World Religions Essay.

1177 words - 5 pages

The eight major world religions/philosophies are more different than similar. Examples of this can be found through comparing and contrasting Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Confucianism. There are several differences in these religions, such as; how the religion is today, their views of the afterlife, the important writings, the foundation and/or history, and their G/god(s).Christianity, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Confucianism are all major religions/philosophies. However, there is a greater amount of followers in certain groups than others. Christianity has about two billion followers and is practiced all around the world; mostly in the United States, parts of Canada, Mexico, almost all of Europe, southern Africa, the east coast of Australia, New Zealand, and several nations in South America. Confucianism only has about six million followers. It is mostly practiced in China, Korea, Japan, and Vietnam. There are about seven hundred and sixty-two million Hindus in the world. Hinduism is the dominant religion in India, Nepal, and among the Tamils in Sri Lanka. There is also followers in North America, the Caribbean, the United Kingdom, Netherlands, East Africa, South Africa, Mauritius, Malaysia, Australia, and New Zealand. The number of Buddhists is uncertain, however estimates show that there is somewhere between one hundred and fifty to three hundred million followers. This religion started in India, but then spread to China, Korea, Japan, Tibet, Sri Lanka, Laos, Cambodia, Thailand, and Myanmar. It is also practiced in some western countries.It seems as though every religion has a different view on the afterlife. Confucianism is not considered a religion, but rather a philosophy and it does not have any ideas or meanings of the afterlife. Buddhists and Hindus have somewhat similar beliefs on the afterlife. Both religions believe in reincarnation. Reincarnation is the belief that after death, one is reborn into another living being. However, their beliefs on what happens after reincarnation are slightly different. Hindus believe in a caste system. The caste system is somewhat like a social order. There are four groups of the caste system, which are called varnas. The Untouchables, a fifth group, are below the varnas. If one fulfilled his/her duties in life, they would move up a caste system, until they reach Moksa. Moksa is spiritual perfection, and ends reincarnation. Buddhists do not believe in a caste system, they believe in karma and dharma. Karma is the belief that all actions have positive or negative consequences. This determines one's status in the next life. Dharma is the belief of being moral in life, which helps one reach Nirvana. The ultimate goal of Buddhists is Nirvana, which is the end of reincarnation. Christians have very different beliefs on the afterlife. They believe that when one dies, he/she can either go to heaven or hell. It is believed that if one lived a moral, Christ-like life, then they go to heaven. Heaven is...

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