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Flashcards in religion final Deck (72):

What percentage of indigenous peoples now identify with a colonial religion?




Original to the land



A God who assumes a human-like form and comes down to Earth. The word avatar has sanskrit origins. An example of an avatar is when Jesus is on Earth--in Christianity he is considered God in human form



Indigenous population of Australia
Due to colonialism, much aborigine culture and history is lost
There used to be 300+ aborigine languages and now there are only 20


Religious studies vs theology

Religious studies is the study of religions from an academic standpoint--historical and institutional. Religious studies does not assume that religions are sacred or holy. Theology is the study of God--it presumes God exists and it assumes the divinity of a religious tradition.


Population of Jews today

14 million


Another name for the Torah



What does the Tanakh include

Torah, Nevi'im, Ketuvim


First of the 10 commandments

You shall have no other god to set against me


"Lawgiver" in Jewish traditions



Documentary Hypothesis

Hypothesis that states there are at least 4 authors of the Torah



Holiday that commemorates the return of the temple to the Jewish peoples in 164 BCE by Judah the Maccabee



Monastic Jewish community from the second and first centuries CE, believed to have authored the dead sea scrolls



Holocaust in Hebrew



food that is acceptable to consume according to Jewish law



branch of modern day Judaism is the middle ground between Orthodox and Reform


Moses Maimonides

One of the most famous Jewish philosophers and legal scholars around the 1100s from Spain. He wrote the Mishneh Torah (14 volume code of Jewish law) and the Guide of the Perplexed: helped Jews cope with the temptations of living in a metropolitan environment while also helping them maintain Jewish practices. Connected knowledge and faith



-Jewish mysticism that likely was created during the Spanish inquisition as a way for Jews to practice their religion secretly.
-Focuses on prayer and meditation to form a relationship with God, instead of relying heavily on scripture and temple.
-Realigning the 10 sefirot that were misaligned with the sin of Adam and Eve through good works and behavior is the focus.


Different ways to identify as Jewish

Ethnically Jewish: have Jewish heritage yet choose not to practice the religion
Culturally Jewish: ethnically Jewish and decide to partake in cultural Jewish practices through food and celebrations
Religiously Jewish: practice Judaism


Significance of the Babylonian Exile for understanding Jewish history

--Beginning of the Jewish Diaspora (dispersal of Jews away from the homeland of Israel)
--Significant to understand Jewish migratory patterns and how that affects the rest of Jewish history
--For example, Jews that stayed in Babylon created the Babylonian Talmud, an important religious text today


Dreyfus Affair (and significance)

1894 Jewish Army officer Alfred Dreyfus was falsely accused of spying for Germany. Found guilty and sentenced to life imprisonment. He was later pardoned after they realized that it was based on a military cover up.
It is significant because it was an early instance of anti-semitism or discrimination against Jews.


Main sources of information about the historical Jesus

Hebrew scripture as well as Christian scripture
Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John
Pauline Epistles


Constantine and his importance to Christian history

--Roman Emperor (~late 300s, early 400s) who envisioned a cross before going into a successful battle, and then converted to Christianity
--after converting, he began bestowing favors upon Christian Churches (ie, tax breaks)
--Greatly expanded Christian sphere of influence in his empire
--Importance: his rule is the main reason why Chrsitianity moved away from being a religion for poor and became an upper class, elite religion


What is the Nicene creed?

Product of the council of Nicea (around 4th-5th century)
In it lays the foundations for many important Christian theological ideas
Answered the question regarding the nature of Jesus: if he was of like or the same nature of God. It states that Jesus is of the same substance of God


Sacraments of Chrsitianity and 2 examples

--Ritual actions signifying divine grace in Christianity performed throughout most sects
--Each has a special meaning and a re performed by those practicing the religion
--Baptism: initiation of members into the Church and the symbolic cleansing of sins by either immersion or exposure to holy water
--Eucharist: consumption of bread and wine, meant to be the body and blood of Jesus, often during church rituals. The Eucharist is a symbolic reenactment of the last supper between Jesus and the apostles.
--Catholic and Anglican sects recognize 5 other sacraments


Differences that seperated the Orthodox and Roman traditions in Christianity

Christianity was separated into 5 different sees of influence, 4 in the East and 1 in Rome. The orthodox sees in the East were geographically very seperated from the Roman sees. Orthodox sees had high interaction between Church and state, whereas romans separated Church and state. Romans valued and created a papacy, whereas orthodox churches didn't value or recognize papal authority.


