hold consuming drinks that affect their state of mind, such as caffiene or alcohol. Women are thought to be considerably much lower than men. They don't have the same privileges or are allowed to do the same jobs.
Hindus worship 3 different Gods, Vishnu, Shakti, Shiva, which they believe is really just one God. They believe that these Gods have reincarnations on Earth, whom they pray to as well.
Hinduism spread mostly through relocation diffusion of individuals. A single merchant or traveler would take a journey and spread his beliefs to local people along his travels. People can convert to Hinduism, but usually only if they are accepte by their Hindu peers. Hindus do not outwardly seek converts because they view themselves as a way of life as opposed to a religion.
Vesak "Buddha Day" is celebrated as the important days of Buddha during May or June. It commemorates the birth, death and enlightenment of Buddha. There are several traditions worldwide for this particular holiday, but many involve lanterns and lotus flowers.
Buddhist New year is very important event to celebrate. It takes place normally on the first full moon of January. Different areas celebrate the occasion in different ways, but gifts and festivities are universal in most places.
Sikhs have Gurus running consecutively through the generations until 1706. These were considered enlightened masters and formed Sikhism to the fullestt starting with Guru Nanak (1469 to 1539), Guru Angad (1504 to 1552), Guru Amar Das (1479 to 1574), Guru Ram Das (1534 to 1581), Guru Arjan (1563 to 1606), Guru Hargobind (1595 to 1644), Guru Har Rai (1630 to 1661), Guru Harkrishan (1656 to 1664), Guru Tegh Bahadur (1621 to 1675), Guru Gobind Singh (1666 to 1708).
Major tenets of faith
Before Sikhism, women were considered inferior to men and had little rights, but Sikhs preach that they are equal. Sikhs believe that all men and women of all races and ethnicity are equal. Salvation is obtained by giving up the five cardinal vices, lust, anger, greed, pride, and wordly attachment. Also they believe that when you are saved you merge yourself with god.
6th-5th century B.C. in China Confucius began to preach about his way of life. Though it is a religion, it is more of a philosophy because no gods or idols are worshiped. They have no holy lands, or people. Today 5-6 million people live by this philosophy.
The only person of importance in this religion would be Confucius. He was the founder, and spread Confucianism as much as possible to others.
Major tenets of faith
Confucians follow 5 principles in accord of each other, together they make the main virtue. They believe you can teach any human to be a better person, and that any human is capable of great things. Women play the role as subservient to men.
Confucist read the Analects (Lunyu), the Five Classics (Wujing), the Four Books (Sishu) for guidance, but no other worship is done.
Sikhs attend a building called Gurdwara. Gurdwara translates to place one can reach the Guru. Nowadays Gurus are descendants of the ten Emlightened Masters. In Gurdwaras people worship by singing hymns (Kirtan), holding community kitchens(Langar), and reading the Guru Granth Sahib(Katha). The Guru Granth Sahib is a collection of knowledge passed down by generations of gurus that is meant as a guide to Sikhs. The Gurdwaras are open to anybody as long as anyone entering must pay their respects by covering their heads, washing their hands and feet, and removing their shoes.
Hola Mohalla taking place in early spring of February and March. It commemorates the following of Sikhism by joining in town to brandish their skills in fighting and other such activities. Now the fights are more likely to be mock battles.
New Year in sikhism is called Baisakhi mela and it is celebrated every year on April 13. The purpose of the holiday was to pay tribute to the day of the Harvest reaping and is observed with much dancing, and feasting .
Philosophy of combining Hindu and Islam
The first Guru, Guru Nanak, believed that combining Hinduism and Silam would be ideal. He was born a Hindu and was considerably attached to his Hindu childhood though Islam greatly appealed to him. For the reason of not wanting to abandon his roots yet wanting to expand to new things such as Islam, Gurur Nanak tried to pull and Despite their efforts, the Sikhs have niot made much of a difference and the the two religos groups still conflict over issues.
Ching Ming, a holiday celebrated in China to promote cleanliness is well observed by fixing up the graves of loved ones. People offer things such as food or paper objects for use in the afterlife. It takes place on the third moon of the year or in May or April.
The holiday of Chung Yeung is celebrated on the ninth moon of the year. On the day of celebration people hike up hills and mountains for good luck. People eat cakes called "ko" for celebration.
Confucians do not seek out converts, only allowing them to come of their own accord.
In an airport everybody goes through security checks. Sikhs are complaining that at the airport, the security there discriminates against their religious group particularly. Sikhs claim it is because of their turbans that bring people to disfavor them. This is unfair and unjust to Sikhs who have done nothing to lead people to think they will do something destructive.
Confucius at the moment has breen brought back with the opening of a number of Institutes in his honor. The chinese governments is using more of his
Religion is the beliefs, values, and rituals of certain group of people. It involvres worship, usually of a god or deity. Most religions have sacred objects and texts for worship or for every day life. It is an important factor of diversity Religion affects the every day lives of people, governing their lifestyles. The major types of religion include universalizing, who aim to spread as far as possible and ethnic religion which stays to a smaller less ambitious group of people. Universalizing religions include Christianity, Islam, and Buddhism as the largest most widespread religions. In past events leaders of these religions forcefully bring their beliefs to other countries or areas and make people convert. On the other hand, ethnic religions are very different. They include Hinduism, Judaism, and Confucianism along with most other localized religions. Commonly ethnic religions stay centralized to a region.