Just the facts on religion.

Glossary of Religion

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

Ebionites
(Hebrew ebionim, "poor men"). An ascetic sect of Jewish Christians that taught Jesus was only a human prophet who had received the Holy Spirit at his baptism. Rejected Paul, and held that the law of Moses must be obeyed by Christians.
ecclesiology
(Greek ekklesia, "church"). Branch of theology dealing with the doctrine of the church.
ecumenical council
A council of the Christian church at which representatives from several regions are present. To be distinguished from a "synod," which is a meeting of the local church.
Edict of Nantes
Edict signed by Henry IV at Nantes on April 13, 1598, after the end of the French wars of religion. It granted extensive rights to the Huguenots (French Calvinists). The edict was revoked by Louis XIV in the Edict of Fontainebleau on October 18, 1685.
Eid
(or 'id; from Aramaic/Syriac, "festival"). In Islam, holiday or festival, of which there are two major ones: 'Id al-Adha and 'Id al-Fitr.
Eid Al-Adha
("Feast of the Sacrifice"). Holiday marking the end of the hajj.
Eid Al-Fitr
("Feast of the Breaking of the Fast"). Holiday celebrated at the end of the month of Ramadan.
eiresione
Olive branch carried by singing boys at various festivals, then deposited either at the temple of Apollo or house doors. The branches were hung with symbols of agricultural abundance: figs, fruits, etc. Householders were expected to give the boys a present in return.
ELCA
Evangelical Lutheran Church in America. The largest Lutheran church body in the U.S. and more liberal than the LCMS.
Eleusinia
Important festival of games held at Eleusis (in Attica) on a grand scale every fourth year and on a lesser scale every two years. The prize was grain from the Rarian field in Eleusis, where grain was believed to have been first cultivated.
Eleusis
Most famous local community (deme) in Athens after Piraeus. On a landlocked bay with a rich plain; merged with Athens before the 7th century BCE.
Elysian Fields
(also Elysium). Paradise inhabited by the distinguished or the good after their death. First named in Homer's Odyssey as the destiny of Menelaus.
endless knot
Buddhist symbol representing the Buddha's endless wisdom and compassion.
eschatology
Branch of theology dealing with end times or last things. Includes such subjects as the afterlife, the Day of Judgment, the Second Coming, and the end of the world.
Eucharist
A sacrament recognized by all branches of Christianity. Commemorates the Last Supper of Christ with the sharing of bread and wine.
euthanasia
Euthanasia, sometimes known as "mercy-killing," is the intentional ending of a patient's life by a physician, usually by lethal injection.
Evangelicalism
A tradition within Protestant Christianity emphasizing active evangelism, personal conversion and faith experiences, and Scripture as the sole basis for theology and practice.
ex cathedra
(Latin "from the throne.") Authoritative statements made by the Pope in Roman Catholicism, which are believed to be infallible.
excommunication
A penalty imposed by the Catholic Church prohibiting a person from receiving or administering sacraments or holding church office.
exegetes
An interpreter or teacher of sacred lore. Athenian exegetai concerned themselves primarily with the unwritten sacred law, but also pronounced on secular and domestic questions.

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