Religion“a system of beliefs and practices that attempts to order life in terms of culturally perceived ultimate priorities.” - Stoddard and Prorak “perceived ultimate priorities” often translate into a list of things a follower “should” do and ways a follower “should” behave.
• Religion lies at the heart of nationalism-e.g. Middle East, Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Kashmir, Afghanistan, etc.• Religion in many non- western areas practically constitutes culture.• Religious cultural landscapes-churches, temples, mosques, shrines, cemeteries, statues, veils, turbans, beards and scars
Key Characteristics of Religion• Set of doctrines or beliefs relating to a god or gods.• Structure or hierarchy of officials• Rituals for: – Birth – Death – Reaching adulthood – Marriage – Prayer – Routine services on a Fri, Sat. or Sun.
• Impact of religion- calendars, holidays, architecture, place names, slogans on coins or flags.• A major forces in combating social ills and promoting – Education – Medicine and health care – The arts• But also – Blocked scientific study – Oppressed dissidents – Supported imperialism – Kept women inferior
Religions are divided into• Branches-a large and fundamental division within a religion-such as Catholic, Protestant and Orthodox branches of Christianity.• Denomination-a division or a branch that unites a number of local congregations into a single administrative body- Baptist, Lutheran, Methodist denominations of Protestantism• Sect-has several meanings- – A relatively small group that broke away from an bigger group or – An organized ecclesiastical body or – A dissenting or schismatic religious body or – A religious denomination-such as sects of Islam
Classifications of Religions• Universalizing religions – religions that actively seek converts because members believe they offer belief systems of universal appropriateness and appeal.• Ethnic religions – religions whose adherents are born into the faith and whose members do not actively seek converts.
Classifications of Religions• Monotheistic religions – worship a single deity.• Polytheistic religions – worship more than one deity, even thousands.• Animistic religions – belief that inanimate objects posses spirits and should be revered.
Religious Typology• Monotheistic-belief in 1 god• Polytheistic-belief in many• Animistic-objects have spirits-trees, mountains, rivers• Global or Universal-found all over the world-see converts-aim to be universal• Evangelical-religions that seek new converts• Cultural religion-limited to a national culture or a single region-Shinto, Daoism, etc.
Religions of the World• Shamanism – a community faith tradition in which people follow their shaman, a religious leader, teacher, healer, and visionary.
Where did the Major Religions of the World Originate, and How do Religions Diffuse?
From the Hearth of South Asia• Hinduism – originated in Indus River Valley over 4000 years ago. * ritual bathing, karma, reincarnation sacred text: Vedas sacred sites: Ganges River social manifestation: caste system diffusion: through South Asia and into Southeast Asia
Hinduism• Ranks next in size after Islam, but it the oldest organized religion.• No bureaucracy-but does have holy men.• Vedas or stories, but not a book like the Qu’ran, Bible or Torah.• Concentrated in South Asian hearth.• Polytheistic-thousands of gods-many cults-much fragmentation.
From the Hearth of South Asia• Buddhism – splintered from Hinduism 2500 years ago. Originated in a region from Nepal south to the Ganges River area. * anyone can achieve salvation, reach enlightenment founder: Siddartha (the Buddha) sacred sites: stupas diffusion: most strongly into Tibet in the north and into East Asia
Buddhism• Originated in India as a reform movement of Hinduism.• Founded by Siddhartha Gautama or the Buddha in 5th cent. BC.• A strongly regional faith-it remains strong in SE Asia, China and Japan, but died out in India.• Four Noble Truths and the Eight Fold Path are the guiding principles.
Buddhismis mixed with local religions in some places. In Japan,Buddhism is mixed with the local religion, Shintoism. Shinto Shrine In Kyoto, Japan, this Shinto shrine is visible after walking through a torii – a gateway usually formed by two wooden posts and topped by two horizontal beams.
Shintoism• A Japanese ethnic religion based on animism and shamanism.• Was modified by introduction of Buddhism- closely related today-many Japanese practice both.• Reverence for nature and the land-emperor seen as divine.• Belief in kami or spirits• Used by militants as a nationalistic religion in 1930s to unify the country in war time.
