Professor Terri Parker
When people hear the word religion, some clam up or immediately get defensive and protective over what they feel religion is/means to them or what they profess their own faith to be. I have to admit I didn’t want to take this class because of my own biases and fear of being preached to but as our text states through a quote stated by Martin Luther King, Jr “Science investigates; religion interprets. Science gives man knowledge which is power; religion gives man wisdom which is control”. The study of religion allows us to understand where our modern day tradition derived from and understand who we are as a society. To fully understand modern day culture we should look into what religious tradition say’s, what it does, and how it organizes.
Tradition: What it says
Religion is something that has been a part of man for generations as far back as it can be recorded. It is a part of a person’s belief systems that identifies and acknowledges that we are here because of a higher and grater power than our selves. Religion allows man to define what is good and what is bad, it give us a sense security and a foundation on which to grow and approve upon. The teachings of the main stream religions such a Christianity was passed down through stories and different sermons that have been put in to a text format and through the years has been translated from its Hebrew text to King James to many other versions that modern man could understand with little to no interpretation.
In cultures such as with the Native Americans and Hawaiians the teachings of their native faiths were passed down through stories, dances, artistic expression. Even to this day the Hawaiians still hulu dance which is a form of their religious expression and heritage. These dances tell stories about their God or gods, to the outsider it is just a beautiful form of art and to them it is a way to become one with God.
Tradition: What it does
Religion can have a powerful affect over a person life and way of life. Such as prayer in many religions this is the one act that allows a person the ability to talk to their God and express their thanks, ask for guidance, to make requests, or just to talk to him/her/them. The Muslim faith requires its believers to pray five formal prayers a day. Fajr is their pre-dawn prayer that is given in remembrance of their God (2012). Dhuhr is their prayer that is prayed at noon; which is to remember God and to ask for guidance (2012). Asr their afternoon prayer, this is prayed during the most busy time as people end their day a few minutes is set aside to again remember God and the grater meaning of their lives (2012). Maghrib is prayed at sunset, this is another prayer of the remembrance of God (2012). Isha is prayed in the evening as they go to bed to remember God’s presence, ask for guidance, ask for his mercy, and seek his forgiveness (2012). Prayer for Muslims is a way of life and it is at the heart of what who they are and how they relate to their God.
Tradition: How it organizes
Leadership is a common thread among many religions. Such as with many Christian faiths and churches the congregation is lead by a pastor then you have your…