Here you will learn more about the five major world religions we’ve included a short description for each.
In Christianity, one believes in one god and that the god is divided into three parts. It’s called it’s trinity. The three forms of God are “the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.” The Father is God and the Son is Jesus.
Christianity is the largest religion in the world and has about 2 billion followers. The three biggest branches of Christianity are Protestant, Orthodox and Catholic. The Catholic and Orthodox Church are the two original parts, they are the eastern and western parts of the Christian congregation founded in Jerusalem about 2000 years ago. The Catholic was developed with its center in Rome while the Orthodox was made up of the eastern parts of the Roman Empire.
Judaism has an estimated 15 million followers around the world. It represents 0.2 percent of the world’s population.
In Judaism one believes in one god.
The Chosen People
You may not depict God or pronounce his name instead. You write his name YHWH and pronounce it Jehovah. According to Judaism, God has chosen the Jews for his people, which means that they have special rights and obligations. If you are Jew, you believe in the Old Testament.
One can say that it is the first part of the Christian Bible. Unlike other world religions, Judaism is much more than a religious consensus. The Jews are a people with history from 3000 years back in time. Many Jews do not count entirely religious, but they still count as part of the Jewish people. Abraham is considered to be the first Jew. The Jewish equivalent of church is a synagogue.
Islam has about 1.5 billion followers around the world it represents about 21% of the world’s population. The word Islam means submission.
The Holy Book
Islam has a holy script called the Quran. People that follow Islam are Muslims and in Islam you go to the mosque. The mosque is the equivalent of the Christian Church. The two biggest branches of Islam are Sunni, which has 950 million followers and Shia which has 130 million followers. Muslims believe that Allah revealed the Quran of Mohammad, the Last Islamic Prophet.
Buddhism is based on the teachings of a man named Siddharta Gautama. He is more famously known as Buddha. Buddha was born 2500 years ago in a small kingdom named Kosala in northern India. Originally he was known Prince Siddharta Gautama of Sakyaklan.
The Buddha had everything he could wish for, he was rich and a prince. But the Buddha sought more than that, he wanted to leave the palace and find the meaning of life. One night when everyone slept, the Buddha left off on his journey.
After several years of study, the Buddha had mastered most meditation techniques and ascetic exercises. But the Buddha realized that none of those exercises gave him the understanding he wanted to achieve.
The Buddha was, at this time, in the city of Uruvela (Current Bodh Gaya in the state of Bihar). The Buddha sat down beneath a tree to meditate. He sat there all night until the morning star rose. Then the Buddha reached the awakening. Nirvana, that many Buddhists strive to achieve. When he reached Nirvana, Siddharta became officially a Buddha, which means “The wake up”.
Siddharta, now becoming Buddha, believes that he has not received inspiration or orders from a higher power or from god to become a Buddha, his knowledge being entirely human.
Buddha was 35 years old when he reached Nirvana and spent the remaining 45 years of his life traveling around India and teaching people about his philosophy, which he called Dharma.
All is One
One of the main concept of Buddhism is that all the beings and phenomena of the universe are interconnected and are connected to each other. Buddha often talked about being dependent on nature and how nature gives us all we have.
Buddhism is a religion where psychological insight and philosophy makes a large part of the religious philosophy. The modern forms of meditation, originates from Buddhism.
When, how and where Hinduism was created, nobody knows. It is believed to have originated in India. Hinduism, however, exists in all continents but is practiced mainly in India and Southeast Asia.
In the whole world there are about 800 million Hindus in total. Hinduism has no founder, nor is it governed centrally by a church / organization or sect. Hinduism has several different religious writings, but the most important are the Vedas. The scriptures are written in Sanskrit. The statutes are divided into four parts:
Hinduism is a very old religion, probably the oldest still practiced today. Its roots begin in ancient culture around the Indus River in northern India, presently Pakistan, around 2500-1600 years ago.
Hinduism got its name from the 19th century British when they colonized India. Hinduism means India’s thought system / view. The people themselves called their teachings for santana dharma (the eternal doctrine). Which means that it’s always been there.
Hinduism has many different gods devoted to different occasions, we will cover these later on. One of these gods is called Vishnu. He’s usually called the keeper as he has control over the fate of man.
Each god has its own attributes (a distinctive sign), more about this later, you may have seen the famous elephant god Ganesha? You know it’s Ganesha because he has an elephant head, It’s his most famous attribute.