3) World Religions

Hindu Marriage 2

A Hindu marriage ceremony. (Creative Commons photo. Attribution to author and info can be found here)

In this chapter we will be explaining basic information about the development and beliefs about world religions. This may seem strange to some but it is an absolutely vital building block in understanding the motivations for many vital historical events.

Without this knowledge students would have an extremely difficult time grasping concepts like the crusades, the protestant reformation, backlash against the scientific revolution and countless others. students are informed very specifically before starting the chapter that this is a short historical/sociological explanation of religion and in no way is meant to take the place of whatever belief system they may follow at home. I start with a discussion about how a historical view may differ from that of a religious viewpoint simply because of the different focus of the two. It is my sincere hope that students will finish this chapter with a better understanding of religion in a historical context that will be used later in the explanation of various historical concepts.

While I have researched a great deal for this chapter I am by no means a religious scholar so if there is ever a time you believe something was explained incorrectly or insufficiently I would very much like to be aware of it. Please feel free to contact me if any such case should arise.

This chapter is one that I am still in the process of developing from the content I have in other formats. Until I am able to make this a Web-based content structure (like that of Ch. 11) I have provided a link below to my class notes. This is only accessible to students in my course, but this will change soon.

Essential Question

  1. In what ways are Dharmic Religions different from those of the Abrahamic Faith?
  2. In what ways do far eastern religious beliefs (including Buddhism) differ from other faiths in terms of the concept of hell?
  3. Compare and contrast law systems within the religions covered in class? Is it true that they all say very similar things?
  4. How does the caste system align with Hindu thoughts in terms of samsara? Was this the original intent?
  5. Which religions seem to be the friendliest in regards to science? Why?

Chapter Resources

Chapter Notes

Review Assignment

Review Material

Mnemonic Devices For Religions

Review Videos