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The Nature of Religion

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There are so many different religions out there, it can boggle ones mind to try and get to know them all. The funny thing is, however, that many of the major religions of the world; Christianity, Judaism and Muslim are in fact of the same origin. Starting with Abraham, father of the Israelites and indirectly Judaism, he had many children and in effect started the monotheistic religions of the West and the Middle East.

Due to those religion's nature and popularity, it made it difficult from other religions to get firm footing throughout the Western World, any that tried were persecuted in ways that only Stephen King could illustrate. Only now, in the age of reason, are other religions being given the freedom to exist.

This being said, monotheistic religions of the West had little effect in (most of) the East for most of human history as it is there that the Dharmic religions have held. In the Indian language Dharma means 'one's religion or spirituality'. Throughout Indian philosophy, Dharma is presented as a central concept that is used in order to explain the "higher truth" or ultimate reality of the universe.

These religions, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, and Sikhism, among others, all focus on improving ones 'understanding of the universe', or in other words, seeking the ultimate truth of the world. These religions all stem from more or less the same place, the cradle of civilization or the many ambiguous other civilizations that popped up afterwards.

In the Far East, Japan and some of China, as well as the small countries such as Vietnam and Cambodia neighboring them, the religions that have taken hold are much more philosophical than theistic. These religions; Shinto, Taoism and Confusciousism to name a few, are mainly about the mortal world, revolving around spirituality and making life itself easier, although it is nowhere that simple. They do not focus on explaining existence, simply to aid in communication with the kami, or spirits of the natural world.

Lastly is Atheism and Agnosticism, which are the active rejection and the passive non-acceptance of a god or gods, respectively.

Consequently, British Columbia has the highest atheist population in North America. I myself am somewhere in between.

Either way, we can all be glad that most of the world has entered into the age of reason and religious freedom is only getting more pronounce.



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