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WORLD RELIGIONS – REL 212 World Religions | | | HINDUISM & JAINISMWEEK 2 | | Cosmogony - Origin of the Universe | Hinduism: Brahma: Birth of the universe, Vishnu life of the universe, Shiva: Destruction of the universe.P.87,89Jainism-Universe has no beginning or end has no creator or destroyer. P.124 | Nature of God/Creator | Hinduism: Cycles, Brahman the supreme spirit.Jainism: God is not the creator, no such thing as a heavenly father. Do not believe in Gods and demons. P.124 | View of Human Nature | Hinduism: Karma-Means action and the consequences of action. Every act we make, every thought and every desire we have shapes our future experiences. P.Jainism: Until it frees itself from karma the mundane soul wanders through the universe in an endless cycle of deaths and re-births. P.125 | View of Good & Evil | Hinduism: Good, light, balance, order virtue; Evil: darkness, impurity, imbalance, selfishness.Jainism: Karma: Minute particles that accumulate as we act and think. P.123 | View of Salvation | Hinduism: Moksha-The liberation from the cycle of life and death and become one with God. P101Jainism: | View of After Life | Hinduism: Samsara-Cycle of death and rebirth ends when the soul realizes it’s true nature P.101Jainism: Believe we are born again and again until we free ourselves of samsara. P.133 | Practices and Rituals | Hinduism: Birth, name giving, time of conception, braiding of pregnant mother’s hair, birth, starting education, beginning of solid foods. Puja: Honor Veneration, Murti: Representation of a Deity, Kumbha Mela – largest pilgrimage event in the world Jainism: Pilgrimages to sacred sites in Bihar, south of the Indian border with Nepal. P. 133 | Celebrations & Festivals | Hinduism: Holi-Death of winter, return of colorful spring, Divali -The happy four day festival of lightsJainism: Paryushan Mahaparva: annual festival of atonement. P.131-133 | Week 2 - Sources | Religions of the World Hinduism - National Geographic Documentary 2014 HD | Week Two: Hinduism and Jainism Powerpoint Presentation | Living Religions Ninth EditionMary Pat Fischer | | | | | | | BUDDHISMWEEK 3 | | Cosmogony - Origin of the Universe | Multiple states of existence including hell beings, hungry ghost, animals, humans and gods. All states of rebirth are imperfect and impermanent. Sentient beings, take birth again and again, caught up in the cycle of samsara, repeatedly experiencing birth, aging, suffering, and death as a result of their actions and mental defilements. By purifying their minds of greed, hatred, ignorance, and other delusions they are able to achieve nirvana, or liberation from cyclic existence and suffering. (Pages 148-149). | Nature of God/Creator | Described as a nontheistic religion. There is no God who creates the world or to whom prayers can be directed. They do not worship the Buddha. Unlike other Indian Sages the Buddha did not focus on descriptions of an unseen reality, the nature of the soul, life after death, or the origin of the universe. | View of Human Nature | The Wheel of Life and Death is a depiction of the universe where all beings reside, but it is also the universe of each individual as he or she faces samsara. | View of Good & Evil | The Buddhist understanding is that good and evil is innate, inseparable aspects of life. This view makes it impossible to label a particular individual or group as "good" or "evil." Every single human being is capable of acts of the noblest good, or the basest evil. | View of Salvation | The Noble Eightfold is the path to Liberation. It offers a way to purify the mind of afflictive emotions and avoid unwholesome actions. By following this path we can live a happy life and create causes for a favorable re-birth. Ultimately this path leads to freedom form the cycle of death and rebirth and the peace of nirvana. P-145. | View of After Life | Buddha did not focus on descriptions of an unseen reality, the nature of the soul, life after death, or the origin of the universe | Practices and Rituals | Buddhists chant, pray, meditate, eat vegetarian meals, and celebrate Buddhist holidays. Temples, halls, and roadside shrines have been built with images of Buddha before which, people bow, light candles, burn incense, offer flowers, and make aspirations and prayers. P.153 One popular ritual in Northern Thailand a network of threads attached to a large statue of Buddha is used in special ceremonies to conduct his spiritual power to the Saga, holy water, amulets or new images to be consecrated. P.155.. | Celebrations & Festivals | Since Buddha has evolved into different forms in different countries most of its festivals are not uniformly celebrated. The most important Buddhists Festival is Vesak, which marks Buddha’s birth, enlightenment, and death all of which were said to have miraculously on the same day. P.173. | Week 3 - Sources | Living Religions Ninth EditionMary Pat Fischer | REL212: The Nature of GodVideo-Stayer Blackboard | Gautama Buddha-His life