Religions strongly influence the life of human beings and if we see in the past, the religion has helped the civilizations in shaping the overall life of the human being. It has not only affected the several aspects of the humanity but it has also affected the art, culture, politics, ideology, mutual relations of the different societies and the world’s atmosphere. Today, Religion is in news for some bad reasons and some fundamentalists have started using the name of religion for their vested interests. The concept of terrorism and several intolerances are the result of religious extremism and intolerance. This paper discusses religion, religious traditions, several components of the religion, and other related aspects.
Religion is a phenomenon that is found in different forms. It is not necessary for everyone to follow the same beliefs. What is relevant for one person or a group of persons can be irrelevant and even intolerable for others. There are many religions on the earth and every religion has several rituals which are followed by the followers of a religious group. Followers of a religion try to find of a path through their religion and in this course, they practice a set of rules prescribed by their religion.
Three basic components of any religion are the God, Self or the individual and the methods to follow the religion. These three components constitute the religion affects the religious traditions and when the three components are duly met or performed the goal is achieved. Every religion has its set of rules, stories, myths, teachings, and texts for its followers to inspire them and to fill positivity in their minds. In almost every religion, there are stories to embellish the important persons or gods of the religion. The basic purpose of these stories, texts, myths, and teachings seems to be the tools to keep their followers intact with the religion in addition to inspire them to do good things and avoid doing bad things in their life. In Christianity, there are Bible, old testaments and new testaments which fill the brain of a follower with positive thoughts and inspire people to always do positive things in their life. The religious texts and stories further prevent a person from adopting bad path by portraying several examples and mythical accounts. In Islam, apart from Hades and Quran, there are several stories which keep its followers energized and suggest them to follow the good path. Hinduism has rich accounts of stories, texts, myths and teachings. Mahabharata and Ramayana are most famous of these accounts.
Every religion has its unique method and process which is prescribed to its followers and it is expected and advised them to follow these procedures. Worshipping, pilgrimages, rituals and prayers could be the suggested ways for the followers of a religion. The procedures of different religions could be similar or different but usually there motive is the same and it is the peace and welfare for the followers of the religion. There is hardly any evidence where the religion suggests its followers to hate the other believers or the humanity. The people who are indulged in spreading the hate against others are interpreting the things their way and their ultimate motive is the destruction of the humanity.
Prayers and several rituals are the integrated part of the Christianity and are suggested unavoidable for its followers while Islam believes in the prayers and the pilgrimages. In Islam, hajj is considered one of the goals of the life. The Hinduism is on the other hand believes in a large set of rituals, pilgrimages, and the worshipping idols of their several gods. Though worshipping the idols has been evidenced in the several ancient civilizations but now it has been practiced by the followers of the Hinduism.
Religious traditions are very important in the life of a human being and these traditions help people in the development. These traditions affect several aspects of the people and the biggest thing they affect is the relationship. Different people or different groups find themselves attached to a new person or a group if they belong to the same religious traditions. Religious traditions also help people in making strong relations in the society and these traditions apart from deciding the mutual relationships further decide the leadership of the society or a community.
People from the Igbo community worship the goddess of the earth and various spirits like the river and the yam. Igbo people believe and worship Chukwu and Chineke as their gods. People of this Igbo community believe that every individual has a unique soul and they are powerful enough to control their own fate. The Igbo’s use masks while participating in the dances and ceremonies. The Igbo community considers the funeral as the most important ritual of their life and belief and the reason is that they believe that through the process of funeral, they help the deceased entering into the spiritual world.
After having observed, the above said analysis of the religion, religious traditions and several related aspects, it is clears that the religion and religious traditions are a very important part of the human life and they help the human beings in the process of the development.
Linda Woodhead, Hiroko Kawanami and Christopher Partridge. (2009). Religions in the Modern World: Traditions and Transformations. London: Routledge.
Molloy, M. (201O). Experiencing the World’s Religions: Tradition, Challenge, and Change. Hawaii: The McGraw-Hill .