New User Special Price Expires in

Let's log you in.

Sign in with Facebook


Don't have a StudySoup account? Create one here!


Create a StudySoup account

Be part of our community, it's free to join!

Sign up with Facebook


Create your account
By creating an account you agree to StudySoup's terms and conditions and privacy policy

Already have a StudySoup account? Login here

Religion 131 Exam 1 Study Guide

by: Brittany Wright

Religion 131 Exam 1 Study Guide REL 131

Marketplace > University of Southern Mississippi > REL 131 > Religion 131 Exam 1 Study Guide
Brittany Wright
GPA 4.0

Preview These Notes for FREE

Get a free preview of these Notes, just enter your email below.

Unlock Preview
Unlock Preview

Preview these materials now for free

Why put in your email? Get access to more of this material and other relevant free materials for your school

View Preview

About this Document

All the information on the concepts provided by the study guide Professor Slagle provided. This is an elaboration of what Professor Slagle's study guide.
Comparative Religion
Amy Slagle
Study Guide
50 ?




Popular in Comparative Religion

Popular in Department

This 4 page Study Guide was uploaded by Brittany Wright on Monday September 26, 2016. The Study Guide belongs to REL 131 at University of Southern Mississippi taught by Amy Slagle in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 41 views.

Similar to REL 131 at USM


Reviews for Religion 131 Exam 1 Study Guide


Report this Material


What is Karma?


Karma is the currency of StudySoup.

You can buy or earn more Karma at anytime and redeem it for class notes, study guides, flashcards, and more!

Date Created: 09/26/16
Exam 1 Study Guide This is based off of the study guide provided by Professor Slagle. I will provide definitions and examples to the  concepts that she mentions. Be sure to read the extra reading she provided as I will not be providing a synopsis  in this study guide. Good luck on the test! Study hard! General Religion Concepts  Religion­ comes from the Latin word “religare” which means to tie or bind together (you should include  information about all of the vocabulary from homo religiosus to agnosticism in this part considering  they are all apart of religion, you don’t have to go into detail just mention that they are a part of religion)  Homo religiosus­ a term used to say that humans have always made a distinction between 2 fundamental states: profane and sacred; humans are innately religious or seeking a higher power  Emic­ looking from the “inside”; the point of view of a practitioner or someone who is a part of the  specific religion or other cultural aspect; these people are usually concerned with the “truth”; I like to  remember this by thinking of the word immersed which sounds a little like emic and if you are part of  the religion you are immersed in it  Etic­ looking from the “outside”; the point of view of someone who is not deeply involved in the  religion or other cultural aspect; viewing cross­cultural application; these people are concerned with  understanding the “others” and learning; remember etic has a ‘t’ in it like the word outside  Profane­ the human sphere, secular life; the part of the fundamental world where someone is searching  for meaning; examples: just regular human people and the world we live in  Sacred­ beyond the human sphere. This is the higher power, creator, supernatural realm; this is the part  of the fundamental world that provides meaning to someone; examples: Gods, goddesses, creators,  higher powers, things like that  Hierophany­ the appearance between the sacred in the profane; when the sacred and profane meet;  examples: the story of Moses and the burning bush, The Vedas, and Krishna or any other avatars of the  Hindu gods  Myth­ technical term for stories about the sacred; not about being true or false; examples: the story of  Moses and the burning bush could be used here too or the story of the Bhagavad Gita  Ritual­ performative action designed to open communication with the sacred; rights of passages or the  transitions in a person’s life; examples: baptisms, christenings, pujas, prayer,   Symbol­ visual representation for religion; examples: the cross, the om, the star of David,  Doctrine­ official, institutionally approved interpretation(s) of hierophanies; boundaries setting groups  apart; this can control the interpretation of an Hierophany  Atheism­ denial of the existence of the sacred   Agnosticism­ knowledge that the existence of the sacred is impossible  Hinduism  Hindu­ Sanskrit for “Land Beyond the Indus River,” meaning it is not originally religious. Hinduism is a very elastic religion. Everything that isn’t Buddhism, Judaism, Christianity, Jainism or any other major  religion, falls under the Hinduism category.  This is why Hinduism is sometimes considered a made up  religion.  A great deal of the Hindu beliefs and practices come from the Vedas. Vedas means “sacred knowledge,” and is an ancient library full of magical texts and hymns. This library is believed to hold the cosmic  sounds of the universe; it is a Hierophany. The books held in the Vedas are called the Upanishads.  Upanishads means “near­sitting,” because the students who sat nearest to the Gurus, spiritual teachers,  learned the most. They are the last books of the Vedic library and chart out the nature of reality and what to do about it. They are thought to originally be the teachings of Gurus.  o Reincarnation is the rebirth of a soul into something new in the next life. Hindus use the word  samsara when talking about reincarnation. Samsara means “to wander”. It is the cycle of birth,  death, and rebirth. Everything is a part of samsara, even the universe. This is seen as an  ultimately negative process. Hindus see it as being trapped in an infinite cycle. The soul is called  the Atman. It is in every living being therefore anyone can be reincarnated as anything with a  soul. The soul is what is transferred through reincarnations. Samsara is ultimately an illusion  which is known as Maya. The only thing that is truly real is the Brahman. The Brahman is the  ultimate reality of the universe. The atman is the Brahman; samsara is the Brahman. Therefore,  you, me, and everyone and everything that is living is the Brahman. All beings are the Brahman  in disguise. This is called lila, which is cosmic play. The Brahman has essentially spun out and  taken on many guises in order to play hide and seek with itself. The only way to escape samsara  is moksha. Moksha is when one realizes that not only are they themselves the Brahman but so is  everyone and every other living thing in the world. It is the liberation or release of the cycle of  birth, death, and rebirth.   Yoga is the practice of trying to achieve a union between the atman and the Brahman. Although there  are many types of yogas this is what they all have in common.  A yogi (male) or yogini (female) is someone who practices yoga  Bhakti yoga is “devotion” yoga. Through loving and worshiping the gods one can realize their true  nature. o In this yoga people japam, which is chanting the name of the god or goddess one is worshiping.  People also preform pujas, which are offerings made to gods or goddesses.  For pujas and other purposes for dividing up the Hindu religion, there are 3 main  divisions of Hinduism:  Vishnu­ preserver god  Shiva­ creator and destroyer of all  Shakti­ feminine cosmic energy o Kali­ goddess of feminine fury; embodiment of estrogen; she is  bloodthirsty and is often depicted wearing a garland of heads or penises  around her neck o Sarasvati­ goddess of music and learning o Lakshmi­ goddess of good fortune, mother goddess; wife of Vishnu  Karma Yoga is “action” yoga. This yoga is performed through acts of compassion, mercy and kindness  towards others one can unite with the Brahman. o Ahimsa, nonviolence, is an important ideal in this yoga. o This is the do gooders yoga. It’s all about helping others through selfless actions.  Jnana yoga is “knowledge” yoga. One obtains a union with the Brahman through acquisition of hidden  spiritual knowledge. The goal of this yoga is for one attain purity of mind. o This purity of mind is found through meditation and contemplation as well as studying the sacred texts of the Upanishads and Bhagavad Gita.   Raja yoga is “royal” yoga. This yoga is all about using different techniques to obtain the union between  the atman and Brahman. o Prana is the breath of “life force”. This is the breath you use during Pranayama which is the  practice of breathing control undertaken to still the mind. o Special body positions are also used in this kind of yoga. Like the yoga poses we Americans  think of when we think yoga. o Meditation is another technique used. This is used to still the mind or reach a higher level of  thinking or consciousness. The goal of meditation in this yoga is Samadhi, which is complete  inner peace resulting from meditation.  o Mantras are words or phrases chanted out of devotion or to change one’s state of mind  Krishna is an example of an avatar of Vishnu. An avatar is a manifestations of a deity in physical form.  Rhada is another example of an avatar, as she is the avatar of Lakshmi. Avatars are an examples of  hierophanies.   The caste system has a lot to do with one’s karma and what one is reincarnated as. What caste one is  born is depends on what they did in their past life. Whatever cast one is born in is the caste they will be  in for the rest of their current life. 