and Teachings-Mocomi Kids | | What’s Buddhist about … Engaged Buddhism: David R. Loy | | | DAOISM & CONFUCIANISMWEEK 4 | | Cosmogony - Origin of the Universe | Daoism- All natural phenomena are generated by the alternation between yin and yang energies. Matter ebbs and flows, expands and contracts. The cycle of existence spontaneously moves through each of the Five Phases: Water, Fire, Wood, Metal, and Earth. All things are thus classified according to yin/yang and the Five Phases (sometimes called the Five Agents or the Five Elements). Confucianism-Confucius lived during a time of political turmoil. Independent kingdoms divided the area we know today as China, fought for dominance creating hunger displacement and death. Sought to bring peace and order to society. | Nature of God/Creator | Daoism- Taoists venerate gods, as there doesn't seem to be a place for deities in Taoist thinking.Confucianism- There is no God. He was never considered a god. | View of Human Nature | Daoism- When human nature is aligned with the rest of nature, order and harmony are the result.Confucianism- The purpose of existence is to reach one's highest potential as a human being. | View of Good & Evil | Daoism- he Principle of Yin-yang is concerned man's original nature is neither good nor evil. Confucianism- Suffering and evil are inevitable in human life, and can promote learning and growth. A mistake is not a "sin," but an opportunity to learn and do better next time. | View of Salvation | Daoism- Believes salvation is not necessary. There is nothing one needs to be saved from. Belief in salvation leads to belief in damnation. Confucianism- Emphasized the salvation of the social order by encouraging people to respect one another. | View of After Life | Daoism- Death is nothing but a return to the Tao. A practitioner of Taoism strives to render death meaningless by becoming one with the Tao. At that point, whether the person is alive or dead makes no difference. Worship of deceased ancestors. Confucianism- Assumes that the spirit of an individual lives on after death as an ancestor spirit and continues to relate to the family. | Practices and Rituals | Daoism-Taoist rituals involve purification, meditation and offerings to deities. Rituals involve the priest (and assistants) in chanting and playing instruments (particularly wind and percussion), and also dancing.Confucianism-Ancestor worship-The ritualized commemoration of communication with, and sacrifice to one's deceased relations. Acts of everyday kindness are considered rituals. | Celebrations & Festivals | Daoism-Lantern Festival, Tomb, Sweeping Day, Dragon Boat Festival, Chinese New Year, Hungry Ghost Festival.Confucianism-Ching Ming festival is celebrated 106 days after the winter solstice and families visit their ancestors or relatives' graves, Easter Monday, and Confucius birthday on September 28. | Week 4 - Sources | Living Religions Ninth Edition Mary Pat Fischer | Daoism and Confucianism Powerpoint Presentation | Confucius Makes A ComebackYouTube Video | | http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/taoism/ | Marketfaith.org | | WEEK 5SHINTO | | Cosmogony - Origin of the Universe | The Kami are known to have created the universe. The Kojiki seem confer spiritual legitimacy on the imperial throne by allegedly documenting the divine origins on the Imperial lineage. | Nature of God/Creator | Shinto gods and goddesses are called kami. The term refers to anything that is above, high, special, or unusual Refers to the essence, or internal quality or phenomena including rocks, trees, rivers, animals, people and places. | View of Human Nature | Humanity is regarded as kami’s child, thus all human life and human nature is sacred. | View of Good & Evil | The world is beautiful and full of helpful spirits. Sexuality is per se not evil, the world was created by mating deities and people have traditionally bathed together communally. Impurity is a serious problem that obscures pristine nature it may offend the kami and bring about calamities such as drought, famine, or war The idea of human sinfulness, tsumi requires purification. | View of Salvation | The concept of salvation is based on that all things have an essence, soul, or spirit known as Kami. Rather than living in heaven the kami live amongst us. Some are more powerful than others and some are deified. | View of After Life | It was believed that all who died went to a vast hellish underworld from which there is no escape. Buddhism introduced the idea of rewards and punishments in the afterlife, and death and salvation in the afterlife came to be regarded as Buddhist matters. | Practices and Rituals | Visits to the shrines in which there are more than 100,000 built to honor the kami. Ritual forms of Purification, oharai-ceremony performed by Shinto priest to sweep through the air and purify an area, Before entering a Shinto shrine people will splash water on their hands and face and rinse their mouths to purify themselves in order to approach the