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Commonalities In Religion Essay

1567 words - 6 pages

Many people accept that the world revolves around religion. Though still many would disagree, everyone has to believe something. Why not embrace it? After the mere idea of religion is accepted, another look must be taken at the true core of religion. Are all religions the same? Are they all inspired by one true religion? Many religions share basic values, ideas, and ethical codes such as the role of a god or ultimate figure, common ideas about the nature of evil, and a way of salvation and eternal life. The process of identifying differences in religions that seem to share innumerable commonalities is a very important part of establishing a worldview.
Perhaps the most evident commonality in many religions is the emphasis on a god or all-powerful being. Like the world revolves around religion, religion almost always revolves around a key figure–or a lack thereof. In Hinduism, for example, there are numerous gods. Hinduism can be best described, not as religion, but as a series of thousands upon thousands of philosophical trends which consists of three main patterns. The first of these patterns is Henotheism (also known as the religion of the ancient Vedas), which points to the proposition that many gods exists but there is one prominent being that obtains more power than the others. However, the second view, pantheism, reflects the idea that there is one ultimate god, but it is an impersonal, transcendent being. The final point of view, dualism, suggests that there are two all-powerful beings (Valea). Though Hinduism attributes great emphasis to Hindu gods, it does, in fact, offer recognition to an Almighty God (similar to the Christian God of the Bible.) However, Hindus do not believe that God is specifically male or female because God is beyond any comprehensible boundary of form, color, or shape. God, in Hindu, is often viewed as an all-powerful Gigantic One who commands all of humanity. God can be personal and one has access to worship God, not completely out of fear, but also out of love. It is believed that fear draws an individual to worship, but love completes the relationship. This viewpoint is considered to offer a basis for Hindus to pursue an otherwise inconceivable being. Hinduism supports the worship of a God with and without form because the two are considered synonymous in the Hindu culture. There is no evil figure against God, such as Satan. However, Hindu beliefs infer that one endures either happiness or opposition according to their deeds from the past; this belief is known as Karma. While Hindus have different and complex views of an all-powerful being, they seek to understand the concept of God (Shaivam).
Another exceedingly popular religion, Buddhism, also has complex views of one, omnipotent figure. In today’s world, there are two credible forms of Buddhist belief, conservative and liberal. The conservative branch, more formally known as the Theravada School, claims to have successfully maintained the pure, unaltered...

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