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DSST World Religions

Absolutist Someone who holds rigid, literal, exclusive belief in the doctrines of their religion.
Agnosticism The belief that if there is anything beyond this life, it is impossible for humans to know it.
Animism A worldview common among oral religions (religions with no written scriptures) that sees all elements of nature as being filled with spirit or spirits
Anthropocentrism The assumption that the whole universe revolves around the human species.
Atheism Belief that there is no deity.
Ascetic A person who practices extreme self-discipline in order to develop spiritually.
Canon Authoritative collection of writings, works, etc., applying to a particular religion or author.
Charisma A rare personal magnetism, often ascribed to a founder of a religion.
Conversion A change in one’s religious direction by adopting a new belief.
Cosmogony A model of the evolution of the universe.
Creed A formal statement of the beliefs of a particular religion.
Cult Any religion that focuses on worship of a particular person or deity and viewed as strange or what may be considered dangerous
Denomination A comprehensive scheme, plan or conception.
Dogma A system of beliefs declared to be true by a religion.
Dream Time The timeless time of Creation, according to Australian Aboriginal belief.
Druids Anceient Celtic priests
Eschatology Beliefs about the end of the world and of humanity.
Exegesis Critical examination of a religious text.
Fasting Abstaining from food as part of a spiritual discipline.
Fundamentalism Describes a group of people who try to live by a strict and literal interpretation of scripture. Insistence on what people perceive as the historical form of their religion, in contrast to more contemporary influences.
Heaven In many religious traditions, the home of God or the gods and the place where the good will go when they die.
Hell A place or state of eternal torment reserved for the wicked.
Heretic A member of an established religion whose views are unacceptable to the orthodoxy.
Gnosis Intuitive knowledge of spiritual realities.
Heyoka "Contrary" wisdom or a person who embodies it, in some Native American spiritual traditions.
Immanent Present in Creation.
Incarnation Physical embodiment of the divine.
Inclusivism The idea that all religions can be accommodated within one religion.
Indigenous Native to an area.
Liberal Flexible in approach to religious tradition; inclined to see it as metaphorical rather than literal truth.
Monasticism The religious traition of withdrawing from the world to devote oneself to prayer and meditation.
Monotheistic Believing in a single God.
Mystic One who values inner spiritual experience in preference to external authorities and scriptures.
Mysticism People who use their own spiritual experiences to interpret scripture. They seek a personal encounter with the supernatural to guide them.
nontheism A position unconcerned with the supernatural, not asserting or denying the existence of any deity.
Occult Involving the mysterious, unseen, supernatural.
Orthodox Adhering to the established tradition of a religion.
New Age A loose collection of religious movements dating from the 1960’s, that mixes Eastern and Western spiritual traditions, and focuses on the healing energies of the natural world.
Pilgrimage A journey to a sacred place.
Pantheism The belief that everything in the universe is divine
Parable An allegorical story.
Penance An act of self-punishment to atone for wrongdoings.
Pluralism An appreciation of the diversity of religions.
Polytheisim Believing in many deities.
Reincarnation Rebirth of the soul into a new body after death of the old body.
Repentance Turning away from wrongdoing, expressing sorrow for sins, and resolving to do better.
Ritual A repeated, patterned religious act.
Calumet A long-stemmed sacred pipe used primarily by many native peoples of North America; it is smoked as a token of peace.
Sect A sub-group within a larger tradition.
Sacred The realm of the extraordinary, beyond everyday perceptions, the supernatural, holy.
vision quest In indigenous traditions, a solitary ordeal undertaken to seek spiritual guidance about one's mission in life.
Voodoo Latin American and Caribbean ways of working with the spirit world, a blend of West African and Catholic Christian teachings.
Transcendent Existing outside the material universe.
Transpersonal Referring to an eternal, infinite reality, in contrast to the finite material world.
Theistic Believing in a God or gods.
Symbol Visible representation of an invisible reality or concept.
Syncretism A form of religion in which otherwise differing traditions are blended.
Santeria The combination of African and Christian practices which developed in Cuba.
Shaman A "medicine person," a man or woman who has undergone spiritual ordeals and can communicate with the spirit world to help the people in indigenous traditions.
Orisa The Yoruba term for a deity, often used in speaking of West African religions in general.
Divination A foretelling of the future or a discovery of the unknown by magical means.
Libation The act of pouring a liquid as an offering to a god.
Taboo A strong social prohibition.
Sin The breaking of holy laws.
Ragnarok In the Norse tradition, the end of the world and the beginning of a new heaven and a new Earth.
Trickster gods In native religions, mischievous gods who change shape and appearance to show that the world can be a surprising and unpredictable place.
Totem Animal (or image of animals) that is considered to be related by blood to a family or clan and is its guardian symbol
Secularism The modern tendency to separate religion from everyday life and to see values and rules for living as taken from the experience in this world, not from divine revelation.
Analogy The direct comparison of the sacred with something that is familiar.
Apocrypha Books that are not part of the official canon of scripture, but which are still considered sacred.
Deity God or object of worship
Hermeneutics The bias or method of interpretation that we bring to the interpretation of scriptures.
Liberal Take a flexible approach to religion. Liberals do not feel that people today are required to act like people in the past, but instead believe that scripture is only a guide.
Oral Scripture Sacred stories of primal religions.
Religion A system of belief that includes sacred stories, doctrines, rituals, ethics and a moral code and that attempts to connect people with the sacred
Scripture The sacred writings of a religion that are considered authoritative, because people read scripture to learn what is right and wrong.
Apologetics The use of theology to defend a religion.
Doctrine A statement or teaching about the beliefs of a religion. It is based on sacred scripture and cannot be proven.
Norms The standards of behavior for a religion.
Theodicy The theological speculation about the problem of evil.
Theology The study of the divine
Theologian A person who studies the divine.
Goddess A female god
Henotheism The belief that some gods are more important that others, therefore they are more worthy of worship.
Humanism The belief that people are basically good and can save themselves.
Immanence The doctrine of immanence holds that the deity is in everything and is everything.
Materialism The belief that nothing exists apart from matter.
Monism There is one unified sacred reality beyond the many forms of gods & goddesses. All reality is the same.
Created by: pinetreeacademy on 2012-02-08

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