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Religion is the adherence to codified beliefs and rituals that generally involve a faith in a spiritual nature and a study of inherited ancestral traditions, knowledge and wisdom related to understanding human life. The term "religion" refers to both the personal practices related to faith as well as to the larger shared systems of belief.

In the larger sense, religion is a communal system for the coherence of belief—typically focused on a system of thought, unseen being, person, or object, that is considered to be supernatural, sacred, divine, or of the highest truth. Moral codes, practices, values, institutions, traditions, and rituals are often traditionally associated with the core belief, and these may have some overlap with concepts in secular philosophy. Religion can also be described as a way of life.

The development of religion has taken many forms in various cultures. "Organized religion" generally refers to an organization of people supporting the exercise of some religion with a prescribed set of beliefs, often taking the form of a legal entity (see religion-supporting organization). Other religions believe in personal revelation and responsibility. "Religion" is sometimes used interchangeably with "faith" or "belief system," but is more socially defined than that of personal convictions.

More about religion...

Selected article

The original Nauvoo Temple of the Latter-day Saint movement built in Nauvoo, Illinois.
The Latter Day Saint movement is a religious movement founded primarily by Joseph Smith, Jr. in the early 19th century. It is strongly restorationist, intending to transcend Protestant denominationalism by restoring what they consider to be a form of Christianity more true to the New Testament. The Latter Day Saint movement was first known as the Church of Christ, and eventually spawned many religious denominations including The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Community of Christ. A minority of these denominations refer to their doctrines, practices, and cultures as Mormonism, but others find the term inaccurate or offensive.

The Latter Day Saint movement began in the late 1820s in western New York while Joseph Smith, Jr. was dictating what he said was the translation of a book of Golden Plates buried centuries ago by a nation of pre-Columbian Christians. The movement grew rapidly after this book was published in 1830 as the Book of Mormon and used by missionaries as a proselytizing tool, after a succession crisis, many of the Latter Day Saints emigrated to what was then Mexico (now Utah) to establish a new colony led by Brigham Young. Other smaller groups established organizations in Missouri, Illinois, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, many of which united around Smith's son Joseph Smith III in 1860 in Missouri. Most Latter Day Saint denominations existing today have some historical relationship with either of these two groups.

Selected picture

Shroud of Turin
Credit: Secondo Pia

The Shroud of Turin (or Turin Shroud) is an ancient linen cloth bearing the image of a man who appears to have been physically traumatized in a manner consistent with crucifixion. The image can not be seen on the shroud with the naked eye and for several centuries the shroud had been displayed without it, the image was first observed in 1989 on the reverse photographic plate when amateur photographer Secondo Pia was unexpectedly allowed to photograph it. Some believe it is the cloth that covered Jesus when he was placed in his tomb. Skeptics contend the shroud is a medieval hoax or forgery.

Selected religious figure or deity

An example of allāh written in Arabic calligraphy.
Allah is the Arabic language word referring to "God", "the Lord" and, literally according to the Qur'an, to the "God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob" in the Abrahamic religions. It does not mean "a god", but rather "the Only God", the Creator deity featuring in the Quranic creation myth, and it is the main term for the deity in Islam. However, "Allah" is not restricted to just Islam, and used by Christians and Jews according to geographic region.

Allāh is found in the Qur'an and in Arabic translations of both the Tanakh and the Gospels and even in the Indonesian translations of the Bible. Christians believe that Allāh is ath-Thaluth al-Muqaddas - The Holy Trinity,

Did you know...

  • ...that the Akilam is the longest Ballad form of literary work in the world?
  • ...that Jain philosophy is a codification of eternal universal truths which at times lapse among humanity, but later reappear through the teachings of human beings who have gained enlightenment or omniscience?
  • ...that in Shinto, the family is seen as the main mechanism by which traditions are preserved? Their main celebrations relate to birth and marriage.

On this day...

Selected quote

Love hinders death. Love is life. All, everything that I understand, I understand only because I love. Everything is, everything exists, only because I love. Everything is united by it alone. Love is God, and to die means that I, a particle of love, shall return to the general and eternal source.
Leo Tolstoy, Thoughts of Prince Andrew in War and Peace, Bk XIII, Ch. 16

Selected scripture

The Bhagvad Gita is Lord Krishna's counsel to Arjuna on the battlefield of the Kurukshetra.
The Bhagavad Gita (Sanskrit: भगवद्‌गीता - Bhagavad Gītā, "Song of God" or "Divine Song") is an ancient Sanskrit text composed of 700 verses from the Mahabharata (Bhishma Parva chapters 25 – 42. Krishna, as the speaker of the Bhagavad Gita is referred to within as Bhagavan (the divine one), and the verses themselves, using the range and style of Sanskrit meter (chandas) with similes and metaphors, are written in a poetic form that is traditionally chanted; hence the title, which translates to "the Song of the Divine One". The Bhagavad Gita is revered as sacred by the majority of Hindu traditions, and especially so by followers of Krishna; in general speech it is commonly referred to as The Gita

The content of the text is a conversation between Krishna and Arjuna taking place on the battlefield of Kurukshetra just prior to the start of a climactic war. Responding to Arjuna's confusion and moral dilemma, Krishna explains to Arjuna his duties as a famous warrior and Prince and elaborates on a number of different Yogic[1] and Vedantic philosophies, with examples and analogies. This has led to the Gita often being described as a concise guide to Hindu philosophy and also as a practical, self-contained guide to life, during the discourse, Krishna reveals his identity as the Supreme Being Himself (Bhagavan), blessing Arjuna with an awe-inspiring glimpse of His divine absolute form.

The Bhagavad Gita is also called Gītopaniṣad as well as Yogupaniṣad, implying its status as an 'Upanishad'. While technically it is considered a Smṛti text, it has singularly achieved a status comparable to that of śruti, or revealed knowledge.


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