From the Hearth of Huang He (Yellow) River Valley• Taoism – originated in China more than 2500 years ago * oneness of humanity and nature founder: Lao-Tsu sacred text: “Book of the Way” social manifestation: Feng Shui diffusion: East Asia
Chinese Religions• Confucianism-mainly a philosophy of life founded by K’ung Fu-tze in 6th cent. BC• Became a state religion of China-emphasized duty, social order and respect of others• Daoism or Taoism “the Way” founded by Lao Zi, a reverence and harmony with nature-easily co- existed with Confucianism and Buddhism
From the Hearth of the Eastern Mediterranean• Judaism – originated in Southwest Asia about 4000 years ago. * first major monotheistic religion, covenant between God (one God) and Abraham (the chosen people) sacred text: Torah founder: Abraham sacred sites: Jerusalem (Western Wall), land between the Mediterranean and the Jordan River social manifestation: Zionism diffusion: into European cities during the diaspora, into N. America during WWII, into Israel over last 50 years
Judaism• One of the world’s oldest religions• Monotheistic religion that evolved in Southwest Asia• 3 branches-Orthodox, Conservative and Reformed• Not evangelical-does not seek converts• Concentrated in Israel, but widely scattered in Middle East, North Africa, Russia, Ukraine, Europe and the Americas
Shamanism & Traditional Religions• Community faith and traditional religion which centers around a shaman- religious leader, healer, visionary.• Small isolated groups in Africa, SE Asia, East Asia and Native America• Traditional religions in Africa believe in a god creator and provider as well as spirits and an afterlife.
From the Hearth of the Eastern Mediterranean• Christianity – originated in Southwest Asia about 2000 years ago. * monotheistic religion, follow teachings of Jesus to achieve eternal life sacred text: Bible founder: Jesus (son of God) sacred sites: Bethlehem, Jerusalem split in the church: * split into Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic churches in 1054 * Protestant sect split off in 1400s and 1500s diffusion: into Western Europe, and then world wide during colonialism and after.
Christianity• It has the largest number of followers and is the most widely dispersed with 1.6 billion or 40% of the population• Roman Catholicism is the largest segment and is found in Europe, North American and Latin America.• Protestantism dominates in Northern Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.• Eastern Orthodox is found in Eastern Europe, Russia and Ethiopia.
First Split in Christianity, 1054 CEWestern Roman empire = Roman Catholicism Eastern Roman empire = Eastern Orthodox
•The Eastern OrthodoxChurch makes up 14% ofChristianity and is a loosecollection of 14 self-governing churches inEastern Europe and theMiddle East.•To the right are the spiresof St. Basil’s Cathedral inthe Kremlin of Moscow.Notice the Orthodox crosson the onion-domed spire.
From the Hearth of the Eastern Mediterranean• Islam – originated on Arabian peninsula about 1500 years ago. * monotheistic religion, revelations Muhammad received from Allah, Five Pillars. sacred text: Qu’ran founder: Muhammad sacred sites: Mecca, Medina, Jerusalem split in the church: * shortly after Muhammad’s death, split into Sunni Muslims (great majority) Shi’ite Muslims (concentrated in Iran) diffusion: across Arabian peninsula, across North Africa, into Spain and also east into Southeast Asia
Islam• Islam is the 2nd largest and fastest growing religion with 1 billion followers.• It has 2 main sects or divisions-Sunni, the majority and Shiite centered in Iran & Iraq.• It is dominant in North Africa, Southwest Asia and extends into Central and Southeast Asia
Nation of Islam• Founded in 1930s as an African- American modified form of Islam.• Ideology of nationalism and modified Islam founded on the principle of freeing blacks from white oppression.• 1950s –60s Malcolm X his militant speeches increased followers• Over 7 m. Muslims in the US, about 1 million are Nation of Islam Muslim.• Louis Farrakhan’s anti-semitism brought negative attention.
Government Impact on ReligionThe Soviet Union:- Had an official policy of atheism- Discouraged religious practice- Drew boundaries for political control that separated ethnic groups in small areas
Armenia and AzerbaijanSoviet Union’s divide-and-diminish plan
Disposition of the Deceased -Each religion approaches the disposition of the deceased indifferent ways, and cultural landscapes reflect the religioustraditions. Hinducrematorium in Mombasa, Kenya
Religion’s impact in history and culture isevident in its centrality in many places Antwerp, Belgium
Jewish neighborhoods in European Citiesthe Old Jewish Cemetery in Prague, the Czech Republic
Switzerland concentrations of Catholics and Protestantsby canton and commune
Minaret(for call to prayer)stands on the SabahState Mosquein Kota Kinabalu,Malaysia
Diffusion of Islaminto Europelarge mosque in Paris,France
Rise of Secularism• Secularism – indifference to or rejection of organized religious affiliations and ideas. - Where is secularism on the rise and why?
The Rise of Secularism• World wide 4/6 billion adhere to a religion• Separation of Church & State a new concept• Today in the Developed World religion has declined in importance• Secularism is most common in urban, industrialized nations• Anti-religious ideologies like communism discouraged organized worship
Migration plays a large role in the diffusionof religions, both universalizing and ethnic.As Europe becomes more secular, migrantsfrom outside of Europe continue to settle inthe region. Imagine Europe 30 years fromnow. Predict where in Europe secularism willbe the most prominent and where religiousadherence will strengthen.
