Religions That You Never Knew Existed!
Religious diversity is what makes the world an interesting place to live in. You might have heard of Christianity, Buddhism, Islam, and so on… You might have come across them in your day-to-day life. However, here are some lesser-known religions that you never knew existed. So, read on…
Religions That You Never Knew Existed!
Cheondoism: Cheondism is a 20th century religious movement. It has its origins in a peasant rebellion in 1812. This theology is monotheistic, panentheistic, and pantheistic. The roots are from Korean Buddhism and shamanism with its elements from Christianity. This has become very popular in the Northern Korea, where this religion followed now. Some of the beliefs are that god exists in each individual. They strive to make the Earth a paradise and transform its believers into intelligent beings with social consciousness.
Mazdakism: Mazdak, who is a Socialist and a Persian reformer, found out this religion in the 6th century BC. His teachings does not emphasize on religious formalities. He used to criticise the Zoroastrian clergy as they oppressed the Persian population and caused much poverty. Despite their good teachings, the followers of Mazdak raided the rich and looted them, which they believed was their right. This was one drawback of this religion.
Builders of the Adytum: Also called BOTA is a religion found by Dr. Paul Foster Case from California. These religious teachings are mainly based from occult tarot, esoteric psychology, Qabalah, meditation techniques, Hermetuc, and astrology. They believe that Qabalah is the mystical root for both original Christianity and ancient Judaism. However, the good thing is that people of all faiths can accept it if they are inclined mystically.
Asatru: This is a revival of Nordic religion. It is based mainly on mythic tales and polytheistic faith. According to this religion, there are several minor gods and four key deities. The followers live in communities called Kindreds. The modern worshippers offer honey-wine and mead to the gods. They ascribe to the “Nine Noble Virtues” as a way to live their lives.
Eckankar: John Paul Twitchell from America established this religion in the year 1965. They worship the divine spirit “Eck”, which is a monotheistic faith. It teaches that spiritual growth is the only way, which is attained through meditative exercises like yoga. If a person successfully completes one’s spiritual journey then this results in the reunification with Eck.
Jainism: This religion was found 2,500 years ago in India. It has around 4 million believers all around the world. This polytheistic faith that god exists alongside the humans in a complicated hierarchy. It is quite similar to Buddhism and the goal is to free the4 soul from the rebirth cycle and achieve a spiritual perfection. Those who successfully pas this endeavor are called Jinas. The temples have pictures of the 24 tirthankaras, who are the revered spiritual leaders. Monasticism and meditation are the key features of this religion.
Aladura: This religion was found in the early 20th century. It is mainly based on the so-called prophet healing churches in Africa. It is related to the Anglican movement of Christianity. It focuses on a strict moral code and divine healing. It is a mixture of African rituals and Anglican traditions. The leaders are called prophets, who perform healing believers through prayer and rituals.
Cao Dai: It is a Vietnamese religion. Its roots are from Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, and Catholicism. It has 6 million followers and was found in the year 1926. The followers worship many saints that include Pericles and Julius Caesar. The mission of this religion is to create a more tolerant world. The practices are occult and are taken from Taoist traditions.
Turtles and Tortoises: The name may sound weird, but they believe that the earth rests on the back of a turtle or tortoise. The story of this religion is an interesting one. They believe that the turtle dived to the ocean bottom and brought a little soil in its nails. When the turtle came came to the surface, God scraped the nails and made a small ball. This ball of soil taken from the nails of the turtle grew and became a large universe. In China, turtle stands as the Universe, the belly stands for the Earth, and the dome shaped back stands for the Sky. Though the story may sound strange, but this is what the followers of turtles and tortoises believe.
Spiritism: This religion does not need formal membership, regular frequency, and it does not support formal adoration. They say that they do not oppose science, but they are actually trying to harmonize with it. Spiritism imbibes its value from Western and Christianity traditions. The followers, who are called spiritists pray to God and are mainly based on the philosophical doctrine that are written by Leon Denizard Rivail. A movie called “Ghost” with Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore was similar to the teachings of Spiritism.
I bet at least 8-9 religions are something that you might have not heard until now. So, religion does play an important part in anyone’s life, but one thing is that it should be evident in their behavior, not just in their words. So, any religion you follow, one thing to keep in mind is to truly and religiously practice piety, equity, righteousness and compassion. If people can just look beyond all the greed, hatred, animosity, intolerance and prejudice that corrupts most religions, then they may find that the true essence of piety, equity, righteousness, compassion and spirituality is enshrined within the lines of all truly spiritual belief systems.