World Religions 101 study guide
Phenomenology- a discipline within philosophy that has affected many other disciplines. -It is the study of science of experience. A descriptive science, wanting to know what experience is. -trying to define what is true
-the national attitude needs to be bracketed off to allow the experience to speak for itself. -scienceline that always has the same results.
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Edmond Husserl- book title is Ideas. Founder of phenomenology. •main thing about experience is that it is intentional. Consciousness is always intending. -led to many other sub developments
William James-, founder of the school of pragmatism. Wrote the varieties of religious experience. Wants to show how each religion works. originator of pragmatism. Wanted pragmatism to apply to nature as well. -does it work?
-he defines religion as what works for them
-religion is workable
-pragmatism: talks about the truth of what works (practical) if something is true than it works.
Rudolph Otto- picked up Husserl’s method and applied it to religious experience. •his religious experience definition is subjectively: the experience of awe and Objectively: the holy other, meaning power and understanding beyond the ordinary. Ottos book title: the idea of the holy
-religious objects- can be an event.
-religious ppl- he calls the atmosphere the Numinous – the radiance holy objects have about them.
Semiotics- just beginning since 20th century. Study of signs, wanted to talk about every type of sign that has ever existed. To understand reality, all thinking begins with the signs that precede them. Before u get to the meaning of the religion u have to understand the meaning of the sign itself. Feelings form before ideas.
C.S Pierce- originator of semiotics. Agreed with James about what works Talks
but added something new: the world of signs. Ideas are products of signs. First come the signs then the ideas.
Charles Darwin- natural selection, evolution is unpredictable. Life as we know it. Trying to describe how we got to here.
Stuart Kuaffman- brings Darwin and C.S Pierce together. When evolution is at that point with new possibilities b/c the environment is different, it is unpredictable where it is going next. -adjacent possibles- are there because someone put them there or b/c they are random.
Luisen(y)o creation story- separation between emptiness above and emptiness below. Out of the sexual reunion of the two is the creation of the earth. The sky, kivish, is maleness, and atakvish is femaleness. Kivish(above) Atakvish(below)
-before he dies he says when I die burn my body and said if you come out and look up 3 days from now you will see me b/c I’m coming back. and so wiyot became the moon. -what are they doing up there- they don’t see the big dipper. They see a three fingered hand reaching down from the sky. The sky is turning
Wiyot- original creature. Watched the wanahut in the creek and noticed that the wanahut was flat with only two dimensions, unlike the other creatures. The wanahut sees the wiyot watching her so she puts a curse on the wiyot to die. Wanahut- mother of the world of frogs. (protofrog)
Miercea Eliade- most impressive scholar in world religions
Hierophany- sacred power flows on an axis.
Gabriel Marcel- difference between problems and mysteries. Religions generally speaking about mysteries
Frazier- describes religions as evolutionary phases. The tree periods: 1. world of magic
2. religion- way of changing nature replaced magic
3. science replaces religion
Problems and mysteries-
Mana- power talking about basic religions. In terms of invisible power (p15)
Fetish- Ritual tools. Teach doesn’t think it relates with animals but book does.
Taboo- (35) something to avoid b/c it offends the spirits.
Ex- Touch a dead body
Native American church
Trance induction- ritual, makes ppl in an extraordinary state of consciousness. Pre historical society the susceptibility was much higher. (hypnotism) Kris dance- daggers, conflict between witch and dragon. bites a live chicken head.
Black elks great vision as follows: every piece fits into a lesson of how to live. West
A. sacred color of the west- black
B. natural power of west- thunderstorm
C. spiritual power of west- double power: power to destroy/kill and the power of living again. D. ritual power of west- tool is the arrow and bow
E. sacred messenger of west- thunder
A. sacred color- white
B. natural power- snow storm
C. spiritual power- power of purification. The snows purify the world and the
weak do not survive D. ritual tool- a double tool but boils down to an herb. A sacred herb called the blackout, they are winter berries. E. sacred messenger- white goose. There are no white geese in America native. East
A. sacred color- red
B. natural power- dawn and sunrise
C. spiritual power- peace, rainbow, sun rising
D. ritual tool- peace pipe
E. sacred messenger- morning star
A. sacred color- yellow
B. natural power- weeds/plants (growth)
C. spiritual power- wisdom
D. ritual tool- sacred stick/ tree
E. sacred messenger- buffalo
Sun dance- sacred stick- ritual tool for power of south. Suspended from a tree until hooks tear thru skin and fall to ground.
Sir James Frazer-
Ludwig Feurbach- idea of projection, God is the projection of you. -2 books: essence of religion and essence of Christianity
Karl Marx- famous phrase- religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature -religion is real- emotional. Puts energy into emotion instead of actions to change society
Friedrich Nietzsche- has a book called Thus Spoke Zara Thustra- who was the first monotheistic god. Nietzsche used zara as spokesperson to insult religious people
Sigmund Freud- projecting father or parent figure into god. – future of allusion is his book. Psycho analysis- believes if we have problems to solve
them is free association. Take off of hypnosis.
Karl Jung- student of Freud. Psychoanalyst, he believed dreams were made of archetypes. Saw religion as creator of symbols (archetypes) which are ppl trying to solve problems.
Julian Jaynes- wrote The origin of consciousness in the breakdown of the bicameral mind. His theory is that when ppl were becoming consciencesness the two parts of their brains talked to themselves and the person heard them talking to each other.
Know- dates, and whats unusual about religion at time: find in book Neanderthal religion
Cro- magnon religion
Petroglyph- scratching or hacking into hard surface. Used for art and civilization.
49-50 find in book: African
Gestalt- german word. Mind as a projecting instrument, always intentional. What you see. Shape, pattern, configuration.
•THREE basic types of religion, and consciences itself
1. Hinduism-Eastern religion. problems are separated and solutions is wholeness. Atman- (individual consciousness) appearance of ones soul.
Brahman- (universal consciousness) is the star filled in, don’t see the parts anymore. Problem is the part and the reality is making the part apart of the whole. Ram-dass: awareness. Maya- tries to separate them
In all three of these religions unconsciousness is the power (Buddhism, tao, and Confucianism) The guru- empowered persons in Hinduism, specialize in absorbing the atman and Brahman. The sages- empowered in Taoism
The Chun-tzu- in Confucianism, correct the imbalance in society.
3. Western religions
Holistic- imminence, part of a whole. Wholeness, Unification, parts of things in relation to whole. Opposed to isolated.
Interactive- Balance, how things interact to make the whole
Homeostasis- things in relation to each other
Ecstasies- state of being beyond, going to a categorically different place and experience.
Holography- science that believes in one total picture when cut up into
smaller pictures it still remains same.
Ecology- result of influence of western world
Confluence- what happened when two rivers flow together. Blending of two separate rivers becoming one.
Convergence- two things meeting but not becoming the same thing.
Emergence- found everywhere.
Non-locality- can talk about a particular place without talking about every place.
Agape- Love that reaches out in unpredictable ways in order to change the “other” meaning of love -focuses on doing love for others
Ram dass- awareness.
•our isolation, loneliness is the problem
3 different ways to think about “this dream” from his book:
model 1- all the parts of the dream are you – cliff, child, not just me. child that I am is apart of me that I am ignoring. Child w/in me
model 2- conversation is proposed to help the child on the cliff but then he said let me do it myself. Inner relationships among these parts was the
dialogue needed to be established. A system- is interactive and the parts are interacting with each other without becoming each other. Problem is the lack of interactivity within the system.
model 3 – dramatic qualitative change. Furthest away from model 1. Become who you are by the difference u make, preoccupied by difference opposed to similar.