Nature of Religions and Belief
Define the following characteristics
• Beliefs and Believers
• Sacred texts and writings
• Rituals and ceremonies
There are various characteristics that define a religion. These characteristics are the foundations in which religions are based upon and all interact to create a dynamic, unique, living religion, which are used to answer the basic questions of life.
The first characteristic to be examined is beliefs and believers. This characteristic is the more complex one of them all. It is the belief in a deity or in a power beyond the individual that often defines a religion. A religion may have the belief of one God (monotheistic), more than one God (polytheistic), spirits, angels demons, ancestors (Aboriginals in particular) and many other beliefs. Beliefs are often about how earth and humans came into being and there purpose of life and about the relationship that us as humans share with the world and higher beings, which depends on whether the religion has a transcendence or immanent view.
Sacred texts and writings are also essential in establishing a religion. These texts are believed to have been written by the deity or one that was inspired by the deity of that religion, hence why it is considered to be sacred. Three main types of sacred stories are; myths, about the creation of the universe, Legends about sacred and important figures and Parables that have layers of meaning that we try to base our lives upon its teachings.
Ethics are the codes that followers of that religion live by and conduct what is morally correct in society hence, which is why it changes with every religion. These morals are often originated from sacred texts, ancestors and so on.
The last characteristic explored is Rituals and ceremonies. Rituals are ceremonies that have significant religious meaning to a religions belief. They are events that are often recurring and are a prescribed pattern of religious conducts. Within...