Just the facts on religion.

Glossary of Religion

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Tripitaka
(Sanskrit; Pali Tipitaka, "three baskets"). The collection of Buddha's teachings, in three sections: sutra, vinaya, and Abhidharma. They are the oldest collection of Buddhist teachings, written around the 3rd century BCE.
Confirmation
One of the seven Catholic sacraments, and a practice in some Protestant churches, in which a baptized young adult (usually aged 13) confirms his or her continuing commitment to the Christian faith. Confirmation is usually preceded by a period of education called catechism.
lotus
The flower that is rooted in the mud but blooms pristinely above the water represents non-attachment to the world in Hinduism and Buddhism.
Vesak
The birthday of the Buddha and the most important festival in Buddhism, celebrated in May.
zakat
Almsgiving. One of the Five Pillars of Islam.
euthanasia
Euthanasia, sometimes known as "mercy-killing," is the intentional ending of a patient's life by a physician, usually by lethal injection.
Great Schism
The division between Eastern and Western Christendom, which occurred in 1054 AD.
Ten Commandments
Ten religious and moral laws that God gave the Israelites through Moses, as recorded in the book of Exodus.
Wycliffe, John
(c.1328-84) English philosopher, theologian and reformer. He is known for his English translation of the Bible and has been called the "Morning Star of the Reformation."
Lambeth Conferences
Conferences of Anglican bishops from around the world, first instituted in 1867.
Eucharist
A sacrament recognized by all branches of Christianity. Commemorates the Last Supper of Christ with the sharing of bread and wine.
dhyana mudra
Buddhist hand gesture representing meditation.
baptism
The rite of admission to membership in Christian churches that involves immersing, sprinkling or anointing with water. Regarded as a sacrament by Catholic, Orthodox and Protestant Christians. Most denominations practice infant baptism; some only baptize adult believers.
mantra
Sacred sound believed to possess supernatural powers.
Allah
Strict monotheism. One God (Allah in Arabic); the same God revealed (imperfectly) in the Jewish and Christian Bibles
sadhu
A holy man who has renounced the material world to devote himself to spiritual practice. He wanders from place to place and owns nothing. A female sadhu is a sadhvi.
Great Dionysia
Festival of Dionysus in Athens.
Vishnu
("pervader"). Major deity and member of Hindu trinity with Brahma and Shiva. Seen as the preserver of the universe and embodiment of goodness and mercy. To Vaisnavites, Vishnu is the supreme deity (Isvara) who becomes incarnate in times of crisis and declining dharma. Vishnu is usually depicted standing, holding weapons, or reclining on a serpent.
Five Pillars of Islam
(Arabic Arkan al-Islam, "pillars of Islam" or Arkan ud-Din, "pillars of the faith"). The five primary duties of every Muslim: profession of faith (shahada), ritual prayer (salat), fasting during Ramadan (sawm), pilgrimmage to Mecca (hajj) and charity (zakat). Fulfillment of these duties brings rewards on earth and in the afterlife.
adoptionism
Doctrine that Jesus was fully human until God "adopted" him, or made him divine, at his baptism.

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