Intro to REL 1103- Exam 1
Intro to REL 1103- Exam 1 REL 1103
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This 7 page Study Guide was uploaded by Tina Ta on Saturday February 13, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to REL 1103 at Mississippi State University taught by William Kallfelz in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 41 views. For similar materials see Intro to Religion in Religious Studies at Mississippi State University.
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Date Created: 02/13/16
1. Hierophany - Give two examples of a hierophany (from the total of four) from two different religious traditions. The term "hierophany" means "sacred" or "holy," and they are modes of manifestation of sacred reality. Aside from ambivalent responses, the Sacred's modes of manifesting are diverse and manifold, and include: The Sacred's modes of manifesting are diverse and manifold, and include: I. Sacred Persons (e.g., prophets, messiahs avatars, etc.) -prophetic (Judaism, Islam) II. Sacred Objects (e.g., transubstantiaiton, etc.) III. Sacred Time (cosmology) IV. Sacred Space (relics, shrines, natural features, etc.) moshka (Buddhism, Hinduism) 2. Allegory and the myth - Allegory: a narrative that is usually fictional whose characters and incidents represent elements not part of the actual story that have moral and ethical meaning. - Myth is a narrative that presents a fundamental cultural world-view, such as dealing w ultimate cosmic + moral questions. 3. Textual criticism and document criticism—mention briefly their separate functions in Biblical exegesis: Exegesis is textual and document criticism to clarify the range of meanings of a text. 2 major forms of literary criticism used in biblical exegesis by Christian tradition: - Textual criticism: utilizes a number of methods to determine originality and/or authenticity of text and/or its versions. Document criticism: attempts to determine important facts about authorship and context of text. 4. Briefly define and mention the difference between prophetic and sacramental religious traditions. Prophetic: (e.g. Judaism, Islam, in particular), which “focuses on a person who receives a revelation that deals in various ways with historical events in the life of the community.” Sacramental: (e.g. Christianty, Shinto): Emphasizing the role of priests and “the presence of the sacred thtough aspects of material reality.” 5. Axial Age-Define and give an example of an Axial Age religion The complete displacement of polytheism by monotheism in the West, or a notion of monistic usually by sacred persons/prophets who reform traditions, as well presenting new avenues for conscious and spiritual evolution. E.g: The founders placed emphasis on soteriology--individual salvation/deliverance--and eschatology the notion that there is a goal or final point that social and cosmic history is heading towards, in which “all will be made right.” 6. Briefly define and mention the difference between prophetic and mystical religious traditions. Prophetic: (e.g. Judaism, Islam, in particular), which “focuses on a person who receives a revelation that deals in various ways with historical events in the life of the community.” Mystical: (e.g. Buddhism, Hinduism): Emphasizing certain states of being and consciousness “in quest for enlightenment or union with the sacred.” 7. Miracle It is a suspension or an exception to the laws of nature, whether by Divine intervention or (more generally) the manifestations of Sacred Reality. It simples to categorize miracles as supernatural phenomena. 8. Sacred Reality: Mention (and define) two from its four essential (substantial) characteristics. Sacred Reality is the foundation upon which any theology and/or religious morality system is built. “Religion signifies those ways of viewing the world that refer to: (1) A notion of sacred reality (2) which is made manifest in human experience (3) in such a way as to produce long-lasting ways of thinking, feeling, and acting (4) with respect to problems of ordering and understanding existence.” The substantial category is Sacred Reality II. Beyond the volitional control of human beings, to some extent E.g., the story of Uzzah IV. Properly determinative of aspects of human existence E.g: The Noble Eightfold Path (Buddhism) E.g: The Incarnation (Christianity) 9. Theodicy: Besides giving a brief definition, state what central problem it is a response to: Theodicy: Interpretation of divine justice (conceptual and existential analysis of theological problems like the problem of evil). The problem of evil represents “a cluster of issues arising from the attempt to relate a diverse set of experiences to notions of sacred reality… Religious people identify evil as an inconsistency between what is (the facts of experience) and what ought to be (according to a particular conception of sacred reality).” 