Religion has many meanings and it can be difficult to agree upon an operational definition. A definition can involve: 1) religion is human involvement in what is considered the realm of the sacred; 2) It is expressed in thought, action, and social forms; 3) It is expressed in ritual; 4) It constitutes a total system of symbols with deep meanings; 5) It is a path of ultimate transformation. The practice of religion is a fundamentally human activity, leading scholars to questions why this should be so. One of the founders of anthropology, Sir Edward B. Tylor argued that religion originated in animism, (from anima, “spirit”) from the experiences of ancient peoples in death and dreams. Then, Sir James Frazer collected a massive amount of data from ancient and indigenous cultures and argued that religion originated in magic. Later, Sigmund Freud argued from psychoanalysis that God is a projection of a father-figure growing out of the human need to feel secure and the feelings of love-hate-fear we feel. Karl Marx argued it exists as a means of social control and pacification.
Religions & Beliefs: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Zoroastrianism, Bahá’í Faith, Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Sikhism, Taoism (Daoism), Confucianism, Falun Gong, Shinto, Shugendo, Tenrikyo, Seicho-no-Ie, PL Kyodan (Church of Perfect Liberty), Aum Shinrikyo, Oomoto, Shinbutsu Shugo, Cao Dai, Cheondoism, Mandaeism, Mormonism, Jehovah's Witnesses, Rastafari, Wicca, Neo-Paganism, Thelema, New Age, Unitarian Universalism, Satanism, Atheist, Agnostic, Heaven’s Gate (UFO Suicide Cult), Scientology.
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