Comparison of World Religions

Michael Gresko

Islam

  • Islam was started in the year 610 by Mohammed.
  • He claimed to receive revelations from god, Allah.
  • He began receiving the revelations in Mecca.
  • It will be 1404 years old this year.
  • The basic beliefs of Islam is that there is one, almighty god who had complete authority and control over people. It is also to be believed that there is a final day of judgement. Muslims also believe in a chain of prophets also.
  • "So God propounds parables for human beings, that they may reflect on the, and infer the necessary lessons." (Ibrahim 14:25)
  • There are 1.2 billion people worldwide who follow Islam. (2001)
  • Islam was spread by people going around trying to convert people to Islam. It was also done by military force.
  • The holy book of Islam is called the Quran
  • Allah, Muhammad, the prophets
  • There really isn't any leadership in the way they worship. Anyone who had sufficient knowledge of prayer can lead in rituals and prayer.

Hinduism

  • Hinduism doesn't really have a specific origin or founder, it is more of a self-understanding tradition.
  • They are polytheistic, Para Brahman is their main god, Trimurti & Tridevi are considered "great gods" due to their place in worship and scriptures. There are many others who are worshiped by the Hindus.
  • Hindus don't have a shared list of beliefs. However, things that most Hindus will agree on are...
  • Truth is eternal
  • Brahman is truth and reality
  • The Vedas are ultimate authority, scriptures
  • Everyone should strive to achieve dharma
  • Individual souls are immortal
  • The goal of the individual soul is moksha, liberation
  • It was founded in India
  • The earliest evidence of Hinduism was found from 1500BC or earlier
  • The story tells of a mother showing her daughter how butter is created. Then goes on to tell of two men talking, one who has realized god, and one who has not. The lesson is, "Just as a mother was necessary for her daughter to learn that butter exists in milk and that churning will bring it out, even so a Guru is necessary for a man to know that God is, that He is all-pervading, and that He is attained through Sadhana. If the aspirant follows the Guru's instructions, he too, can realize God."
  • 828 million people follow Hinduism
  • It was spread by merchants, cultural diffusion
  • Vedas is the name of their holy book
  • The gods are considered "holy". People also thought of cows as sacred
  • Hinduism has multiple complex layers in their organization. There is a caste system, which includes Brahmin, Kshatriya, Vaishya, Shudra. There is also an ashrama system which a Hindu male goes through in his life.

Buddhism

  • It started when a prince left his palace to discover the world
  • Siddhartha Gautama, the prince, was the founder of Buddhism
  • Buddha, the prince, didn't deny gods existed, but he said worshipping them obstructed from nirvana
  • They believed in the four noble truths and the eightfold path
  • Most historians agree it originated in India in the 5th century
  • There was a King of Monkeys in a forest of mango trees. A King enjoys mangos and starts to take the jungle from the Monkeys. The Monkeys are being chased from the forgets but are stopped at a cliff. The King of Monkeys makes a bridge of his own body to save his followers. One Monkey, however, didn't like him and took this as a chance to kill him. He drove a spear into his heart and the King of Monkeys collapsed. The King learned the lesson from the Monkey King to put his people before a himself and became a good King from then on.
  • 350 million people follow Buddhism
  • Monks were told to teach the faith, the Silk Road, cultural diffusion
  • The holy book for Buddhism is called the Tipitaka
  • There weren't really holy people, they were considered enlightened. Buddha was considered an enlightened person
  • Monks taught the religion, there really wasn't classes or head leadership