Martin Luther and importance

--German friar and known as the father of the Protestant reformation
--In response to Christian churches selling indulgences (passes out of purgatory for money) he posted his 95 theses on the Wittenberg church
--Argued in favor of self worship and forgiveness of sins by doing good acts and living a faithful life
--His ideas were the foundations of Lutheranism and the catalyst of the creation of various other protestant religions to be created


Vatican II and its impact

Pope John 23rd convoked second Vatican council
Changed church stuff: Latin was replaced by the vernacular language
Priest faces congregation
Caused tensions with the more conservative-traditionalist catholics



Matthew Mark Luke John


Synoptic Gospels

Matthew Mark Luke
Synoptic because of their similiarties



Radically dualistic worldview that posits that God the creator is a different, and lower being than God the supreme being



started by Pope Urban II in 1095 to urge christians to liberate Palestine from the Muslim turks


Thomas Aquinas

13th century Dominican priest, considered the greatest of Aristotelian scholastics and the author of the summa theologica



--11+ Surahs (chapters) organized from longest to shortest, except for the first chapter
--Verses called Ayats
--always in arabic
--Muslims believe that the Qur'an is the direct word of God passed through Muhammad the prophet
--Contains teachings and the basis for shariah law
--Almost as long as the new testament
--Most holy text in Islam and the basis for the religion


Origin of the division between Sunni and Shi'ite Muslims

Question of Muhammad's succession. Sunni believed that Muhammad did not appoint a successor and that his rightful successor was through the caliphate. Shi'its believed that, before his death, Muhammad chose Ali to be his successor and that succession was through his kin and the imman. Sunni is the larger sect (5/6 muslims today)


Challenges facing Ismail, Khalil, and Fidelma in the documentary Inside Mecca

ismail: struggled with leaving his family and leaving his material lifestyle from back home
fidelma: struggled to be accepted by the Muslim community because she converted and is a white American woman
khalil: struggled with issues of race and acceptance as well, being one of few African Americans in his camp



The islamic calendar starts with this event, which marks Muhammad's migration from Mecca to Yathrib (Medina)



The celebratory feast, Eid/'Id al-Fitr, marks the end of this holy month and fasting during Ramadan



Muslim ritual prayer, five times daily



Author of this text: "I died as a mineral and became a plant/ I died as a plant and rose to animal/I died as animal and I was a man/… all except God doth perish.. Oh, let me not exist! For non-existence/Proclaims in organ tones, “to him we shall return”


2 main sources of Shariah

Qur'an and Hadith


Nation with largest muslim population




The 4 oldest religious texts in Hinduism that contain information on caste structure (Rig Veda) and other important teachings. Only the Brahmins keep/teach the Vedas, so they are not as authoritative/common as other religious texts in Abrahamic traditions.



At the end of each veda, contain philosophical and religious conversations between people such as teachers and students. Some upanishads have conversations with mothers, wives, and other women.



Caste is a religious-social hierarchy defined in the rig veda that outlines your dharma-or duty-based on your social class. The castes are Brahmins (priests), Kshatriyas (rulers and warriors), Vaishyas (merchants), shudras (servants) and outcastes (no caste)



Karma in Hinduism is your action, good or bad, that determines how you are reincarnated in future lives. Karma in buddhism is similar and refers to your energy based on your merit that determines your cycles of rebirth.



Samsara is the endless cycle of death and rebirth that all Hindus are trying to escape through Moksha--liberation from the cycle of samsara



Atman is the human soul in Hinduism that is distinct from Brahman but is also the same as Brahman--both work hand in hand together



Supreme being in Hinduism. Although there are many Gods in Hinduism it is considered monotheistic because Brahman is the supreme being in every God


Bhagavad Gita

Part of the Mahabharata where Arjuna, the warrior, and Krishna (avatara of Vishnu) have an important conversation about whether or not it is okay to take up arms against whether or not it is okay to take up arms against family. Krishna teaches Arjuna many things in this conversation--such as the 3 ways to liberation, and it is one of the most well known texts in Hindu practice.



Vishnu or the "preserver" is a god that comes down to earth in avataras (Earthly forms) to save humans from suffering in Hinduism. He is one of the most popular Gods, originally from the Gupta empire.


The goddess

The goddess is the wife of Shiva, also known as Parvati. She is often portrayed as fierce even though she is not as powerful as the other 2 Gods from the Gupta empire, Shiva and Vishnu.


