How religion can hamper economic progress

Religion hampered the diffusion of knowledge and economic development in France during the Second Industrial Revolution (1870-1914), according to research by Mara Squicciarini of Bocconi University recently published in the ...

How religion influences our relationship with the environment

As a marker of identity that transcends national borders, religion influences many environmentally relevant behaviors. Thus, understanding its role is key to tackling environmental challenges that are fundamentally transnational.

How strong a role does religion play in US elections?

On March 17, Joe Biden took firm control of the Democratic nomination process, winning primaries Florida, Illinois and Arizona by significant margins. The ongoing coronavirus epidemic is in part responsible, having reshaped ...

How religion can heighten or help with financial stress

Churchgoers who are strapped for cash may experience a spike in anxiety when the donation plate is passed. However, knowing they have a church family to support them in times of need may help ease their money worries.

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Religion

A religion is an organized approach to human spirituality which usually encompasses a set of narratives, symbols, beliefs and practices, often with a supernatural or transcendent quality, that give meaning to the practitioner's experiences of life through reference to a higher power, God or gods, or ultimate truth. It may be expressed through prayer, ritual, meditation, music and art, among other things. It may focus on specific supernatural, metaphysical, and moral claims about reality (the cosmos and human nature) which may yield a set of religious laws, ethics, and a particular lifestyle. Religion also encompasses ancestral or cultural traditions, writings, history, and mythology, as well as personal faith and religious experience.

The term "religion" refers to both the personal practices related to communal faith and to group rituals and communication stemming from shared conviction. "Religion" is sometimes used interchangeably with "faith" or "belief system," but it is more socially defined than personal convictions, and it entails specific behaviors, respectively.

The development of religion has taken many forms in various cultures. It considers psychological and social roots, along with origins and historical development.

In the frame of western religious thought, religions present a common quality, the "hallmark of patriarchal religious thought": the division of the world in two comprehensive domains, one sacred, the other profane. Religion is often described as a communal system for the coherence of belief focusing on a system of thought, unseen being, person, or object, that is considered to be supernatural, sacred, divine, or of the highest truth. Moral codes, practices, values, institutions, tradition, rituals, and scriptures are often traditionally associated with the core belief, and these may have some overlap with concepts in secular philosophy. Religion is also often described as a "way of life" or a life stance.

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