Taxonomy of Religions

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					Taxonomy of Religions

 Flow Charts to Believe In!
Taxonomy =
the science or technique of classification

To present and argue for a taxonomy,
 one must develop a variety of
 categories to function as vectors of
Example: Animal-Vegetable-Mineral
    Vectors of Religious Taxonomy
• Distance between Sacred and Human Realms
• Number of Deities
• Philosophic Cosmology
• Scope of Membership and Recruitment
• Social Organization (Basic Types)
• Social Identities and Locations (class, race, status,
  gender, education, etc.)
• Types of Practices and Modes of Knowledge
  (literate/oral, legal/mystic, ritual/philosophy)
 The Largest-Scale Taxonomy Of
        World Religions
• Polytheistic, nature-based paganisms:
   – Indigenous religions of North and South America,
     Africa, Australia, northern Asia, Pacific Islands, and
     pre-Christian Europe, plus ancient paganisms of
     Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, Rome
• Karmic Religions:
   – Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism
• Abrahamic Monotheistic Religions of the Book:
   – Judaism, Christianity, Islam
• Other:
   – Confucianism, Sikhism (hybrid)
    Functional Elements of Religions
                   • COSMOLOGY
•   Rituals        • Doctrines     • Exemplars
•   Ethics         • Symbols       • Philosophy
•   Supernatural Beings      • Material Culture
•   Institutional Continuity       • Mythology
•   Generational Continuity (passed to children)
•   Clergy and Authorities
•   Not all elements are found in every religion
                 Definition of Religion
                  by Clifford Geertz
• “Religion is defined as (1) a system of symbols
  which acts to (2) establish powerful, pervasive,
  and long-lasting moods and motivations in men
  by (3) formulating conceptions of a general
  order of existence and (4) clothing these
  conceptions with such an aura of factuality that
  (5) the moods and motivations seem uniquely
• From a religious studies perspective, all
  religions make TRUTH CLAIMS
• From the perspective of any given
  religious practitioner/adherent, they
  believe their religion knows/hold Truth
• In a religious studies classroom, we treat
  all claims about truth (such as the
  existence of God, the nature of reality) as
  “truth claims,” to remain neutral
                 Definition of Religion
                 by Paul Tillich (1886-

• “Religion is the state of being grasped by an
  ultimate concern, a concern which qualifies all
  other concerns as preliminary and which itself
  contains the answer to the question of the
  meaning of our life.”
        The Quest for Meaning
• “Human beings continually engage in the
  process of world construction and
  reconstruction in order to generate meaning
  and purpose, to maintain psychic equilibrium,
  and to assure continuity….The notion of
  quest begins with the assumption that people
  seek to maximize meaning and purpose in life,
  to erase ignorance, and to resolve
  inconsistency.” Lewis Rambo, Understanding
  Religious Conversion p. 56
 Micro- and Macro-Levels
• Religion functions at the level of organizing
  daily existence (micro), through such
  mechanisms as formulating codes of
  behavior, marking life-cycle events with
  rituals, and dictating community norms.
• Religion also functions at a larger
  ideological level by providing a framework
  for meaning, determining what is
  significant and what is inconsequential.
          Religion and Power
• There are many types of power:
  –   Political
  –   Economic
  –   Physical Power/Prowess
  –   Power to Heal
  –   Power to Control Circumstances
  –   Virtuosity = Skill (Power over the Piano!)
  –   Power over Death
            Religion and Power
• Religion can be a location for all these powers:
  – Political = Divine Kingship, hierarchy
  – Economic = Amway, Gospel of Wealth, Soka Gakkai
  – Physical Power/Prowess = Athletes and Soldiers
  – Power to Heal = Shamans, Curandera-s
  – Controlling Circumstances = Altering weather
  – Virtuosity = Mysticism, Magic
  – Power over Death = Reincarnation, Resurrection
• The word ‘significance’ is related to ‘sign’
• Cosmologies - religious world-views - recognize life-
  cycle events as significant (birth, death, war, illness,
  coming-of-age, etc.)
• Each religious world-view also accords unique
  significance to persons/events/places that would not
  be immediately understood as significant - these
  instances of created significance form
  incommensurate differences between religions
• Examples: who Jesus is to Christians, what Mecca
  means to Muslims, what Mt. Tamalpais means to
  Coast Miwok, etc.
• Word derived from
  hieros = sacred, phanos
  = to see, know
• Means any manifestation
  of the sacred
• Grand hierophany defies
  our perceived rules of
  nature (i.e. a miracle)
• Intimate hierophany is a
  deeply-felt experience
  with cosmological
  dimensions and insights
Hierophanies reveal the universe
                                   •   Moses & the Burning Bush
     Grand                         •
                                       Exodus 3: 2-6
                                       “the angel of Jehovah appeared unto

