RELIGIOUS PHILOSOPHY FINAL ESSAY
Rev. Nancy Rutledge
This was a great and very interesting course. It was unbiased and well thought out. I would like to thank Robert Chamberlain for all his hard work.
This was definitely one of the favorite courses that I've taken. I learned a lot and had fun doing it. It will definitely help me as a minister to understand other faiths. I feel that anyone who wants to become a minister, or someone who just wants to learn more about faith, should take this course.
This course defines what people believe, why they believe, and how those beliefs differ. It covers that religion requires a God on which to focus, to worship, to give devotion and service to, and one to whom we must remain faithful. Conversely, an Ethical System has no such requirement. That is a system relating to moral action, motive or character. The Ethical System is organized based on principals of behavior, right and wrong. Some people have a hard time distinguishing between these terms. For example, many consider the Ten Commandments are based on morality. There are those religions that believe you must involve God, but there are other religions that see just the morality issue without a god, such as Buddhism and Jainism. Then there is a small group of religions that fall into the religio-ethical trap. This course, for all intents and purposes, considers no difference between these terms. Any system of devotion could be by a single person or by a group. It is said, and I agree, that no two people on earth believe exactly the same way. That still leaves us with over 5,000 different organized religious bodies. Many religions believe that if you don't belong to their religion, then you must belong to a cult.
The Religious Philosophy course covers four distinct forms generally recognized by human religiosity. These are: Individual faith, Communal faith, Shamanistic faith and Ecclesiastical faith. These four "systems of worship" were designated by anthropologists. This course also covers the field of religion by four other methods. These methods are specifically tailored for the field of religion. They are: evolutionary, multiplicity, theistically and problematically.
This course did a remarkable job of covering forty eight religions. Studying religion is important to be able to assess, evaluate and understand the bias that might be present. It covers the purpose and function of religion. This course covered religion is so many different ways.
It was exciting to see so much information presented in so many ways. It was a well written class that I'll definitely reread many times. I do love the courses from the ULC Seminary and I do reread them all. They are very good references that I keep near my desk to give me easy access. I feel this course is a must for everyone.
Peace to All,
Rev. Nancy Rutledge
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