Jul 13, 2024  
BC3 Academic Catalog: 2023-2024 
BC3 Academic Catalog: 2023-2024 [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

PHIL 215 - Introduction to Religions of the World

3 Credits: (3 lecture)

Course Description
This course will introduce students to the major religions of the world. Students will study the historical origins of these religions as well as the development of their doctrines and practices and thus gain an informed perspective on how religion shapes the world today.  This course meets the General Education competency of Values, Ethics, and Diverse Perspective (VE).

Prerequisite ENGL 101.

Malloy, Michael. Experiencing the World’s Religions + Connect Access Card. 8th ed., McGraw-Hill College, 2021.  

The student will be able to: 

A. Recognize the history and characteristics of the academic field of religious studies. 

B. Discuss the difficulties in differentiating religion from other systems of beliefs and practices. 

C. Identify the historical and cultural origins and development of religions of the world. 

D. Explain the basic teachings and practices of religions of the world. 

E. Compare and contrast the academic and confessional approaches to religion. 

F. Examine ethical problems from a variety of religious perspectives. (VE) 

G. Examine the complexity of global human diversity and the various forces that shape it. (VE) 

A. The academic approach to the study of religion and its contrast with the confessional approach. 

B. History, geography, teachings and practices of indigenous religions. 

C. Transition from indigenous religions to world religions. 

D. History, geography, teachings and practices of religions originating in India. 

E. History, geography, teachings and practices of religions originating in China and Japan. 

F. History, geography, teachings and practices of religions originating in west Asia. 

G. New religious movements and religion in the modern world. 

Student Evaluation
Objective A: Objective test/quiz questions 

Objective B: Essay test questions and written assignments 

Objective C: Objective test/quiz questions 

Objective D: Papers and essay test questions 

Objective E: Papers 

Objective F: Essay test questions 

Objective G: Essay test questions 

Armstrong, Karen. The Great Transformation. Random, 2006. 

De Bary, William Theodore, ed. Sources of Indian Tradition. Columbia UP, 1988. 

Religions.” BBC. BBC. Web. 19 Jan. 2016. <http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions>. 

Eck, Diana L. Darsan. Columbia UP, 1998. 

Elk, Black, and John G. Neihardt. Black Elk Speaks: Being the Life Story of a Holy Man of the Oglala Sioux. U of Nebraska P, 1988. 

Eliade, Mircea. Patterns in Comparative Religion. Trans. Rosemary Sheed. U of Nebraska P, 1996. 

Esposito, John L. Islam. Oxford UP, 2011. 

Flood, Gavin D. An Introduction to Hinduism. Cambridge UP, 1996. 

Harvey, B. Peter. An Introduction to Buddhism. Coronet, 1990. 

Mah, Adeline Yen. Watching the Tree. Random, 2001. 

Neusner, Jacob. Introduction to Judaism. Westminster, 1992. 

Patheos: Hosting the Conversation on Faith. Patheos. Web. 19 Jan. 2016. <http://www.patheos.com/>. 

Poceski, Mario. Introducing Chinese Religions. Routledge, 2009.  

Prothero, Stephen. God Is Not One. HarperCollins, 2010. 

Smith, Huston. The World’s Religions. HarperCollins, 1991. 

Tamaru, Noriyoshi, and David Reid, eds. Religion in Japanese Culture. Kodansha, 1996. 

Weaver, Mary J., David Brakke, and Jason Bivius. Introduction to Christianity. Wadsworth, 1997.