10. Horizontal versus Vertical Cosmology: an account or theory of the origin of the universe. Vertical form, it is argued that every created/ moved/ caused thing is being caused right now. The vertical form is a bit more difficult to understand, but it is more powerful because not only does it show that God had to cause the "chain of causes" in the beginning, He must still be causing things now. Horizontal version claims that the cosmos had to have a cause some time ago. All things that have beginnings had to have causes. The universe had a beginning. Therefore, the universe had a cause. E.g: as Tir Nan existed in the actual world, in a faraway land ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- ---------- 1. In short, the phenomenological approach is holistic, not reductionist: while it admits that they may essentially involve ethics, economics, psychology, sociology … and no ‘purely’ religious phenomena. The method is an effort to understand religion from the point of view of religious persons. 4 principal steps: 1. Gather data: I.e., begin (in a descriptive manner) with facts concerning the observation of religious practices, and the behavior of religious people 2. Look for Patterns: After collecting sufficient data, find common patterns among them. 3. Analyze Structure of patterns: Try to find common meanings and explain the patterns discovered and described in 2. 4. Suggest Generalizations: Are there general features among the shared meanings in the patterns’ structure as depicted in 3. 4 component definition of religion by Clifford Geertz: (1) “A system of symbols which (2) acts to establish powerful, pervasive, long-lasting moods and motivations by [people] (3) by formulating conceptions of a general order of existence (4) and clothing these conceptions with such an aura of factuality that the moods and motivations seem uniquely realistic.” “Ancient astronaut” adherents often claim that humans are either descendants or creations of beings who landed on Earth millennia ago. An associated theory is that much of human knowledge, religion and culture came from extraterrestrial visitors in ancient times. And, visitors' advanced technologies were wrongly understood by primitive humans as evidence of divine status. Ancient astronauts acted as a "mother culture". -> This example of the ancient astronaut theory is not phenomenological. This is about reductionist because it sees religion as originating from only 1 place. For example, religious is toxic b/c of all the terrible things that people do in the name of religion. This is reductionist. 2. 4 Levels: Literal- reading something literally Allegorical- reading something as a story Moral- reading something as a lesson • Analogical- compare 2 separate things on the basis of their structure for clarity As the Christian writings became central and canonical, “the leaders of the churches and the theologians began to propose ways in which these works should be read and interpreted.” (JCL, 2009, 117) The Christian tradition adopts methods in exegesis and hermeneutics which include: Textual criticism: Utilizes a number of methods to determine originality and/or authenticity of text and/or its version(s) Document Criticism: Attempts to determine important facts about authorship and context of text. In the Christian tradition the Bible is seldom treated with the same reverence Early Protestant Martin Luther annd John Calvin : However, reformers in the Lutheran tradition (e.g. Martin Luther annd John Calvin) emphasized the authority of Scripture alone (sola scriptura) For the Protestant Reformers, the Bible is, then, the Word of God only by the inner testimony of the Holy Spirit.” The inspiration of the Holy Spirit is therefore a necessary condition, otherwise rendering the text incomprehensible. Difference btw traditional (4 lvs) and early Protestant: Christianity’s founder is The Lord Jesus Christ, and Martin Luther was the first founder of Protestant. Literal Meaning of Christianity is Follower Of Christ. And, Protestant is - to 'protest'. The Bible in Chritian tradition is seldom treated the same way, and the Bible of early protestant is only by the inner testimony of the Holy Spirit. Her insights strike me through her expert and 4 levels in the traditional reading has the similarity between them. I think she use both textual and document criticism to clarify the revelation and show the important fact from that. 3. 