   Hierophany                          him in a flame of fire out of the midst
                                       of a bush: and he looked, and, behold,
                                       the bush burned with fire, and the
                                       bush was not consumed. 3 And Moses
                                       said, I will turn aside now, and see
                                       this great sight, why the bush is not
                                       burnt. 4 And when Jehovah saw that
                                       he turned aside to see, God called
                                       unto him out of the midst of the bush,
                                       and said, Moses, Moses. And he said,
                                       Here am I. 5 And he said, Draw not
                                       nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off
                                       thy feet, for the place whereon thou
                                       standest is holy ground. 6 Moreover
                                       he said, I am the God of thy father,
                                       the God of Abraham, the God of
                                       Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And
                                       Moses hid his face; for he was afraid
                                       to look upon God.”
                                   •   Grand hierophanies disrupt known
Raphael’s depiction of the scene       patterns of nature, thereby displaying
                                       a greater power. Grand hierophanies
                                       constitute “miracles”

“The Aurora!”
Her wonder was so strong that she had to clutch the rail to keep from falling.
The sight filled the northern sky; the immensity of it was scarcely conceivable. As
   if from Heaven itself, great curtains of delicate light hung and trembled. Pale
   green and rose-pink, and as transparent as the most fragile fabric, and at the
   bottom edge a profound and fiery crimson like the fires of Hell….In the
   evanescent delicacy she felt something…profound…it was so beautiful it was
   almost holy.”
• Lyra Belacqua, heroine of The Golden Compass, on seeing the northern lights
    • In religious studies terms, all religions are
C     socially-constructed cosmologies. A
o     cosmology interprets the universe by
      providing organizing principles. These
s     principles distinguish between what is
      significant and what is considered
m     unimportant, accidental, or inconsequential.
o   • Astronomers, physicists, and philosophers
      also use cosmology, but do so in a less
l     socially-constructed and behavior-
      motivating manner than religions. The use
o     of the term in these fields is more descriptive
      than prescriptive. In religion, cosmologies
g     often lead to normative regulation
             •   Afterlife
             •   Justice, Balance
             •   Hierarchy
             •   Stasis and Motion (Being and
             •   God/desses, Supernatural Beings
 Examples    •   Distance between Humans and
             •   Status of Animals and Nature
Cosmological •   Conflict or Harmony (War and
 Organizing      Peace)
             •   Gender, Sex, Sexuality
               • How and why am I vulnerable (to
                 illness, to failings, to death, to
                 inadequacy, to weakness)?
               • Where did I come from? Where
                 did the world come from? (origin
               • Is what I am doing valuable?
Cosmological     Positive? Significant? How do I
                 know this? (meaning questions)
  Questions    • What should I be doing? How
  faced by       does my life fit into the larger
                 story of the universe? (destiny
 Individuals     questions)
An Evangelical Christian Cosmology
• Word literally means government by
  those who are closer to, or have access to,
  the sacred.
• The religious basis for authority of all
  kinds (political, military, familial, etc.) is
  deeply rooted - watch for examples in our
  current politics, despite the USA being an
  officially secular nation.
A   Vincent of Beauvais,
    Le Miroir historial
R   15th century
    Structure of the Church
C   depicted as a building

