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Practice materials for
the Rel101 midterm.

COMMITMENTform of faith which religion really involves
EGYPTIANSemphasized afterlife
MYTHrelevant, symbolic story about the past system for years in the "common era" after the birth of Christ
MESOPOTAMIANSemphasized creation stories and astrological divination
AZTECSemphasized human sacrifice
GHOST DANCEdeveloped in 1880's on Indian reservations
PRIESTSmajor religious figures who dominated early civilizations
AFRICANSemphasized rites of passage, ghosts, divination
DIVINATIONattempts to predict the future
ABORIGINESAustralian natives, emphasized puberty rites, animism, totemism
TABOOPolynesian term for forbidden things
AKHENATONEgyptian pharoah, monotheist
HAMMURABIBabylonian king, written code of laws
POLYTHEISMworship of several deities
EMPIRICISMmethod of gaining knowledge, used by science
CARGO CULTS20th century religious movement in South Pacific
MYSTICSreligious figures who use meditation in seeking a close union with the deity
ZOROASTERapocalyptic, dualist prophet from Persia
TEUTONSapocalyptic Viking raiders
SHAMANmajor religious figure of tribal societies
AXIAL AGEperiod of early shamans and mystics, 800 - 200 BCE
ENLIGHTENMENTEuropean period of science, secularism, humanism; 17th and 18th centuries
CANONofficial list of sacred literature
MAGICprivate rituals which seek to manipulate spiritual forces
HUMANISMdoctrine that people are basically good
ULTIMATEreligion is within this realm of relevance
ONTOLOGICALargument that God's definition proves His existence
TELEOLOGICALargument that the design of the universe proves God's existence
PROPHETSreligious figures who claim that they convey messages from God
AGNOSTICISMview that we cannot prove God's existence, so we should remain in doubt
FUNDAMENTALISMadvocates that scripture should be interpreted literally, and applied to everyday life
ATHEISMdoctrine that no gods exist
ANIMISMdoctrine that all objects have a spirit
TOTEMSanimal symbols of clan ancestors
SECULARISMnon-denominational approach
SECTARIANISMpertains to specific denominations
THERIOMORPHICdeities with animal form
ANTHROPOMORPHICdeities with human form
RITUALceremonies which re-enact myths
EXORCISMcasting out evil spirits
THEOCRACYgovernment dominated by religion
HERMENEUTICSmethodological principles of scriptural interpretation
OTTO"religion is the emotional experience of the holy"
FREUD"religion is an obsessive neurosis which is designed to control sex and aggression"
MARX"religion is the opiate of the masses, a tool for oppression"
DURKHEIM"religion fosters group cohesiveness"
MEGALITHSstone ritual centers in northern Europe
TRICKSTERclever figure in Japanese, Celtic, Teutonic, Indian and African myths
SYNCRETISMblend of different religious traditions

Professor of Psychology
Crafton Hills College
Long Beach, CA

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