kami. Marriage. | Celebrations & Festivals | Make daily offerings to the kami in their home. When a new house is built the blessings of the kami are ceremonially requested. Festivals begin four months before the birth of a baby. Biggest festival celebrates the Chinese New Year, achieving certain ages, the end of winter, the spring, and fall festivals. | | Living Religions Ninth EditionMary Pat Fischer | Japan’s Shinto Traditions VideoInstructor Insight | Human Nature and Religious Practices & Rituals Week Five Lecture 1 | | Shinto religion from Japan. Week Five Lecture 2 | | | WEEK 6JUDAISM | | Cosmogony - Origin of the Universe | God brought everything into being: heaven and earth, mountains and rivers, and every living thing. God called into existence the heaven and earth. Within six days He shaped a world of order and beauty. God rested on the seventh day. He glorified it as a day of rest. | Nature of God/Creator | The fact of God's existence is accepted without question. Proof is not needed, and is rarely offered. The Torah begins "In the beginning, God created" It does not tell who he is or how he was created Judaism views the existence of God as a necessary prerequisite for the existence of the universe. The existence of the universe is sufficient. | View of Human Nature | The rabbis attributed a dual nature to human beings and placed them between earthly and heavenly creatures in the hierarchy of being. They unlike heavenly creatures whose bodies and souls are both divine, and also unlike earthly creatures whose bodies and souls come from the earth. Human beings are creatures whose souls are from heaven and whose bodies are from earth. If Jews obey God's commandments, then they act as heavenly creatures, and if not, they act like the creatures below them. | View of Good & Evil | God created the Evil Inclination, the angel called Satan, whose job it is to tempt us to do evil. Ignoring the Evil Inclination, gets you closer to God and you become more holy. By doing so, merit the reward of ultimate goodness. God also gave Commandments and the Tempting Angel tempts individuals to find reasons not to keep those Commandments. By ignoring the temptations, and fulfilling God's Commandments, we become more spiritual, and our souls gain more power over ourselves | View of Salvation | There is a gradual transition from physical death to an afterlife in which the body and spirit remain connected to one another in some way either through resurrection or immortality of the soul. According to early rabbinic folklore, transition from death to life actually begins three days after death when the soul is believed to hover over the grave hoping to be restored to the body. | View of After Life | Twelve months after death, the soul maintains a temporary relationship with body in a type of purgatory leading either to paradise, Gann Eden, or hell, Gehinnom. The condition of the soul during the twelve-month purgatory is uncertain. A spectrum of opinions ranging from the idea that it is quiescent to fully conscious with the only difference being the power of speech as well as a debate about how much the dead know of the world left behind. | Practices and Rituals | Mitzvah, 613 Commandments, Rabbinic Law, The Synagogue, Circumcision, Keeping Kosher Funeral Practices and Divorce Practices | Celebrations & Festivals | Tu Bishvat, The New Year for Trees, Pesach or Passover, Yom Ha-Shoah — Holocaust Remembrance Day, Yom Ha-Atzmaut-Israel Independence Day, Yom Kippur-Hebrew name means: Day of Atonement,Hanukkah-Hebrew name means: Dedication, Shabbat-A day of rest and enjoyment at the end of every week that religious people undertake in imitation of God, who rested on the seventh day of creation. | Week 6 - Sources | Living Religions Ninth EditionMary Pat Fischer | Maimonides’ 13 Foundations of Judaism | Video: Exodus Week 6 Other Preparation | | Calendar Jewish Holidays-http://www.interfaithfamily.com/holidays | http://www.mesora.org/13principles.html | | WEEK 7CHRISTIANITY | | Cosmogony - Origin of the Universe | Passages on creation are from Genesis chapters 1 and 2.Chapters depict the formation of the heavens and the earth, the creation of plants and animals, and the special creation of human beings clearly teach God is responsible for creating all things, including humans, | Nature of God/Creator | New and Old Testament declare there is only one God. Not just one God for this universe or many gods united in one purpose, but one God. Both Judaism and Christianity are clearly monotheistic. The Father, Son and Holy Ghost Are All God. There is something else in the Scripture. The Bible teaches God the Father, Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit are all God. The Bible teaches all three of these divine persons are equally Divine | View of Human Nature | God created human beings in the divine image, enabling humans to have some understanding of God and of God's vast and complex design. The purpose of life is to love and serve God in order to help bring about God's glorious