H   Confessors and Popes

I   Apostles
R   Kings

A   Prophets
C   Patriarchs of Hebrew
H   Bible

Y   Cain and Abel
H   Illustrates God acting
    in history through
I   His people

E   Temporal yet lasting
R   Hierarchy of prestige
A   All men at building
R   site

 Centralized Authority
• While all religions have authoritative figures and
  stories/writings, some religions have a tendency to
  centralize that authority, usually in a pyramidal
• The Catholic Church, with a strict hierarchy of
  officials culminating in the Pope, is an example of
  centralized religious authority.
• Ancient city-states, from Egypt to Mexico to
  Mesopotamia, literally organized their societies
  around such centralized authority, both religious
  and political.
     Pyramidal Hierarchic Structure:
      Catholic Church as Example





With each ascending layer, there are fewer people in the category.
       Decentralized Authority
• Hinduism has multiple centers and sources of
  authority. As a result, it cannot, and does not,
  impose universal agreement in its communities, or
  in its belief system.
• Hinduism is, thus, polycentric, which means having
  many centers. This matches its polytheism.
• Catholicism, by contrast, is monocentric, which
  means it has one center. This corresponds to that
  faith’s monotheism, cosmologically.
The Double Meaning of “Religion”
• The word ‘religion’ comes from the Latin
  word religio, a verb meaning “to bind”
• “To bind” has a double meaning in
  English, and in Latin: it can either mean
  a constriction or a connection, a fetter or
  a bond
• Thus, the tension that religions sustain,
  between doing good or doing ill in human
  societies, is present in the word itself
Religion and Social Organization