4 modes of manifestation of sacred reality include: Sacred persons: (e.g., prophets, messiahs avatars, etc.) prophetic (Judaism, Islam) Sacred objects: (e.g., transubstantiation, etc.) sacramental/material reality (Bible Christianity, Shinto) qur'an in Islam. Transubstantiation: catholic in Christianity—the Catholic doctrine of transubstantiation in particular Sacred space: (cosmology) mystical/state of being (Buddhism, Hinduism) axis mundi mercea eliade Sacred time: (relics, shrines, natural features, etc.) moshka (Buddhism, Hinduism) Sacred Persons, Objects, Space, and Time however differ in particular features depending on the dominant hierophany of the tradition, which include: Prophetic: (e.g. Judaism, Islam, in particular), which “focuses on a person who receives a revelation that deals in various ways with historical events in the life of the community.” Sacramental: (e.g. Christianty, Shinto): Emphasizing the role of priests and “the presence of the sacred thtough aspects of material reality.” Mystical: (e.g. Buddhism, Hinduism): Emphasizing certain states of being and consciousness “in quest for enlightenment or union with the sacred.” Prophetic falls under the category of sacred persons. Sacramental falls under sacred objects, Mystical falls under sacred space. Mystical traditions conceive time in a circular fashion. Religions such as Buddhism and Hinduism view time this way and emphasize the importance of moksha- to free oneself as time " is an illusion...the point is to see through historical time.” Sacramental and prophetic see time as linear fashion where time represents a field in which the sacred can manifest. 5. The problem of evil “is an emotional cataclysm…When something terrible happens, we naturally ask why. “Evil” (broadly construed) means “innocent suffering.” --- Evil divided into: Evil as a result of impersonal forces of nature (natural evil) Evil as result of human actions (whether deliberate or otherwise) (human evil). The problem of evil represents “a cluster of issues arising from the attempt to relate a diverse set of experiences to notions of sacred reality… Religious people identify evil as an inconsistency between what is (the facts of experience) and what ought to be (according to a particular conception of sacred reality).” - Theodicies: 1. Karma: moral weight of one's actions. (C & K) 2. Consolation/promise: at some future time, evil will be overcome. (C & K) 3. Sovereignty: there is no solution to the problem of evil. (both) 4. Dualism: good and bad are locked in a cosmic struggle, which explains all earthly events. The theodicy that stands out most to me is the consolation theodicy. I believe that God allows evil to happen for a greater good. Facing difficult situations allows a person to learn and appreciate the good things in their life more. 6. A miracle is an event not explicable by natural or scientific laws. E.g: event may be attributed to a supernatural being (God or gods), a miracle worker, a saint or a religious leader. David Hume argued against miracles on 2 counts: The famous 18th Century Enlightenment Scottish philosopher David Hume argued against miracles on two counts: (Metaphysical/Logical): By definition, miracles are violations of natural law —therefore logically self-contradictory. (Epistemic): Testimonies of miracles are typically the products of gullible, wishful thinkers and frauds, or it’s far more likely that they’re bogus. Stairs and Bernard use to answer Hume's second argument against miracles : Response 1: “[I]s the relevance of testimony as low as Hume suggests? In other words, are witnesses as unreliable as Hume seems to believe?” Suppose, for instance, we found an investigator who was cautious, critical, and educated—e.g. the Amazing Randi—former magician and debunker of the paranormal. “If someone like this [Amazing Randi] reported a miracle, Hume’s cautions wouldn’t apply so straightforwardly.” Stairs & Bernard briefly respond to David Hume's first argument: The "multiplying effect" (raising the posterior probability) of corroborated testimonies Suppose we add 2 or 3 or 4 or... 8 extra Miracle Checkers (all with the same credentials). The even if p(M) = 10^-16, if all eight report p(M|E) then the actual posterior probability that this is a miracle (i.e. p(E & M) is close to 90%! "The basic point is that it's highly unlikely that a large number of skilled people would independently make the same mistake." 2 main notions of the afterlife of Stairs & Bernard: Bernard Williams: Infinitely repeatable pleasures and immortality itself would be the ultimate hell—resulting from boredom. Death and finiteness are the sources of meaning and value. Response 1: However, some pleasures are inexhaustible (wouldn’t praising God and perpetual prayer and contemplation in beatitude be one of them)? Response 2: “Trying to think of the afterlife as a mere extension of ordinary mortal life is religiously suspect.” “ ‘Sometimes [eternity] breaks powerfully into our consciousness and gives us certainty…of a dimension of time which cuts into our time.’” nd I think the 2 hypothesis is more plausible or at least more consistent with what we know from science today. Death is directly affected to their daily life, because they think if they are doing good thing right now, they could have a beautiful life as mere extension of ordinary moral life when living with happy life in heaven when they die.
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