plan for creation. Reason is a gift bestowed by God on humans and enables them to reflect on their own nature and conscience, and from that derive knowledge of God's will for creation. | View of Good & Evil | The Christian concept of sin originates in the story of Adam and Eve found in chapters 2-3 of the Book of Genesis, a story that has central importance for Christians. The story relates the creation by God of the first humans, a man and woman. God placed them in a garden called Eden, which provided for all their physical needs, as well as companionship with each other and fellowship with God. God had but one rule. In the garden stood "the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, whose fruit Adam and Eve should not eat. Adam and Eve broke the rule and ate the fruit, God banished them from the garden, condemning them and their descendants to a life of hard work, pain, disease, and eventual death, and submitting the earth itself to "bondage. Christians call this humanity's fall from innocence. | View of Salvation | Salvation is deliverance from danger or suffering. Bible uses the words saved or salvation to refer to temporal, physical deliverance, such as Paul’s deliverance from prison. God has rescued us through Christ (John 3:17).Jesus’ death on the cross and subsequent resurrection that achieved our salvation. We are saved by faith. First, we must hear the gospel—the good news of Jesus’ death and resurrection (Ephesians 1:13). Then, we must believe—fully trust the Lord Jesus (Romans 1:16). This involves repentance, a changing of mind about sin and Christ (Acts 3:19), and calling on the name of the Lord. | View of After Life | Christians also believe that human existence does not end at physical death. There is a world to come, and the consequences of sin will follow humans there. As the judge of all, God will assess each individual's relationship to Christ; people risk a sentence of eternal punishment and spiritual death, forever separated from God. Christian art and writing has vividly depicted the grotesque torture and suffering of those damned to hell. | Practices and Rituals | The most important Christian rituals are called sacraments, sacred rites that convey God's sacred power or grace. Baptism and Eucharist are the two most important sacraments. In Protestant communities, these two rites are not called sacraments, but ordinances, and are usually understood not to be channels of grace so much as acts of commemoration and symbolic identification with Christ. Baptism, the Christian rite of initiation, is a ritual cleansing with water. Jews, the early Christians integrated the ancient Jewish practice of ritual bathing into Christian practice. The Roman Catholic tradition, a Christian who is close to death may receive the anointing of the sick, or extreme unction, from a priest who prays with the sick person while anointing them with oil. Funeral rite combines the sorrow of loss with the joy and confidence Christians feel in the promise of the resurrection. At the funeral, Christians recall the brevity of life and the destiny of the soul, renewing their hope in the promise of resurrection and eternal life. | Celebrations & Festivals | Advent Season, Christmas, Lent, Holly week, Good Friday, Easter Sunday, Ascension Thursday, Pentecost Sunday, | Week 7 - Sources | Living Religions Ninth EditionMary Pat Fischer | The Expository Files- The Earliest New Testament Manuscripts | Podcast: The Origins and Impact of Pentecostalism | | Lecture 1REL212: Christian View of the Afterlife | Lecture 2-Christian viewpoint on why one should believe in God. | | | | WEEK 8ISLAM | | Cosmogony - Origin of the Universe | The whole universe was nothing but a cloud of smoke an opaque highly dense and hot gaseous composition. This is one of the undisputed principles of standard modern cosmology. Scientists now can observe new stars forming out of the remnants of that ‘smoke. | Nature of God/Creator | God is an eternal, spiritual being; not a force, but a divine person; God is one and one onlyQur’an sees Islam as carrying on true monotheistic religion that Judaism and Christianity have mostly abandoned Idolatry (shirk) – acknowledging other gods beside the one and only God considered the worst sin. | View of Human Nature | Islam, means submission or obedience to God, and the Muslim is one who submits or surrenders to God and recognizes Muhammad as God's prophet. All created things fulfill their assigned purpose by serving God. Plants and animals, rocks and minerals, rain and wind, stars and planets all naturally fulfill the purpose for which they were designed. By doing so, they worship and serve God. Everything in nature, by acting according to its design, serves God's will. In a sense, the whole universe is Muslim because it surrenders to the divine purpose. | View of Good & Evil | The recognition of "good" and "bad" should not remain theoretical or purely cognitive, but should be interpreted in terms of practical actions. People should follow what they