         How do we survive?
        How do we cooperate?
    Four Basic Types of Human
       Social Organization
• TYPE                      • SOCIAL EFFECTS
• Gathering/Hunting         • Relative equality and
                              little job specialization
• Nomadic Raiding           • Preference to young,
                              male, physically able
• Small-scale               • Relative equality and
  Agricultural (Villages)     little job specialization
• Urban (Large-scale        • Hierarchic, increasing
  Agricultural)               job specialization
 Access to Resources: Who’s
Got What, Who Gets Left Out?
• Necessary Resources    • Food, Shelter, Health
                           Care, Clothing, etc.
• Privileged Resources   • Luxury Items,
                           Servants/Slaves, Art
• Valorized Resources    • Literacy, Education,
                           Art, Prestige, Fame,
                           Happiness, Success,
                           Privacy (“A Room of
                           One’s Own”)
    Religious Cosmologies and
       Social Organization
• Religion makes cosmologies real when it builds
  institutions, articulates codes of behavior, and
  sets social expectations.
• Religion thus establishes authority.
• Authority and social institutions seek to
  maintain the existing social order, rather than
  change it; they are inherently conservative,
  meaning both that they conserve what exists
  and that they have a political bias toward
  maintaining traditional ways.
   Religious Cosmologies and
      Social Organization
• "Religion legitimates (authority) so
  effectively because it relates the precarious
  reality constructions of empirical societies
  with ultimate reality" - Peter Berger in
  The Sacred Canopy
• Meaning: religion assures us that our form
  of social organization has divine sanction.
  But, the moment one begins to reflect
  comparatively, this assurance is under
     Politics and Religion
• Politics = organization of the polis (i.e. the city).
  The political realm includes rules governing the
  people, from structures of mutual benefit (e.g. stop
  signs, which control what could otherwise become
  traffic chaos) to mechanisms of social control (e.g. a
  fence along a border, a law that jails dissidents).
  Politics often focuses on leaders of a given society -
  how they are chosen, how they maintain (or lose)
  their power, and how they exercise their power.
  Any issues that need to be negotiated between
  members of a society - from child care to education,
  from agricultural planting to war, from medical care
  to care for the environment - can be political.
     Politics and Religion
• Certain species characteristics of human beings
  make politics necessary: our long gestation and
  maturation periods, the accumulation of specialized
  knowledge that needs to be taught (such as, for
  instance, the literacy skills that enable you to read
  this slide), and the techniques for raising plants and
  animals that made larger settlements possible.
• As has already been noted, the domestication of
  animals and plants leads to social stratification -
  which also leads to a proliferation of political and
  religious forms.
            Areas of Political Concern
•   Adjudication of Conflicts
•   Security of Citizens
•   Health and Welfare of Citizens
•   Balance of Powers
•   Balancing Competing Interests
•   Methods of Leadership
•   Fairness in Economics and Trade
•   Rights and Responsibilities of Citizens
      Religion and Community
• Because religion marks many life-cycle
  moments (birth, death, illness, etc.), religion
  functions as a major way of experiencing
• Exclusive religions insist that you can only
  belong to one religion at a time; the
  monotheistic religions are insistent on this
• Inclusive religions allow for participation in
  multiple systems.
              Inclusive Religion
• “We ask for peace for the gods of our fathers, for the gods
  of our native land. It is reasonable that whatever each of us
  worships is really to be considered one and the same. We
  gaze up at the same stars, the sky covers us all, the same
  universe compasses us. What does it matter what practical
  systems we adopt in our search for the truth. Not by one
  avenue only can we arrive at so tremendous a secret.” –
  Quintus Aurelius Symmachus (345-402 CE, Roman
                  Exclusive Religion
•   “Outside the Church there is no salvation” (extra ecclesiam nulla salus) is a
    doctrine of the Catholic Faith that was taught By Jesus Christ to His Apostles,
    preached by the Fathers, defined by popes and councils and piously believed
    by the faithful in every age of the Church. Here is how the Popes defined it:
•   “There is but one universal Church of the faithful, outside which no one at all
    is saved” (Pope Boniface VIII, 1302).
•   “We declare, say, define, and pronounce that it is absolutely necessary for the
    salvation of every human creature to be subject to the Roman Pontiff.” ( Pope
    Innocent III, Fourth Lateran Council, 1215).
•   These quotes from a contemporary website:
•   The current Pope, Benedict XVI, has explicitly affirmed this exclusivist
        Authority and Force
• Religious institutions create a sense of
  religious authority
• Authority = power to command, or
  influence, thought, opinion, or behavior
• Note that authority can work through direct
  power (command) or through persuasion
  and impact
• Political authority almost always includes
  force; religious authority is more often
 can be
    Inclusive Religion in Asia
• Religious communities in extensive areas of
  Asia, including India, China, and Japan, have
  most often allowed, and even encouraged,
  inclusive religious practices and the
  participation of people in more than one
  religious system.
• For instance, in Japan, it is common for people
  to go to Shinto shrines for New Year’s Day
  celebrations, to Buddhist temples to ask
  forgiveness for their failings on New Year’s
  Eve, and to a Christian Church for a wedding.
    Politics and Religion
• If politics concerns the organization of society, then
  its alliance with religion is a natural one.
• Because religions are cohesive, organized
  interpretations of the meaning, significance, and
  structure of the universe, politics can be seen (and
  has been seen in many traditional societies) as a
  subset of religion, a micro-level of human
  organization which should reflect the macro-level of
  divine/sacred cosmology.
• Religious hierarchies and political hierarchies, while
  often separate, have also often been mutually
• Religious and political leaders can often enhance, or
  add luster to, each other’s authority.
   Five Heuristic Relationships
Between the Sacred and the Human
 • Transcendent: the sacred is much more powerful than we are, it is
   separate from us, and it is, at best, apathetic toward us
 • Interventionary: the sacred is much more powerful than we are, it is
   separate from us, and it is deeply concerned with us. This concern leads
   to its intervention on our behalf in the form of revelation or direct contact
 • Overlapping: the sacred realm and the human realm overlap in some
   places/people, in other ways the sacred extends beyond our knowing, and
   there are also areas in the human realm which are dangerously void of
 • Immanent/Pantheism: the sacred realm and the human realm are co-
   terminous with each other: everything is sacred
 • Panentheism: the sacred realm entirely contains the human realm, but the
   sacred realm is much larger than the human realm.
   Five Heuristic Relationships
Between the Sacred and the Human
 • Transcendent:

 • Interventionary:

 • Overlapping:

 • Immanent/Pantheism:

 • Panentheism:
The Overlapping Model:
 Which Side is Sacred?
Number of   •   Monotheism - a religious system which postulates that there is a
                single deity. Normally it is understood that this deity is a
                universal deity, whose acts and judgments affect the entire

 Deities    •
                world, not just those who worship this deity.
                Polytheism - a religious system which has a multitude of deities,
                related to one another in a pantheon. These deities can be
                understood as universal or local, depending on the philosophic
                outlook of the religious system.
            •   Kathenotheism - a special case of polytheism, loosely translated
                as "one-god-at-a-time-ism." Here the deities' heirarchic relation
                to each other is fluid, as the god or goddess who is being invoked
                or prayed to at a given moment is given precedence and
                supremacy over all others at that time. Also called Henotheism.
            •   Pantheism - means "all-is-god:" a religious system which
                postulates a one-to-one unity between sacred being/deity/deities
                and the universe.
            •   Panentheism - the understanding that the universe is a partial
                manifestation in unity with the sacred being/deity/deities. The
                name loosely means "all-is-god-and-god-is-more."
            •   Transtheism - a system which includes deities, but maintains
                that they are not ultimate. For example, in Jainism and
                Mahayana Buddhism the existence of deities is acknowledged,
                but human beings can transcend these deities by reaching various
                forms of enlightenment.
            •   atheism - no deity (atheism ≠ no religion; there are forms of
                Buddhism and Ethical Culture which are religions without
Philosophic Categories of Cosmology:
    How Many Things Are There
          in the Universe?
             Possible Answers Are
         1 = Monism, > 2 = Pluralism
     2 that oppose each other = Dualism
  2 Ends of a Continuum = Complimentary
Philosophic Categories of Cosmology
   • Monism - belief/theory that there is a fundamental unity
     to the substance, energy, and/or structure of the
     universe. Synonyms include "singularism" and
     "henism" ("hen" is a Greek root meaning 'one' - it is
     also present in the words "kathenotheism" and
   • Pluralism - belief/theory that there is a thorough-going
     diversity of substances, energies, and/or structures in the
   • Dualism - belief/theory that there are two fundamentally
     irreconcilable, polarized oppositional structures in the
   • Complimentarity - belief/theory which understands
     seeming opposites in a unified way, as two sides of the
     same coin, as equally necessary and characteristic of the
     nature of reality. Also called “duality.”
Continuum and Oppositional Logics
    • Complimentarity is also sometimes called
      “duality.” Complimentary systems understand
      the coexistence of life/death as paradoxical, as
      part of a continuum, and/or as transformative.
    • Nirguna/Saguna operate in a complimentary
    • Dualism and Complimentarity take oppositional
      and continuum approaches to reality,
      respectively. Dualism is best known as a ‘good v.
      evil’ cosmology. No reconciliation is possible;
      one must defeat the other. Complimentarity
      looks for reconciliation and dialectic relation, as
      in the relation between light and dark.
      Dualism and Duality
 A playful way of illustrating it!

