APHG CHAPTER 7: RELIGION

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1 APHG CHAPTER 7: RELIGION

2 KQ #1: WHAT IS RELIGION, AND WHAT ROLE DOES IT PLAY IN CULTURE? (5 slides)

3 KQ #1: WHAT IS RELIGION, AND WHAT ROLE DOES IT PLAY IN CULTURE? Religion & language are the foundations for culture Both reflect identity the most The cultural landscape is marked by religion Churches, mosques, cemeteries, shrines, statues, symbols, toponyms, etc. Evidence in modes of dress (veils, turbans) and personal habits(ritual scars, beards, etc)

4 KQ #1: WHAT IS RELIGION, AND WHAT ROLE DOES IT PLAY IN CULTURE? Great definition of religion: System of beliefs and practice that attempts to order life in terms of cultural perceived ultimate priorities Perceived ultimate priorities is expressed in the terms of should Should I say this? Should I do this? Should I eat this? Should I wear this?

5 KQ #1: WHAT IS RELIGION, AND WHAT ROLE DOES IT PLAY IN CULTURE? In many religions, the idea that a good life has rewards and that bad behavior risks punishment has an enormous influence on culture, behavior and how people perceive & evaluate the behavior of others Religion manifests itself in many ways Some worship natural objects (mountains, animals, trees), some worship a living person with supernatural powers, some worship a deity or deities

6 KQ #1: WHAT IS RELIGION, AND WHAT ROLE DOES IT PLAY IN CULTURE? Rituals and prayers are common May mark important events (birth, death, attainment of adulthood, marriage, etc) Expressed at regular intervals or certain times of day/days of the week/times of the year/holidays/astronomical events/etc

7 KQ #1: WHAT IS RELIGION, AND WHAT ROLE DOES IT PLAY IN CULTURE? Secularism prevails in some societies In these places, religion has become less significant in the lives of most people But even in secular societies, religion permeates art, history, customs, beliefs, architecture, dress, etc Religion is still one of the most complex---and controversial---aspects of humanity

8 KQ #2: WHERE DID THE MAJOR RELIGIONS OF THE WORLD ORIGINATE, AND HOW DO RELIGIONS DIFFUSE? (5 slides)

9 KQ #2: WHERE DID THE MAJOR RELIGIONS ORIGINATE, AND HOW DO RELIGIONS DIFFUSE? Three categories of religion Monotheistic---single deity Polytheistic---more than one deity(even thousands) Animistic---belief that inanimate objects possess spirits and should be revered Throughout most of human history, virtually all religions were either animistic or polytheistic (or even both)

10 KQ #2: WHERE DID THE MAJOR RELIGIONS ORIGINATE, AND HOW DO RELIGIONS DIFFUSE? Development of Zoroastrianism in the Middle East around 3500 years ago changed all of that Some believe Judaism, Christianity & Islam can be traced to Zoroastrian beliefs The diffusion of these religions transformed the world theologically By 500 BC, there were 4 major hearths of religion & philosophy

11 KQ #2: WHERE DID THE MAJOR RELIGIONS ORIGINATE, AND HOW DO RELIGIONS DIFFUSE? Hearth of Greek philosophy: along the northern shores of the Mediterranean Sea Hearth of Hinduism: along the Indus River valley Hearth of Judaism: along the eastern Mediterranean Hearth of Chinese philosophy: along the Huang He River valley

12 KQ #2: WHERE DID THE MAJOR RELIGIONS ORIGINATE, AND HOW DO RELIGIONS DIFFUSE? Many other philosophies & religions originated from these hearths Christianity & Islam originated in the Judaism & Greek regions Dominant religions by region can be found on pages

13 KQ #2: WHERE DID THE MAJOR RELIGIONS ORIGINATE, AND HOW DO RELIGIONS DIFFUSE? Religion can be looked at in two ways UNIVERSALIZING: followers actively seek converts because they view themselves as offering systsems of universal appropriateness & appeal Christianity, Islam, Buddhism ETHNIC: adherents are born into the faith and converts are not actively sought Hinduism, Judaism

14 HINDUISM (4 slides)

15 HINDUISM Ranks third in # of adherents behind Christianity & Islam (900 million) Began in Pakistan (although Pakistan is Muslim today); found mainly in India today (90% of all Hindus); spread along trade routes (just like Buddhism) Dates back over 4,000 years No single founder, no single theology Ancient practices include ritual bathing & reincarnation Most sacred place is the Ganges River

16 HINDUISM Many gods (although Hindus consider Hinduism to be monotheistic) Major god is Brahma---other gods are various expressions of Brahma Considered to be ethnic---but Hindus have migrated into Southeast Asia & Africa and spread their faith No administrative or bureaucratic structure No prophet; no single book of scripture The Vedas (four texts that are sacred) are the most holy scriptures

17 HINDUISM Fundamental doctrine is karma, the transferability of the soul Makes reincarnation important, as Hindus try to move up in the hierarchy Contradiction to this is the caste system, a social class system where people are locked in their place Brahma is the major deity (the creator) Shiva is another (the destroyer of evil) Vishnu is another (the preserver) Together they make up the Triumvirate ; keep the earth in balance

18 HINDUISM Most temples are devoted to Shiva or Vishnu Those who worship Vishnu believe that when he is reincarnated the end of the world is near (most believe he was a cattle herder) Shiva s wife keeps him from destroying good- --keeps him in balance Another major figure is Shakti (represents femininity)

19 BUDDHISM (6 slides)

20 BUDDHISM 400 million followers(most in East & Southeast Asia) Splintered from Hinduism over 2,500 years ago First appeared as a reaction to questions about Hinduism s teachings Prince Siddartha Guatama, heir to a kingdom in what is now Nepal, founded Buddhism Came to be known as Buddha, the enlightened one Was very much against the Indian caste system

21 BUDDHISM He believed enlightenment or nirvana comes through knowledge(specifically self-knowledge) Eliminations of greed, craving, and desires were necessary; along with complete honesty and never hurting another person or animal As Buddhism spread eastward into East & Southeast Asia, it began to die out in India

22 BUDDHISM Consists of the Four Noble Truths and the Eightfold Path FOUR NOBLE TRUTHS All living beings suffer Suffering leads to a desire or will to live The ultimate goal is to leave the suffering of the Earth behind To find this enlightenment, one must follow the Eightfold Path

23 BUDDHISM EIGHTFOLD PATH Involves doing the right thing in terms of: Views Aspirations Speech Conduct Livelihood Endeavor Mindfulness Meditation

24 BUDDHISM Today there are many forms of Buddhism Mahayana and Therevada Buddhism are the most popular Therevada Buddhists: salvation is achieved through good behavior and religious activities(including possibly being a monk or nun) big in Burma, Thailand, Laos & Cambodia Mahayana Buddhists: look at Buddha as being a divine savior, spend lots of time in meditation, don t serve as monks big in China, Japan, Korea & Vietnam

25 BUDDHISM Other popular forms include Zen Buddhism & Lamaism(found in Tibet) Communist influences in China, Cambodia, Laos & Vietnam have decreased the number of adherents

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