have known to be "good" and renounce what they have known to be "bad”. Positive attitude is considered to be the gauge by which their faith is measured. In other words, people's faith is only manifested in their good or bad deeds.This importance of "good" and "bad" deeds makes God mention them in the Quran — in contexts of both inviting to the good and warning of the bad — more than 360 times, while the Prophet's sayings on it are beyond number. | View of Salvation | In the religion of Islam, the purpose of life is to live in a way that is pleasing to Allah so that one may gain Paradise. It is believed that at puberty, an account of each person's deeds is opened, and this will be used at the Day of Judgment to determine his eternal fate. The Quran, the most important text in Islam, also suggests a doctrine of divine predestination. The Muslim doctrine of salvation is that unbelievers (kuffar, literally "those who are ungrateful") and sinners will be condemned, but genuine repentance results in Allah's forgiveness and entrance into Paradise upon death. | View of After Life | The religion of Islam beliefs about the afterlife are very important. Muslims believe in the continued existence of the soul and a transformed physical existence after death. Islam teaches that there will be a day of judgment when all humans will be divided between the eternal destinations of Paradise and Hell.A central doctrine of the Quran, and one of the most important teachings of Muhammad, is the Last Day, on which the world will be destroyed and Allah will raise all people and jinn from the dead to be judged. The Last Day is also called the Day of Standing Up, Day of Separation, Day of Reckoning, Day of Awakening, Day of Judgment, The Encompassing Day or The Hour | Practices and Rituals | Akikah. An informal birth ceremony. Shadada. The marking of a young Muslim's formal entry into Islam. Marriage Ritual. Witnesses observe the groom's formal offer of marriage and the bride’s acceptance of it. Funerals and Mourning. | Celebrations & Festivals | Traditionally, Muslims celebrate two major festivals - 'Id Al-Fitr and 'Id Al-Adha. They celebrate one month of daytime fasting - Ramadan. And they also observe a day of voluntary fasting - 'Ashura, which is also an important Shiite festival. (Also compare: Sunni and Shia Muslims.)The popular festival of Mawlid an-Nabi celebrates the birthday of the prophet Muhammad, but is frowned upon as an idolatrous innovation by conservative Muslims. Most Islamic holidays either commemorate events in the life of the prophet Muhammad or are special days founded by him. Al-Hijra: Islamic New Year, Ramadan: Month of Fasting, 'Id Al-Fitr: Festival of Breaking the Fast, 'Id Al-Adha: Festival of the Sacrifice, Ashura: Remembering Shiite Martyr Husayn | Week 8 - Sources | Ashura: Remembering Shiite Martyr Husayn | Video-Muslim Practices | Video-What do Muslims believe about God? | | Living Religions Ninth EditionMary Pat Fischer | Islam and Sikhism-PowerPoint | You tube Video-What's the Difference Between Sunni and Shia Muslims? | | | WEEK 9SIKHISM | | Cosmogony - Origin of the Universe | Born in the Punjab area of South Asia, which now falls into the present day states of India and Pakistan. The main religions of the area at the time were Hinduism and Islam. Began around 1500 CE, when Guru Nanak began teaching a faith that was quite distinct from Hinduism and Islam. | Nature of God/Creator | There is only one God, God is without form, or gender, Everyone has direct access to God Everyone is equal before God, A good life is lived as part of a community, by living honestly and caring for othersEmpty religious rituals and superstitions have no value. | View of Human Nature | Human nature is rooted in self-centeredness (haumai), as opposed to the divine consciousness (gurmat) and benevolence (parupkari) that are ideal. Humans exist in Kartar's total will, which pious Sikhs understand and enact in their daily lives. | View of Good & Evil | Everything that happens is Hukam, the will of God (Waheguru). People should live their lives in obedience to God’s will. God created everything and gave people free will. Suffering is not inflicted directly by God but is permitted by God as a test of courage and faith. Suffering is appreciated for the good that it often brings out in humanity and compassion. A person’s own actions that are responsible for their suffering. Humans know the difference between right and wrong, and can make moral choices. Good actions do lead to good karma. | View of Salvation | To attain salvation one must live a honest life and meditate on God. Sikhism shows the way to attain salvation and become One with God. Sikhism instructs that you do not have to fast, abstain, go on renunciation or enter a monastery in order to meet God. All you have to do is have faith, recite the Name of God and remember Him for each possible moment. What you do while you are alive is critical, so make your decisions wisely. Furthermore, you do not have to detach yourself