Chapter 1 - An Invitation to the Study of World Religions Flashcards

Terms
STUDY
PLAY

Terms in this set (...)

Atheism
perspective that denies the existence of God or gods
Brahman
(braah-mun; Sanskrit, "expansive") For monistic Hinduism, the supreme, unitary reality, the ground of all Being; for dualistic Hinduism, Brahman can refer to the supreme God (e.g., Vishnu).
Buddha
(bood-dha; Sanskrit, "the Awakened One") A fully enlightened being.
cosmology
understanding of the nature of the world that typically explains its origin and how it is ordered
empathy
the capacity for seeing things from another's perspective, and an important methodological approach for studying religions
Exodus
The escape (or departure) of Israelite slaves from Egypt as described in the Hebrew Bible (c. 1250 b.c.e.).
Globalization
The linking and intermixing of cultures; any process that moves a society toward an internationalization of religious discourse.
Henotheism
the belief that acknowledges a plurality of gods but elevates one of them to special status
Icons
Painted images of Christ and the saints, icons are used extensively in the Orthodox Church.
Inquisition
The investigation and suppression of heresy by the Roman Catholic Church, the inquisition began in the twelfth century and was formally concluded in the middle of the nineteenth century.
Islam
(is-lahm; Arabic) Lit. "submission"; specifically, the religious tradition based on the revealed Qur'an as Word of God.
Mecca
The city in which Muhammad was born; place of pilgrimage for Muslims.
Modernization
The general process through which societies transform economically, socially, and culturally to become more industrial, urban, and secular; any transformation of societies and cultures that leads to the abandonment of traditional religious values.
Monism
the belief that all reality is ultimately one
Monotheism
The belief in only one god
Moses
The legendary leader and prophet who leads the Israelite slaves out of Egypt, Moses serves as a mediator between the people of Israel and God in the Torah and is later viewed as Israel's greatest prophet.
Multiculturalism
the coexistence of different peoples and their cultural ways in one time and place
mysterium tremendum and fascinans
The contrasting feelings of awe-inspiring mystery and of overwhelming attraction that are said by Rudolf Otto to characterize the numinous experience.
mystical experience
A general category of religious experience characterized in various ways, for example, as the uniting with the divine through inward contemplation or as the dissolution of the sense of individual selfhood.
myth
A story or narrative, originally conveyed orally, that sets forth basic truths of a religious tradition; myths often involve events of primordial time that describe the origin of things.
Nicene Creed
A profession of faith formulated by the Councils of Nicea (325) and Constantinople (381), the Nicene Creed articulates the Christian doctrine of the Trinity.
Nirvana
(nihr-vaah-nah; Sanskrit, an "extinguishing" or "blowing out") The ultimate goal of Buddhist practice, nirvana is the extinguishing of desire and the suffering it causes.
Nontheistic
term denoting a religion that does not maintain belief in God or gods
numinous experience
Rudolf Otto's term for describing an encounter with "the Holy"; it is characterized by the two powerful and contending forces, mysterium tremendum and fascinans.
Pantheism
The belief that the divine reality is identical to nature or the material world.
Polytheism
The belief in many gods
Purgatory
In Roman Catholicism, purgatory is an intermediate state between earthly life and heaven in which the debt for unconfessed sin is expiated.
revealed ethics
truth regarding right behavior believed to be divinely established and intentionally made known to human beings
ritual
formal worship practice
Roman Catholic Church
One of the three major traditions within Christianity (along with Orthodox and Protestantism), the Roman Catholic Church, which recognizes the primacy of the bishop of Rome, or pope, has historically been the dominant church in the West.
saint
A saint is a "holy person" (Latin Sanctus). Veneration of the saints and belief in their intercession on behalf of the living is an important feature of Roman Catholic and Orthodox Christianity.
Samsara
(sum-saah-ra; Sanskrit, "continuous flow") The continuing cycle of birth, death, and rebirth; also, the this-worldly realm in which the cycle recurs.
Secularization
the general turning away from traditional religious authority and institutions; any tendency in modern society that devalues religious worldviews or seeks to substitute scientific theories for religious beliefs.
Shinto
(shin-toh) The Way of the Gods. Traditional Japanese religion that acknowledges the power of the kami.
Theistic
term denoting a religion that maintains belief in God or gods
Tirthankaras
the Jain spiritual heroes, such as Parshva and Mahavira, who have shown the way to salvation; synonymous with jinas
Transcendence
the divine attribute of being above and beyond anything human beings can know or imagine
Transtheistic
Term denoting a theological perspective that acknowledges the existence of gods while denying that the gods are vital with regard to the most crucial religious issues, such as the quest for salvation.
Urbanization
The shift of population centers from rural, agricultural settings to cities.
Yang
(young) Lit. The south-facing side of a mountain, representing the energy that is bright, warm, dry, and masculine.
Yin
Lit. the north-facing side of a mountain, representing the energy that is dark, cold, wet, and feminine.
Zen
(See Chan/Zen)