Buy Material

Are you sure you want to buy this material for

50 Karma

Buy Material

BOOM! Enjoy Your Free Notes!

We've added these Notes to your profile, click here to view them now.


You're already Subscribed!

Looks like you've already subscribed to StudySoup, you won't need to purchase another subscription to get this material. To access this material simply click 'View Full Document'

Why people love StudySoup

Bentley McCaw University of Florida

"I was shooting for a perfect 4.0 GPA this semester. Having StudySoup as a study aid was critical to helping me achieve my goal...and I nailed it!"

Amaris Trozzo George Washington University

"I made $350 in just two days after posting my first study guide."

Steve Martinelli UC Los Angeles

"There's no way I would have passed my Organic Chemistry class this semester without the notes and study guides I got from StudySoup."


"Their 'Elite Notetakers' are making over $1,200/month in sales by creating high quality content that helps their classmates in a time of need."

Become an Elite Notetaker and start selling your notes online!

Refund Policy


All subscriptions to StudySoup are paid in full at the time of subscribing. To change your credit card information or to cancel your subscription, go to "Edit Settings". All credit card information will be available there. If you should decide to cancel your subscription, it will continue to be valid until the next payment period, as all payments for the current period were made in advance. For special circumstances, please email


StudySoup has more than 1 million course-specific study resources to help students study smarter. If you’re having trouble finding what you’re looking for, our customer support team can help you find what you need! Feel free to contact them here:

Recurring Subscriptions: If you have canceled your recurring subscription on the day of renewal and have not downloaded any documents, you may request a refund by submitting an email to

Satisfaction Guarantee: If you’re not satisfied with your subscription, you can contact us for further help. Contact must be made within 3 business days of your subscription purchase and your refund request will be subject for review.

Please Note: Refunds can never be provided more than 30 days after the initial purchase date regardless of your activity on the site.