c. A Zen Buddhist priest meditates at the “dry landscape” garden of Zuiho-in at Daitoku-ji Temple. Zen Buddhism developed as a movement within Mahayana Buddhism and encourages followers to cultivate the Buddha within oneself. Gardens like this aid meditation.
beings that represent the qualities of the Buddha and help others achieve enlightenment. Mahayana Buddhism is most closely associated with China, Korea, Japan, and Vietnam. Slightly more than half of all Buddhists are Mahayanists. The smallest branch of Buddhism, Tantrayana Buddhism, emerged in Tibet and spread to Mongolia. Syncretic in character, Tibetan Buddhism fused aspects of Mahayana Buddhism and native Tibetan beliefs. Indigenous inﬂuences in Mongolia have shaped the practice of Buddhism there. For many decades, however, Communist rule suppressed religious practices in both places. }ÕÀiÊx°È illustrates some other dimensions of Buddhism.
Sikhism Some 23 million adherents practice Sikhism, making it the smallest of the major universalizing religions. A guru is an inspired religious teacher, and the word Sikh means disciple. Guru Nanak (1469–1538) founded Sikhism. Sikhs believe that Guru Nanak experienced a divine revelation, after which he began teaching and establishing Sikh communities.
Sikhism emerged in northern India and bears the inﬂuences of Hinduism and Islam. For example, Sikhism teaches belief in and worship of one creator god and yet emphasizes the importance of karma. The holy book for Sikhism is the Guru Granth Sahib, also called the Guru Granth. It consists of a compilation of hymns revealed to Guru Nanak and several other gurus. Sikhs call this holy book a guru because they consider it to be the source of spiritual authority today.
1. What is a syncretic religion? Explain using a speciﬁc example. 2. How does the concept of scale relate to universalizing and ethnic religions? 3. How has the global geography of Christianity recently changed? Why? 4. Where are Buddhism and Hinduism prevalent, and how are the two faiths similar and different? Religion in Global Context
Published on Sep 3, 2013