from this world physically, you can lead a normal family life and still be able to meet God. | View of After Life | Sikhs do not believe in an afterlife in either Heaven or Hell. Sikhism teaches that the soul reincarnates when the body dies. Sikhs believe that good, or bad actions, in this life, determine the life form into which a soul takes rebirth. | Practices and Rituals | Baptism – Amrit, Marriage - Anand Karaj, Naming of Children | Celebrations & Festivals | Naam Karan. Naming of a Child. As soon as mother and child are able, the family visits the Gurdwara. Joyful hymns are recited and a sacred sweet pudding (Karah Prashad) is prepared and distributed by the family. The reader of scriptures (Granthi) randomly opens the Guru Granth Sahib to any page and reads a hymn from that page. Sikh marriages takes place at the Gurdwara in a congregational gathering in the presence of Guru Granth Sahib and commenced according to Sikh rites. Many Gurdwaras particularly in England are registered for solemnizing marriages. Child marriage is forbidden. Funeral following a death, a full reading of the Guru Granth Sahib is commenced. Sikhs consider life to be transient and regard death as a stage in the journey towards progressive spiritual liberation. Sikhs do not believe in heaven or hell as some interim or final destination for the soul. Cremation is the preferred method for the body and ashes can be immersed in flowing water or scattered. Public displays of grief and mourning are discouraged. Remarriage is encouraged. | Week 9 - Sources | Instructor InsightsSikhism Video | Lecture I REL212: Stories | Lecture 2 The 5K’s of Sikhism | | Living Religions Ninth EditionMary Pat Fischer | www.bbc.co.uk/Sikhism | | WEEK 10NEW RELIGIOUS MOVEMENTS | Jehovah Witnesses | Cosmogony - Origin of the Universe | Founded by Charles Taze Russell, grew out of the Christian Millerite movement and has since spread worldwide. Russell's teaching that the Second Coming of Christ has already occurred Took on the name "Jehovah's Witnesses" in 1931 under the leadership of Joseph Franklin Rutherford. Departs from traditional Christian teaching in several key points, including a rejection of the Trinity and a belief that Jesus is a created being. Jehovah's Witnesses engage in strong evangelistic and missions programs as well as lifestyles based on a strict moral code of conduct. Members of local Jehovah's Witnesses congregations are expected to participate in door-to-door evangelism including distributing books and the Watch Tower magazine and attending meetings at the Kingdom Hall. | Nature of God/Creator | Believe the Bible was inspired by God and is historically accurate. Sees the Bible as the main way in which God communicates his will to human beings, and they interpret it literally. Witnesses test any religious idea or teaching against the Bible - if an idea or teaching doesn't agree with the Bible then they regard it as wrong. | View of Human Nature | Human nature is universally sinful, because all humans inherit the original sin of Adam and Eve. Sin was disobedience to God. Jesus' sacrificial death redeems all those who believe, and saves them from death. | View of Good & Evil | Preoccupation with Armageddon—the final clash between the forces of good and evil. God will destroy the old system of creation and establish Jehovah's Kingdom. Deny the immortality of the soul, the existence of hell, and the seven sacraments. Although they have ritual of baptism, they regard it as merely the exterior symbol of their dedication to the service of Jehovah. | View of Salvation | Requirements for salvation-accurate knowledge, avoid debauchery, watchtower membership, and Proselytism. | View of After Life | Witnesses teach that the dead are completely unconscious, but that the great majority of the dead will be resurrected to live in an earthly paradise. A handful of others, 144,000 in total, are anointed to rule with God in heaven. Satan is the source of all evil, and is spiritually present among humans, seducing them with such evils as pornography and violence. We can protect ourselves through prayer, Bible study, and associating with good people. | Practices and Rituals | Jehovah's Witnesses have two principle ceremonies. Baptism is restricted to adults and is performed by total immersion. The Lord's Evening Meal, or Memorial, is an annual event commemorating Jesus Last Supper. | Celebrations & Festivals | Witnesses do not celebrate Christmas or Easter because they believe that these festivals are based on or massively contaminated by pagan customs and religions. They point out that Jesus did not ask his followers to mark his birthday. Witnesses do not celebrate birthdays or other secular festivals that originate in other religions. | Week 10 - Sources | http://www.patheos.com/Library/Jehovahs-Witnesses | Living Religions Ninth EditionMary Pat Fischer | www.jw.org/ | | | | | | | | . | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | | |

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