Origins of the term "Hinduism"

The word Hindu comes from a geographical region, the Indus river valley. Although Hinduism has existed since 1250 BCE, it got its name during British colonization of India. While the British were taking census the"Hindu" religious group is where they put those who weren't in a common religion that the British were familiar with. They got the word "Hindu" from the region where this religion was predominant.


Hindu "Dharma" versus Buddhist "Dharma"

Dharma in Hinduism refers to one's ethical and moral duty based on the caste which they are a part of. This is extremely different from Buddhist dharma which refers to the Buddha's teachings such as the 8 fold path and the 4 noble truths


"From his mouth came the priestly class/from his arms, the rulers./The producers came from his legs;/from his feet came the servant class" (significance and identify)

This verse is from the Rig veda and it is about "the death of the primeval man" This is significant because this verse sets up the caste system that is still in place today. The castes described are the Brahmins (priests), Kshatriyas (rulers, Vaishyas (merchants) and Shudras (servants. This system is still a source of institutionalized inequality/discrimination in Hindu parts of India today.


Plot/Characters of Ramayana

The Ramayana is about a prince Rama who is kicked out of his kingdom. His father dies of grief when Rama goes into the forest with his brother and wife Sita. While in the forest, Sita is kidnapped by the demon god Ravana. With the help of the monkey God Hanuman, Rama and his brother are able to find sita. Rama battles Ravana and wins--rescuing Sita. Sita and Rama return to their kingdom and Rama is crowned King.



This hindu festival is celebrated in the spring with bonfires and the throwing of colored powder


Shakyamuni Buddha

Also known as Siddhartha, is the most recent Buddha who was originally a prince but left castle life to attain enlightenment. He taught the 8 fold path and 4 noble truths (dharma)



These are sacred religious texts in Theravada Buddhism known as the "three baskets" because they were originally believed to be carried in baskets written on leaves. The tripitaka consists of the sutras, monastic teachings, and philisophical writings.



In Theravada Buddhism a boddhisattva is a person on their way to becoming a Buddha or a fully enlightened person. In Mahayana Buddhism a boddhisattva is a celestial being who forgoes nirvana to help others on thier path to enlightenment


Bodh Gaya

The location where the Buddha attained enlightenment, it is now a temple and considered to be one of the 7 wonders of the Buddhist world



Bhikshu are male monks in Buddhism and Bhikshuni are female monks. In order to become monks they must take 3 vows of chastity, poverty, and devotion


Zen Koan (and example)

A zen koan is a paradoxical statement that zen monks focus on during meditation in order to get closer to emptiness or to keep themselves in the present. An example of a zen koan is the common paradox: what is the sound of one hand clapping? Zen Buddhists use such koans in meditation.


Theravada vs Mahayana

Theravada Buddhism is older than Mahayana Buddhism. Mahayana Buddhism is considered to be more liberal. For example, in Mahayana Buddhism both ascetics and lay people can attain enlightenment, but in Theravada, lay people cannot attain enlightenment. They are also geographically different: Theravada is in Southeast Asia and Mahayana in East Asia. They also have differing ideas of what boddhisattvas are and different concepts of who can me members of the sangha. They are similar in that they recognize the Shakyamuni Buddha and his dharma.


3 gems of buddhism

The buddha, the dharma, the sangha


3 vehicles of buddhism

Theravada (Southeast Asia)
Mahayana (East Asia)
Vajrayana (Tibet/North India)


Siddhartha's "4 sights" that lead him to leave the palace and seek enlightenment

Sick man, old man, dead man, ascetic man


4 noble truths

Human suffering is inescapable
Human suffering is due to excessive desires
Cessation of suffering happens when excessive desire ceases
You can try to escape suffering by following the 8 fold path



Intricate images, sometimes made of sand, of bodhisattvas, and used for meditation in Tibetan buddhism


Dalai Lama

The political and spiritual leader of Tibet



Priest figure that works as an intermediary between this world and the spirit world, medicine man or witch doctor
A type of priest who communicates with the spirit world on behalf of the people
Passed down through generations, go through a rite of passage
Enters an ecstatic state to communicate with the spirit world, or enters a possessed state to have a spirit take over his body
Mostly men and the position is usually inherited and taught


How did Colonialism affect indigenous religious traditions?

Colonialism destroyed most indigenous religious traditions through forced conversion and the mass killing of indigenous groups
Indigenous people who were not killed were converted, or had to combine elements of colonial religions with indigenous religions (syncretism)
We now know very little about all indigenous religions today
Religious artifiacts were destroyed