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Thursday, 29 November 2012 11:55

study guide -- final

Written by David Sheppard
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5 Main world religions- Basic beliefs/practices of each

Christianity, Islam ( Muslim), Buddhism, Hinduism   



Secular Humanism

Religious practice in America









Main regions of US  and characteristics  : West, Southwest, Midwest, Northeast, South

 Urban--- Suburban--- Rural- characteristics of each

Migration pattern in US


Agnostic ­­­­ One who believes that the existence of God can neither be proven nor unproven. Therefore they do not believe in a God or Goddess.

Atheist  One who positively does not believe in the existence of a God or Goddess.

   Buddhism  The fourth largest religion in the world. Founded in 535 B.C. by Siddhartha Gautama, who was believed to be a prince of India. They believe in reincarnation and emphasize virtue, good conduct, morality, concentration, meditation, mental development, discernment, insight, wisdom, and enlightenment.

Catholic  Members comprise the largest Christian church in the world with over one billion adherents. Most believers live in Europe, South America, and North America.  The numbers of Catholics in Africa and Asia have been growing in recent years. Catholics believe that Jesus founded their Church and that the Apostle Peter was the first in the line of Bishops leading to the current Bishop of Vatican City. The Pope is the spiritual and political leader of Roman Catholics.

Members of the _ Roman Catholic Church   who believe that the Pope in Rome is God’s visible representative on earth and the rightful leader of Christianity.

­­­ Hinduism  The major religion of India and the third largest religion in the world, with over 750,000 adherents and as many as 1,000,000 in the United States. Unlike Christianity and Islam, Hinduism does not limit itself to a single religious book of writings, or to one God. Hinduism relies on a number of sacred writings and a number of gods. They believe that the goodness of an individual’s life will determine how he or she will be reincarnated.

 Islam The second largest religion in the world which is still growing in numbers and influence. “Islam” means to submit to the will of Allah or God and is derived from the same Arabic word as “peace.” Islam offers hope and salvation to the righteous and God-fearing individuals of all religions. Muslims believe that the Qur’an (Koran) is the final message delivered to his prophet Muhammad. The holy writing contains laws, moral precepts, and narratives guiding the lives of nearly one fifth of the world’s population.

    Allah  God in Arabic. It is the term used for God by Muslims and Arab Christians.

   Muslims   (also spelled Moslem) are the adherents of Islam. Estimates of Muslims are as high as 1.3 billion in the world, and the highest estimates of     

   Muslims in the United States are approximately 7,000,000. Only about 20% of the world’s Muslims live in the Middle East. India and Indonesia have   

   the largest numbers of Muslims, with about 175 million each.

Protestants  The general name given to an extremely diverse group of Christians, who may differ slightly or greatly from one another. Together, they form the second largest Christian group in the world after Roman Catholics. Protestants are centered primarily in Europe and North America. The hundreds of Protestant groups evolved out of the Reformation in the 1500s led by Martin Luther against the Catholic Church. Protestants share some important beliefs and values with Roman Catholics, such as the belief of only one God and the Trinity (God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit). They differ in their views of the authority of the Pope and the ways that people relate to God.

Secular humanists A non-religiously based philosophy promoting man as the measure of all things. Typically rejects the concept of a personal God and regards humans as supreme. Secular humanists tend to see God as a creation of man, rather than man being a creation of God.

Intelligent design             A theory that only an intelligent being could have created a natural world so complex and well ordered as ours. Some, if not most supporters of the evolution theory, view intelligent design as a new term for creationism or creation science.

  Creationist The term advocated by conservative Protestants who support the teaching of the Biblical account of creation in public schools in addition to or in place of the theory of evolution.