• Dualism assumes a       Duality assumes a
Battle - it’s Hot vs.    Relation; hot and cold
Cold, and only one can   are relative concepts,
win: choose wisely!      that define each other.
               Monism &
• Monism and monotheism are not identical.
  This is because monism is about underlying
  unity more than it is about singularity.
• from Eck, page 20: “Hindu thought is most
  distinctive for its refusal to make the one and
  the many into opposites. For most, the
  manyness of the divine is not superseded by
  oneness. Rather the two are held
  simultaneously and are inextricably related.”
     Scope of a Religion’s Purview I
• Universal - Religions that assume that the human
  situation is basically identical in all
  circumstances, and that there is thus a single
  soteriological viewpoint/solution/perspective for
  all people. Thus, universal religions tend to
  proselytize. Examples include Christianity, Islam,
  and Buddhism.
• To induce or
  convince someone
  to join your
• To convert a
  person from one
  belief, doctrine,
  cause, or faith to
• Spiritual
     Scope of a Religion’s Purview II
• Ethnic - Religions which have a universal and
  unitary ontology, but which base membership and
  access to this knowledge on kinship, generational
  ties, and history of a specific ethnic group. These
  religions tend not to proselytize, yet they are
  sometimes open to new members. Examples
  include Judaism, Hinduism, and Shinto.
    Scope of a Religion’s Purview III
• Local - Religions which are built on the locality and local
  conditions in which a people live. These religions are
  specific to given geographic areas and/or to the peoples
  who live there. Thus, these religious systems are often
  co-extensive with cultural systems, and thus rarely if ever
  proselytize (though they may choose to share their
  insights with others). Their names are usually the same
  as the name for that people; thus Navajo religion, Ainu
  religion, Dinka religion. In fact, 'religion' here is a
  western scholarly distinction not made by the
   Scope of a Religion’s Purview IV
• Esoteric - World-views and/or practices within religions
  which assume that there is a special knowledge (gnosis)
  that is gained through initiation, intensive study, magic,
  material transformation (i.e. alchemy), and secrecy.
  Esoteric religious trends can be found in all traditions,
  and vary in social location from elite intellectual groups
  to revolts by the marginalized. Gnosticism,
  Manicheanism, Taoism, and Tantra are religious
  traditions that have significant and consistent connections
  with esotericism.
                               Ways of
                             Describing the
                               Joan Watts, One-6, 2008
                               Oil on Canvas

Ornate Design

 • Is the sacred best
   described by profusion,
   or ineffability?
• Philosophers of India thought the two ways
  could be held in creative tension
• Nirguna is a term that means that the
  divine/sacred cannot be accurately described,
  and therefore all qualities (because they are
  qualifications), must be avoided, or denied
• The term literally means “formless.”
• Another Sanskrit term, “neti, neti,” meaning
  “not this, not that,” is also frequently used in
  philosophic descriptions of nirguna.
• Describing the divine/sacred is an additive
  process: all that is, must be expanded
  exponentially to even begin to adequately
  describe the divine
• Flowery epithets, multiple names, grandiose
  titles, attributes and other highly positive
  qualifications are approaches to describing
  the divine through saguna
   Guidelines for Studying Religion
1. All religions look absurd from the outside, because
   they are total systems that make (seemingly) arbitrary
   editorial choices.
2. We all operate from within some totalizing system.
   One person’s superstition is another person’s religion.
   Avoid terms like superstition, fanatic, zealot, which are
3. Respect other views, and seek to understand the
   integrity of their logic. Do not treat our predecessors
   with disregard and contempt: they faced the same
   existential situation as you do.
4. Respect ≠ Agreement: you do not need to agree with or
   condone any system of thought, if you have taken the
   trouble to understand its logic.
The following charts go from the largest levels of
  categorization to subdivisions within Christianity
All groups mentioned here are large-scale named
  institutional religions
The fact that we use one unified name to refer to
  “Judaism,” “Christianity,” “Buddhism,” etc. does NOT
  mean that these are monolithic entities
 The Largest-Scale Taxonomy Of
        World Religions
• Polytheistic, nature-based paganisms:
   – Indigenous religions of North and South America,
     Africa, Australia, northern Asia, Pacific Islands, and
     pre-Christian Europe, plus ancient paganisms of
     Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, Rome
• Karmic Religions:
   – Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism
• Abrahamic Monotheistic Religions of the Book:
   – Judaism, Christianity, Islam
• Other:
   – Confucianism, Sikhism (hybrid)
The “Big Five” World Religions
  THE BOOK                 RELIGIONS
• 1) Judaism             • 4) Hinduism
• 2) Christianity        • 5) Buddhism
• 3) Islam               • These two religions
• Listed in this order     are also listed in
  to show chronology       chronology and line
  and interdependence      of descent order
     The “Little Five” Religions
•   Indian Traditions          •   Chinese Traditions
•   1) Jainism                 •   3) Taoism
•   2) Sikhism                 •   4) Confucianism
•   Both of these faiths are   •   Japanese Tradition
    of long-standing, with a   •   5) Shinto
    genealogy linking them     •   These faiths are all
    to two of the Big Five         literate, syncretized with
    (Jainism with Hinduism         Buddhism in East Asia,
    and Buddhism; Sikhism          and connected to
    with Hinduism and              indigenous traditions
            Umbrella Chart of Christianity

