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animistic religion

the beleif that inanimate objects, such as hills, trees, rocks, rivers, and other elements of natural landscape, possess souls and can help or hinder human efforts on Earth

monotheistic religion

religions that believe and worship one god

polytheistic religion

Religions that worship more than one God

ethnic religion

a religion identified with a particular ethnic group and largely exclusive to it

universal religion

religion that attempts to appeal to all people, not just those who live in a particular location

syncretic religion

separate religions that combine into a new religion; often borrow from the past and the present.

traditional religion

a religion that has originality and is not modernized


a doctrine that rejects religion and religious considerations

Caste System

a social structure in which classes are determined by heredity


lowest class of people in the caste system of Hinduism, do all the dirty work of society


the force generated by a person's actions that determines how the person will be reborn in the next life


embodiment in a new form (especially the reappearance or a person in another form)


a member of the highest of the four Hindu varnas


a policy for establishing and developing a national homeland for Jews in Palestine


the dispersion of the Jews outside Israel


One of the two main ethnic groups within Jewish Culture.


cultural tradition made up of descendants of Jews who moved to Spain and Potugal in Western Europe


A group of Islamic religion that believes that its religious leader should be chosen based on heredity.


A branch of Islam whose members acknowledge the first four caliphs as the rightful successors of Muhammad

Religious fundamentalism

religious movement whose objectives are to return to the foundations of the faith and to influence state policy

Interfaith boundary

The boundaries between the world's major faiths.

Intrafaith boundary

The boundaries within a major religion.


a holy struggle or striving by a Muslim for a moral or spiritual or political goal

Sharia Religious Law

system of Islamic law that is based on the Quran

Ethnic cleansing

the mass expulsion and killing of one ethic or religious group in an area by another ethnic or religious group in that area


the classification of being male or female


the act of certifying or bestowing a franchise on

Longevity gap

the gap between the life expectancy of men and women

Maternal mortality rate

Number of deaths per thousand of women giving birth.

Female infanticide

the intentional killing of baby girls due to the preference for male babies and from the low value associated with the birth of females

Dowry deaths

the bride is brutally beat or killed for her fathers failure to fulfill the marriage agreement

Female genitalia mutilation

Complete or partial removal of the clitora on girls under the age of eleven.

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