Portal:Religion

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The Religion Portal

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Religion is the adherence to codified beliefs and rituals that generally involve a faith in a spiritual nature and a study of inherited ancestral traditions, knowledge and wisdom related to understanding human life. The term "religion" refers to both the personal practices related to faith as well as to the larger shared systems of belief.

In the larger sense, religion is a communal system for the coherence of belief—typically focused on a system of thought, unseen being, person, or object, that is considered to be supernatural, sacred, divine, or of the highest truth. Moral codes, practices, values, institutions, traditions, and rituals are often traditionally associated with the core belief, and these may have some overlap with concepts in secular philosophy. Religion can also be described as a way of life.

The development of religion has taken many forms in various cultures. "Organized religion" generally refers to an organization of people supporting the exercise of some religion with a prescribed set of beliefs, often taking the form of a legal entity (see religion-supporting organization). Other religions believe in personal revelation and responsibility. "Religion" is sometimes used interchangeably with "faith" or "belief system," but is more socially defined than that of personal convictions.

More about religion...

Selected article

A shaman doctor of Kyzyl.
Shamanism refers to a range of traditional beliefs and practices similar to animism that claim the ability to diagnose and cure human suffering and, in some societies, the ability to cause suffering. This is believed to be accomplished by traversing the axis mundi and forming a special relationship with, or gaining control over, spirits. Shamans have been credited with the ability to control the weather, divination, the interpretation of dreams, astral projection, and traveling to upper and lower worlds. Shamanistic traditions have existed throughout the world since prehistoric times.

Shamanism is based on the premise that the visible world is pervaded by invisible forces or spirits that affect the lives of the living. In contrast to animism and animatism, which any and usually all members of a society practice, shamanism requires specialized knowledge or abilities. It could be said that shamans are the experts employed by animists or animist communities. Shamans are not, however, often organized into full-time ritual or spiritual associations, as are priests.

Selected picture

St. Joan of Arc at the Notre Dame Cathedral, where she was beatified.
Credit: Steven G. Johnson

Joan of Arc, also known as Jeanne d'Arc, was a national heroine of France and is a canonized saint of the Roman Catholic Church. She asserted that she had visions from God which told her to recover her homeland from English domination late in the Hundred Years' War.

Selected religious figure or deity

Shrine of Bahá'u'lláh
Mírzá Husayn-`Alí (Persian: میرزا حسینعلی‎) (b: 1817 - d: 1892), who later took the title of Bahá'u'lláh (Arabic: بهاءالله‎ "Glory of God") was the founder-prophet of the Bahá'í Faith.

He claimed to fulfill the Bábí prophecy of "He whom God shall make manifest", but in a broader sense he also claimed to be the "supreme Manifestation of God" referring to the fulfillment of the eschatological expectations of a prophetic cycle beginning with Adam, and including Abrahamic religions, as well as Zoroastrianism, the great Dharmic religions, and others. Bahá'ís see Bahá'u'lláh as the initiator of a new religion, as Jesus or Muhammad — but also the initiator of a new cycle, like that attributed to Adam.

During his lifetime, Bahá'u'lláh left a large volume of writings. The Kitáb-i-Aqdas, and the Book of Certitude are recognized as primary Bahá'í theological works, and the Hidden Words and the Seven Valleys as primary mystical treatises.

Did you know...

  • ...that the word, Christian, only appears three times in the Bible?
  • ...that the Qur'an is the only book that has been completely memorized by Muslims (hafiz) all around the world for nearly 14 centuries?
  • ...that in Shinto, the family is seen as the main mechanism by which traditions are preserved? Their main celebrations relate to birth and marriage.

On this day...

July 31:

Selected quote

An iconic Buddha figure inside a lotus blossom.
Subhuti asked the Buddha: "What should one who wants to travel the Bodhisattva path keep in mind?"

The Buddha answered, "A Bodhisattva should keep this in mind: All creatures, whether they are born from the womb or hatched from the egg, whether they transform like butterflies or arise miraculously, whether they have a body or are purely spirits, whether they are capable of thought or not capable of thought: All of these I vow to help enter nirvana before I rest there myself!"''

Selected scripture

An 11th century Targum, an Aramaic translation of the Hebrew Bible,Tanakh
Tanakh (Hebrew: תנ״ך) (also Tanach, Hebrew pronunciation: [taˈnax] or [təˈnax], or Tenak, is an acronym that identifies the Hebrew Bible. The acronym is based on the initial Hebrew letters of each of the text's three parts:

1. Torah תורה meaning "Instruction". Also called the Chumash חומש meaning: "The five"; "The five books of Moses." Also called the "Pentateuch." The Torah is often referred to as the law of the Jewish people.
2. Nevi'im נביאים meaning "Prophets." This term is associated with anything to do with the prophets.
3. Ketuvim כתובים meaning "Writings" or "Hagiographa."

The writings are then separated into sections, for example; there are a group of history books namely, Ezra, Chronicles and Nehemiah. Others include the wisdom books these are: Job, Ecclesiastes and Proverbs. Poetry books; Psalms, Lamentation and Song of Solomon. Lastly there are other books, Ruth, Esther and the book of Daniel. The Tanakh is also called מקרא, Mikra or Miqra, meaning "that which is read."

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