  Roman Catholic Church             Eastern Orthodox Christian Churches         Protestant Churches     Other Christianities
See Stylistic Distinctions Chart                                                  See Next Chartr        Latter-Day Saints
                                                                                                       Jehovah's Witnesses

               Greek Orthodox                Serbian Orthodox             Russian Orthodox

                                        Other Orthodox Ethnicities:
                                       Syrian, Serbian, Ukranian, etc.
               Taxonomy of Protestant
                                        BASIC PROTESTANT DIVISION

                                             Protestant Christianity

     Magisterial Reformation       Radical Reformation                        Anglican Reformation

Lutheranism           Calvinisms       AnaBaptists        Church of England         Puritans         Pilgrims
    The logical problem posed by
         religious pluralism
• If all religions make truth claims, and those truth
  claims do not coincide, how does an individual or a
  society reconcile that dissonance?
         Metaphors for Negotiating
           Religious Pluralism
                         •   Buffet
                         •   Describing an Elephant
                         •   Garden/Eco-System
                         •   Genres of Music
                         •   Carnival
•   Lottery
•   Chess
•   College Admissions
•   Shoes
Indigenous or “Local” Religions
• Most areas of the world also have/had
  indigenous traditions based on local
  conditions, geography, etc.
• Native American religions
• Native African religions
• European paganisms from Greece to
  Rome to Celts and Germanic peoples
• Native Australian religions
• Polynesian religions
  Indigenous Religions in Asia

• Syncretism of indigenous religions with
  Asian religious traditions is widespread
• Many elements of indigenous religions
  can be located in Hindu, Buddhist, and
  Taoist practice
• Shinto in Japan,categorized as one of the
  Little Five, is also an indigenous tradition
    Four Items for You to Track
•   Time period
•   Geography
•   Themes
•   Religious Traditions (typology)
        A few things about dates
• Centuries are ahead of dates by one;
  thus, in the year 2011, we are in the 21st
  century. The year 1999 was in the 20th
  century. The Civil War took place in the
  19th century, from 1861-1865. Etc.
• CE = AD; BCE = BC
• Remembering ballpark dates (early 19th
  century, 1960s) is often just as valuable
  as precise dates
            LET’S SHARE
• Speak loudly, clearly
• Say your name
• Share something you’ve noticed about
  religion in America
• Say something you want to learn in the
     Temporal Template: Shared Milestones
•   1492 – Columbus
•   1519 – Cortes begins conquest of Mexico 1521
•   1531 – Virgen de Guadalupe
•   1620 – Pilgrims arrive in Plymouth
•   1630 – Puritans arrive in Massachusetts
    Temporal Template: Shared Milestones
• 1776 – Declaration of Independence
• 1840-50s – Immigration of Irish
• 1865 – Slavery Abolished end of Civil War
• 1920 – Women’s suffrage (right to vote)
• 1939 – WWII (Europe, Asian) – 1941 –US enters
• 1950s – normalcy, rise of middle class, CRM
• 1960s – Vietnam war, CRM, other social
• 1980s – Green movement, fall of USSR, Reagan
• 2001 – September 11th; 2008 – election of Obama
 Map of
  Map of
Areas and
Meso-American Cultures
Cultures Map

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