Ch 4: Overview of World Religions

About This Chapter

If you're having a hard time understanding world religions, take a look at this easy-to-use and informative chapter. Our video and text lessons clearly outline the topics that you'll need to know in order to catch up in class, finish your homework or study for an upcoming exam.

Overview of World Religions - Chapter Summary

This engaging chapter outlines world religions for your study. In these lessons, you'll review Roman religions and myths, as well as the religions of Meso-America. Additional topics include the origins and teachings of Christianity and the U.S. history of religion. After completing this chapter, you should be able to:

  • Outline the early Indian religions of Hinduism and Buddhism
  • Detail the influence of Confucianism
  • Identify the history and origins of Taoism
  • Discuss the birth of Islam and Mohammed
  • Describe Emperor Asoka
  • Explore the height of Buddhism
  • Explain Islam's spread and the progress made by the Caliphates
  • Outline the history of the Jewish belief system

Our helpful learning materials are created by professional instructors and accessible on your mobile phone, tablet or computer 24 hours a day. Each lesson is followed by a short quiz that offers a great way to test your understanding ahead of an upcoming exam. Or, take the chapter test to make sure you've understood the subjects you've learned. If you need any help, reach out to one of our instructors with your questions.

11 Lessons in Chapter 4: Overview of World Religions
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Roman Myths and Religion

1. Roman Myths and Religion

This lesson compares Roman gods to their Greek predecessors and enumerates the similarities and differences between Greek and Roman religion. Finally, Roman religion's relationship with mystery cults, especially Christianity, is briefly explored.

The Religions of Meso-America

2. The Religions of Meso-America

This lesson will explore the bygone religions of Meso-America, specifically the Mayan and Aztec belief systems. In doing this, it will highlight their belief in animism, their sacred calendars, and the use of human sacrifice as a means of worship.

Early Religion in India: Hinduism & Buddhism

3. Early Religion in India: Hinduism & Buddhism

This lesson will explore the founding of Hinduism and Buddhism. It will cover the basic beliefs of Hinduism and the life of Siddhartha Gautama, and the presence of both religions in modern day India.

The Founding of Confucianism: Overview & Influence

4. The Founding of Confucianism: Overview & Influence

This lesson will explain the origins of Confucianism by highlighting the life and times of Master Kung, known today as Confucius. In doing so, it will focus on feudalism in China as well as the principle of jen.

The Origins of Taoism: History, the Uncarved Block & Tao-Te Ching

5. The Origins of Taoism: History, the Uncarved Block & Tao-Te Ching

This lesson will seek to explain the rather nebulous founding of Taoism. In doing so, it will explore the concepts of the Tao and the Pu, while also highlighting the role Lao-tzu played in the formation of this ancient Eastern philosophy.

Mohammed and the Birth of Islam

6. Mohammed and the Birth of Islam

Out of the deserts of Arabia would come a man who would change the world. He was Mohammed, founder of the religion of Islam, and this lesson serves as a brief summary of his life and the founding of the religion of Islam.

Emperor Asoka: The Height of Buddhism

7. Emperor Asoka: The Height of Buddhism

This lesson will highlight the life and accomplishments of Asoka the Great. In doing this, it will explore the historical significance of his Rock Edicts as well as the role he played in spreading Buddhism to East and Southeast Asia.

The Spread of Islam and the Progress of the Caliphates

8. The Spread of Islam and the Progress of the Caliphates

After the death of Mohammed, Islam continued to spread through Arabia, the Middle East and Africa. This lesson is an overview of Islam's progress from the faith of Mecca to a faith for all the world.

The Jewish Belief System: Description, Elements & History

9. The Jewish Belief System: Description, Elements & History

This lesson will explore the ancient religion of Judaism, the faith of the Jewish people. In doing so, it will highlight the concept of monotheism, Yahweh's covenant with Abraham and the Jewish texts of law.

Christianity: Origin & Teachings

10. Christianity: Origin & Teachings

Learn about the origins of Christianity and how the death of Jesus launched an entire religion. Discover the key teachings of Christianity. See how much you've picked up by taking a quiz.

The History of Religion in the U.S.

11. The History of Religion in the U.S.

In this lesson, we will examine the history of religion in the United States. We will highlight key developments in American religious history, and we will identify central themes and trends.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
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Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
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