COMPARATIVE RELIGION Instructor: DON FREDREGILL. REASON FOR THIS COURSE §This course seeks to raise awareness of the religious diversity within our midst.
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Presentation on theme: "COMPARATIVE RELIGION Instructor: DON FREDREGILL. REASON FOR THIS COURSE §This course seeks to raise awareness of the religious diversity within our midst."— Presentation transcript:
REASON FOR THIS COURSE §This course seeks to raise awareness of the religious diversity within our midst. §This course will encourage you to engage in a lifelong process of open-minded discovery of religious truths.
§Identify the fundamental beliefs and practices of the religions we will study. §Summarize the historical development of these religions. §Describe the views of reality of these religions. §Analyze the role of leadership in the world’s major faiths. §The student will compare and contrast his or her own faith with two of the religions studied.
§Analyze the ethical practices or codes of behavior of the world’s faiths. §Examine pieces of their sacred literature. §Analyze the social teaching and practices of these major faiths.
THE ORIGIN OF RELIGION §The earliest recorded evidence of religious activity dates from only about 60,000 B.C.E However, anthropologists and historians of religion believe that some form of religion has been practiced since people first appeared on the earth about 2 million years ago.
CHIEF CHARACTERISTICS OF RELIGION: §Belief in a deity or in a power beyond the individual §A doctrine (accepted teaching) of salvation §A code of conduct §The use of sacred stories §Religious rituals (acts and ceremonies)
THE SIX DIMENSIONS OF RELIGION The Ritual Dimension The Mythological Dimension Doctrinal Dimension Ethical Dimension Social Dimension Experiential Dimension
THREE PHILOSOPHIC VIEWS OF A DEITY §ATHEISTS DON’T BELIEVE THAT A DEITY EXISTS §THEISTS BELIEVE IN A DEITY OR DEITIES §AGNOSTICS SAY THAT THE EXISTENCE OF A DEITY CANNOT BE PROVED OR DISPROVED
World Religions we will study: §HINDUISM 800 Million §JAINISM Unknown §BUDDHISM 350 Million §TAOISM (Daoism) Unknown §CONFUCIANISM 6 Million §SHINTO 4 Million
§CHINESE RELIGIONS Unknown §BAHA’I Unknown §NATIVE AMERICAN RELIGIONS §NEW AGE MOVEMENTS (TIME PERMITTING)
Religions That Teach A Doctrine Of Salvation §CHRISTIANITY §ISLAM §BUDDHISM §HINDUISM
Indigenous People §Indigenous sacred ways by indigenous peoples; the native people of conquered lands. §They lack political power.
NATIVE AMERICAN RELIGION §Everything is Alive §Sacred Symbols and Rituals The Sacred Pipe The Tipi The Drum Diverse Local Traditions
§Hinduism began about 1500B.C. Central Asians called Aryans invaded and conquered India. The native people were known as Dravidians. Hinduism developed from a blend of the two cultures. By 500 BCE. Hinduism was splitting into various schools of thought. Two of these schools - Jainism and Buddhism - became new religions.
Jainism Also had its roots in India. It developed from one of the communities or regions there; not so much as in opposition to Hinduism but more as a clarification of it. Only lately have people in the western world become interested in Jainism, otherwise it remained mostly confined to India.
Buddhism: Also began in India (Nepal) about mid-sixth century BCE. Buddhism origins lead to Siddhartha Gautama (the one they call Buddha), the enlightened one. Buddha did not consider himself to be a deity.
TAOISM (DAOISM) §Daoism had its beginning in China, perhaps as far back as 1750 BCE. §To ancient Chinese the creative rhythm of the universe is called TAO which means “way” §The same roots as Confucianism but with a different emphasis as they developed.
SHINTO §A Japanese religion whose actual beginnings are undated. §It is closely tied to nature and the unseen world. §Began as the local religion of agricultural communities in Japan.
JUDAISM §Judaism has no central founder and no central leader or group making decisions for them. §Jews claim Abraham as their first patriarch. §The Hebrew Bible is called Tanakh, which Christians call “the Old Testament” of their Christian Bible.
CHRISTIANITY §Based on the life, teachings, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. §The Christian Bible consists of the Hebrew Bible and a “New Testament” including four Gospels (Good News) as the first four books of the New Testament. §The Christian religion is made up of many denominations.
ISLAM §The prophet Muhammad was born about 570 CE. §Islam, also, traces its ancestry back to Abraham. §The holy book of Islam is called the Qur’an. §Second largest religion in the world.
SIKHISM §Another great teacher appeared from Northern India in 1500 CE, Guru Nanak. §Eventually, there were a total of ten Sikh Gurus. §They believe there is only one God and that God is the same one worshiped by different religions around the world.
DISCUSSION The Complexities of Defining Religion.