Oral or written stories (narratives) about the actions and deeds of supernatural powers and cultural heroes.
Context of religion, the organized performance of behaviors intended to influence spiritual powers.
Intellectual (or cognitive) approach
Assume that humans seek explanations for the world around them.
The notion that the emotional or affective satisfactions people gain from religion are primary.
Is that religion instills and maintains common values, leads to increased conformity to cultural norms, promotes cohesion and cooperation, promises eternal rewards for good deeds and eternal damnation for evil acts, and so forth.
Is the performance of rites and spells intended to cause supernatural harm to others; that is, it is a form of evil magic.
The use of psychic powers to harm others by supernatural means.
Cults based on personal relationships between specific individuals and specific supernatural powers.
Cults in which certain individuals (shamans) have relationships with supernaturals powers that ordinary people lack.
Cults in which the members of a group cooperate to perform rituals intended to benefit all.
Highly organized cults in which a full-time priesthood performs rituals believed to benefit believers or the whole society, usually in large buildings dedicated to religious purposes or deities.
Is a person who is believed to have a special relationship to supernatural powers, which he frequently uses to cure sickness.
The attempt to enlist the aid of supernatural powers by intentionally seeking a dream or vision.
Ancestral Cults (or Ancestor Worship)
Beliefs and rituals surrounding the interactions between the living and their departed relatives.
The cultural belief that human groups have a special mystical relationship with natural objects, such as animals, plants, and sometimes, nonliving things.
A kind of religious specialist, often full-time, who officiates at rituals.
To preserve their way of life or to cope with changing conditions, large numbers of people join organized movements.
Melanesian revitalization movements in which prophets claim to know secret rituals that will bring wealth (cargo)
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