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Chapter 1 Key terms

World Religions

Ancestor Veneration The reverence or worship of ancestors
animism animism Religion with beliefs that everything in nature is alive with an invisible spirit that gives each thing in nature its living impulse and power
apocryphal Secondary texts not given by revelation but set forth by religious figures to be instructive for faith
apologetics Writings that consists of the use of rational arguments in the defense of a particular faith tradition against skeptics and critics
belief A cognitive affirmation or assertion that a given statement is true or that something is a matter of fact
canonical Texts regarded by religious authorities as given by divine revelation
clergy The class of trained religious professionals who perform religious rites for the people or on behalf of the people
cosmological argument A line of reasoning to prove the existence of God; comes in two forms: Everything that moves is set in motion by something else, and every effect has a cause
creed A confession of faith often recited in a liturgical service
deism A form of theism that denies the claim that God works miracles by intervening in the laws of nature
doctrine An official and authoritative teaching that guides the faith and practice of the members of a particular religion
dogma A doctrine that is viewed as being above reproach and obligatory for believers
ethics Norms or principles of virtue and character that pertain to moral duties, obligations, and rights that prescribe how humans ought to treat one another, animals, and our environment
faith A belief that requires emotional commitment to invisible divine reality
fundamentalist interpretation A method of interpreting scripture that tends toward selectivity, inflexibility, intolerance, and literalism
heretics People who interpret scripture in radically novel ways that appear to undermine the basic teachings of the orthodox
interpretation A method for understanding the meaning of a text
liberal interpretation A method of interpreting scripture that uses a variety of methods and considers many forms of scripture, including myths, legends, parables, proverbs, to understand sacred texts
magic theory Theory that postulates that the earliest form of religious practice consisted of the use of magic
monism Belief that holds that all reality is of one kind of substance
monotheism The doctrine or belief that there is only one God
mystical interpretation A method of interpretation that tries to uncover and unveil hidden teachings in sacred texts
mystics People who, through prayer, fasting, and self-denial, seek union with God
myth Story that uses religious language to discuss the gods and the interactions between gods and human beings
norms Rules governing the proper or accepted performance of actions
ontological argument An argument that infers the necessary existence of God from the idea of God
original monotheism Belief that holds that monotheism preceded polytheism
orthodox interpretation Belief system that preserves the earliest historical beliefs and practices of the founders of their religion
polytheism The view that there are many gods
profane Everything that is not sacred
prophet A person who speaks on behalf of God to the people
religious language Language that plumbs the depths of human experience to give linguistic expression to the mystery and paradox of the unutterable
religious symbols objects that function similarly to metaphors in that they employ natural objects or artifacts to signify abstract concepts or metaphysical objects of religious faith
reward Something beneficial given as recognition of praiseworthy and meritorious actions
rites of passage Rituals that celebrate important stages of human growth and development
rituals Prescribed and predictable patterns of worship
sacred Persons, places, animals, plants, or things that are viewed as holy or supernatural
scripture Texts that define the beliefs and worship of a deity or many deities
shaman A holy man or woman of a primal religion that serve as intermediaries between the human world and the spirit world
skepticism An attitude of doubt regarding any knowledge of a topic
teleological argument Theory that uses an analogy about the design and purpose of human made objects to explain the design and purpose in nature
theism Belief system that maintains the general claim that God exists
theodicy The rational attempt to solve the problem of evil or to justify God’s existence in the face of human suffering
theologians Scholars who through their writings, teaching, and public speeches clarify the doctrines of a particular faith
Created by: BJHughes707



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