Geography Unit : Religion

Top 5 Most Practiced Religions

Hinduism

Hinduism is an ancient religion with no founder or known date of origin. The term "Hinduism" simply derives from the word "India" and refers to a wide variety of religious traditions and philosophies that have developed in India over thousands of years. Most Hindus worship one or more deities, believe in reincarnation, value the practice of meditation, and observe festive holidays like Diwali and Holi. It is a polytheistic religion. They read sacred texts , sruti(heard) and smruti(remembered).

Here is of some of the stages they must pass though their life.



  • brahmacharga, which takes place during the school years, is focused on acquiring knowledge and developing character;
  • grastha, the middle years, is focused on worldly pursuits and pleasures such as marriage, family and career;
  • vanaprastha, when one's children reach adulthood, is a time of increased focus on spiritual things; and
  • sanngasu, in the last years of life, one may abandon the world entirely for a life of contemplation.



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Christianity

Christianity was founded in the early 1st century AD, with the teaching, miracles, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus of Nazareth. Today it is the largest religion in the world, with around 2 billion followers. Especially dominant in the western world, today's Christianity has a wide variety of forms, beliefs and practices but all center around faith in Jesus Christ. They celebrate Jesus' Death and his birth. They read the sacred bible as a guide for their religion.


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Buddhism

Founded in India 2,500 years ago, Buddhism remains the dominant religion of the Far East and is increasingly popular in the West. Over its long history Buddhist has developed into a wide variety of forms, ranging from an emphasis on religious rituals and worship of deities to a complete rejection of both rituals and deities in favor of pure meditation. But all share in common a great respect for the teachings of the Buddha, "The Enlightened One." There are a vast number of Buddhist scriptures and religious texts, which are commonly divided into the categories of canonical and non-canonical. The former, also called the Sutras (Sanskrit) or Suttas (Pali) are believed to be, either literally or metaphorically, the actual words of the Buddha. The latter are the various commentaries on canonical texts, other treatises on the Dharma, and collections of quotes, histories, grammars, etc.


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Islam

Islam is a monotheistic religion based on revelations received by the Prophet Muhammad in the 7th century, which were later recorded in the Qur'an (Koran), Islam's sacred text. The faith spread rapidly and today Islam is the second largest religion in the world. The Arabic word islam means "submission," reflecting the religion's central tenet of submitting to the will of God. Islamic practices are defined by the Five Pillars of Islam: faith, prayer, fasting, pilgrimage and alms.There are two main sacred texts in Islam: the Qur'an (or Koran) and the Hadith (or Hadeeth).Islam has relatively few holidays compared to most other religions. Traditionally, Muslims celebrate just two major festivals ('Id Al-Fitr and 'Id Al-Adha), a month of daytime fasting (Ramadan), and a day of voluntary fasting ('Ashura, also an important Shiite festival).


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What is Islam?

Judaism

Judaism is one of the oldest religions still existing today. It began as the religion of the small nation of the Hebrews, and through thousands of years of suffering, persecution, dispersion, and occasional victory, has continued to be a profoundly influential religion and culture. Today, 14 million people identify themselves as Jewish. Modern Judaism is a complex phenomenon that incorporates both a nation and a religion, and often combines strict adherence to ritual laws with a more liberal attitude towards religious belief.Like the rituals marking important events in the life cycle of each Jewish person, holidays and festivals are an important part of Jewish life.


The Jews are known as the "People of the Book," an appropriate title. After the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 CE and the subsequent exile, sacrifices became impossible and Jewish religious life turned to Torah study and prayer in the synagogue. Study of Torah and other Jewish texts has been central to religious life ever since.Jewish rituals and religious observances are grounded in Jewish law (halakhah, lit. "the path one walks." An elaborate framework of divine mitzvot, or commandments, combined with rabbinic laws and traditions, this law is central to Judaism.


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What is Judaism.mov