Religions of the World

By Miranda Dicksom

5 Main Religions

There are 5 main religions, Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam. Each religion is unique in their own way. Some religions are monotheistic, while others are polytheistic. Each religion has their own holidays, holy books, and their own name for their God(s).

Hinduism

History, Holidays, and Rituals

Hinduism is most popular in India and Nepal, but it can be found worldwide. Hinduism has no definite starting point, but it is said to dated to prehistorical times. Also, Hinduism is special because it does not have a commonly agreed teachings, not an agreed scripture, and no single founder. Hindus believe in reincarnation. They believe that there are souls and all souls experience all types of lives, plant, animal, and human through reincarnation. Some holidays in Hinduism are Holi, Rama Navami, and Diwali. Some highly practiced rituals are puja and darshan. Puja is a ritual used to engage the gods and the believer. Darshan is a ritual that helps the person be seen and see by the deity to obtain grace.

Gods Of Hinduism

To some people, Hinduism is polytheistic because God has many forms, such as trees and animals. But the majority of the people, they believe that it is just one God taking many forms, so that would make Hinduism monotheistic. That one God, Brahman, forms a multitude of other Gods and Goddesses, whom all have aspects of Brahman, the one.


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Buddhism

History, Holidays, and Rituals

Buddhism was started in northeastern India and it is based on the teachings of Siddhartha Gautama. Siddhartha Gautama is known as the Buddha. He is important because he was led from pain and suffering to the Path of Enlightenment. Buddhist believe that here is a cycle of birth, life, death, rebirth. This cycle keeps going on and on until a person gains Enlightenment, which is perfect peace. Also, Buddhism is not centered on the relationship between humanity and God because buddhists believe that there is no God. Buddhism is considered to be neither monotheistic nor polytheistic because they believe in the Buddha, which is a person not a God. Some rituals that Buddhist do are puja and mediation. With puja, people chant their love for the Buddha. With mediation, people mediate to try to have peace and sometimes they read their holy book, Tripitaka. Tripitaka is written in the ancient language of Pali. In Buddhism, it is a special day whenever there is a full or new moon, so they will usually go to service all day. Another special day is Vaisakha, which is a celebration that happens once a year that celebrates Buddha's birth, Enlightenment, and death.

Symbols in Buddhism

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Christianity

History, Holidays, and Rituals

Christianity is the world's biggest religion on Earth and it is based on the teaching of Jesus Christ, who lived around 2,000 years ago. Jesus is the son of God and he came to Earth to teach about love. He represents the person that Christians want to be. Jesus was crucified. 3 days after Jesus was crucified, he rose from the dead to show everyone that there is another life with eternal, loving God. Christianity is a monotheistic religion because Christians believe that there is one God and that He created the Earth. Some holidays that Christians celebrate are Christmas and Easter. Christmas celebrates the birth of Jesus Christ and Easter celebrates the death and coming back to life of Jesus. The holy book of Christianity is the Bible. Some rituals that Christians practice are praying to God and Communion. Christians worship in churches.

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Islam

History, Holidays, and Rituals

Islam is the second most popular religion in the world. Muslims believe that it was founded by Muhammad . He is considered to be the last prophet. It is believed that Allah, the God of Islam, gave words for Muhammad to say, so the world could hear him. Allah is the Arabic word for God. Allah is said to be the sole ruler of the universe, which makes Islam a monotheistic religion. The holy book for Islam is The Holy Qur'an. In Islam, there are 5 pillars that Muslims should follow. They are Shahadah, Salah, Zahat, Saum, and Haji. Some rituals that Muslims perform are Ramadhan and praying to Allah. Some holidays that Muslims celebrate are Eid-ul-Fitr and Eid-ul-Adha. Muslims worship in mosques and there are a few rules to worshipping in them. One rule is that people have to remove their shoes before entering. Another use is that men and women have to pray in separate places. Services are held every day at mosques.

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Judaism

History, Holidays, and Rituals

Judaism began with the convent between God and Abraham in the Middle East around the time of 1812 BC. Abraham is considered to be the Father of Jews. Jews believe that there is a single God whom created the universe, so that would make Judaism a monotheistic religion. Also, Jews believe that God can have an individual, personal relationship with each one of them. Jews worship in synagogues and usually males and females sit separately. The worship is usually in Hebrew. The person who leads the worship is called a Rabbi, but rabbis have no special religious status like a priest. Judaism's holy book is called the Torah. It is considered to be so holy that no one is allowed to touch it. Some rituals that Jews do are bar mitzvahs and bat mitzvahs. They are when girls (12 years old) and boys (13 years old) become adults in the eyes of the Jewish religion. Some holidays that Jews celebrate are Passover, Hanukah, and Rosh Hashanah.

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