How is Religion seen in the Cultural Landscape?
Sacred Sites and Pilgrimage• Sacred Sites places or spaces people infuse with religious meaning.• Pilgrimage purposeful travel to a religious site to pay respects or participate in a ritual at the site.
Sacred Sites and PilgrimageVatican City-Pope John Paul II greeted pilgrims in St.Peter’s Square
Sacred Sites and RitualsAt Saint Declan’s Holy Well in Ardmore, IrelandPilgrims hang scraps of clothing as offeringsThis practice is common at sacred sites in Far EasternRussia
Sacred Sites of JerusalemJerusalem is sacred to three major religions:Judaism (Western Wall)Christianity (Church of the Holy Sepulchre)Islam (Dome of the Rock)
Sacred Landscapes of HinduismHinduism – pilgrimages follow prescribed routes, and rituals are followed by millions.Varanasi,India on theGanges Riverwhere Hindusperformmorningrituals.
• The Ganges is a sacred river to Hindus, a symbol of life without end. Pilgrims come from all over to bathe in its holy waters.
• As Shiva destroys the Universe with fire, Hindus cremate their dead.
Sacred Landscapes of BuddhismSwedogon Pagodo inYangon, MyanmarEight hairs of theBuddha are preservedunder the dome (chedi)
• Buddhism came to Tibet from India in the 8th century. Tibetan Buddhism is a mixture of Tantric and other Mahayana teachings developed further by spiritual leaders or monks called lamas.• A prayer wheel contains a mantra, a prayer or chant that is repeated many times. Each turn of the wheel counts as a prayer said and merit gained.
Sacred Landscapes of ChristianityCatholic ChurchesAre often located in thecenter of European cities,with spires reaching farabove the other buildings.
Spanish Catholic names are found in the South West
Sacred Landscapes of ChristianityProtestant ChurchesThis church inSingapore is a Churchof England church incity surrounded byBuddhists, Hindus,and Muslims
• Roman Catholicism is the largest branch of the Christian faith. The Vatican in Rome is the headquarters of the Papacy and a powerful symbol to Catholics around the world.• European cities were dominated by the spires of great cathedrals and churches until the 20th century.
Protestant & Catholic Landscapes in the United StatesScandinavian Lutheran Church St. Mary’s Catholic Church
A public bus in Port-au-Prince,Haiti Store front church in Toronto, Canada
Sacred Landscapes of IslamMuslim Mosques-Dome of this mosque in Isfahan, Iran demonstratesthe importance of geometric art evident in Muslim architecture.
The Hajj-Pilgrims circle the holy Kaaba in the GrandMosque in Mecca, Saudi Arabia during the Hajj.
The Dome of the Rock, with its gilded dome and octagonalbase, stands in Jerusalem.After the Great Mosque at Mecca and the Prophet’s tomb atMedina, it is Islam’s third holiest site.According to Muslim tradition, the rock at its center was the •.point from which the Prophet Muhammad visited heavenone night in 619.
Review states of the Middle East & North Africa Before the Test
•The crescent, seen ontop of many mosques,originally signified thewaxing of the moon.It is associated withspecial acts ofdevotion to God.•The star and crescentappear on many flagsof countries that aremainly Muslim.
Landscapes of SettlementsIsraelis have had a policy of building settlementsfor Jews in the Occupied Territories
Landscape of the Gaza Strip, 2005In 2005, the Israeli government pulled out of the Gaza Strip, burningdown Jewish settlements and handing control over to Palestinians.
The West Bankwith a the proposed security wall, parts of which the Israeli government has already built.
The Horn of AfricaAmharic (Coptic)Christianity is incentral EthiopiaIslam diffused intothe Horn of AfricaIndigenous religionsremain in pockets
The Former YugoslaviaGenocide & Ethnic Cleansing
Identities are tied to Northern IrelandReligion, but aredeepened by:Economic- colonialexperiences &activity spaces(segregation)Boal’s studies inNorthern Irelanddemonstrate thatsolving a religiousconflict is typicallynot about theology; itis about identity
Religious Fundamentalism & Extremism• Religious fundamentalism – a return to the basics of their faith. found in Christianity, Judaism, and Islam• Religious extremism – fundamentalism carried to the point of violence. found in Christianity, Judaism, and Islam
Islamic Extremists and Jihadan Islamic holy war against the West
Boal’s studies in Northern Ireland demonstrate thatsolving a religious conflict is typically not abouttheology; it is about identity. You are assigned thepotentially Nobel Prize-winning task of “solving” theconflict either in Northern Ireland or in Israel andPalestine. Using Boal’s example, determine how youcan alter activity spaces and change identities to createthe conditions for long-lasting peace in one of thesemajor conflict zones.