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How does one attain a religious role? This module explains.

In many cases, one takes on a religious role because of many years of study and because the religious community regards you as wise and holy. But there are also roles that are acquired by other means.

The first of these is by birth : some roles belong to certain families. In Hinduism, for example, you must belong to one of the families in the Brahmin caste if you want to become a priest. It is not an automatic process – you will still have to spend many long years in study and preparation. But being born to the right parents is the first step.

There are also important roles reserved within the family unit that are based on birth, at least in the sense of how one is related to everyone else. One can expect that a father and mother will naturally have a certain teaching role when it comes to religious matters, for example. In traditional Chinese society, the relationship between older and younger brother is of great religious importance.

In African society, one's relationship with your mother's brother can be as close as the one with your father himself. This uncle would play a significant role in initiations, marriages and so on.

It can be hard at times for outsiders to see the religious significance of such family relationships. But in a society where one relates to God or the world primarily through the family line, whether its members are still alive or whether they are ancestors, knowing one's precise place in that line is of the greatest importance. This is equally true in Africa and in China. It gives a new, and different meaning to the term "elder". In this case, an elder really is older than you!

In Tibetan Buddhism, a second important way to assume a religious role is by reincarnation . They believe that when their important religious leaders die, they will come back in another body to lead their followers again. So, a few years after the leader's death, they send out a search party for the young boy who is the new appearance of the leader. He will then be trained to take up his position once again.

Finally, a role may be assumed simply because of a call from the other world. Muhammad, for example, did not choose to be a prophet – he was chosen by God. In African Religion, one may receive a call from the ancestors to start the long training process to become a healer. This is not a matter for debate: the ancestors will keep on sending you dreams and visions until you submit to their will and start your training. And the ancestors can send their demands to anyone, at any time.

So there are a number of ways in which one can enter into a religious role, apart from merit and individual interest. But in all of them, study and preparation still plays a major role.

Questions & Answers

What fields keep nano created devices from performing or assimulating ? Magnetic fields ? Are do they assimilate ?
Stoney Reply
why we need to study biomolecules, molecular biology in nanotechnology?
Adin Reply
yes I'm doing my masters in nanotechnology, we are being studying all these domains as well..
what school?
biomolecules are e building blocks of every organics and inorganic materials.
anyone know any internet site where one can find nanotechnology papers?
Damian Reply
sciencedirect big data base
Introduction about quantum dots in nanotechnology
Praveena Reply
what does nano mean?
Anassong Reply
nano basically means 10^(-9). nanometer is a unit to measure length.
do you think it's worthwhile in the long term to study the effects and possibilities of nanotechnology on viral treatment?
Damian Reply
absolutely yes
how to know photocatalytic properties of tio2 nanoparticles...what to do now
Akash Reply
it is a goid question and i want to know the answer as well
characteristics of micro business
for teaching engĺish at school how nano technology help us
Do somebody tell me a best nano engineering book for beginners?
s. Reply
there is no specific books for beginners but there is book called principle of nanotechnology
what is fullerene does it is used to make bukky balls
Devang Reply
are you nano engineer ?
fullerene is a bucky ball aka Carbon 60 molecule. It was name by the architect Fuller. He design the geodesic dome. it resembles a soccer ball.
what is the actual application of fullerenes nowadays?
That is a great question Damian. best way to answer that question is to Google it. there are hundreds of applications for buck minister fullerenes, from medical to aerospace. you can also find plenty of research papers that will give you great detail on the potential applications of fullerenes.
what is the Synthesis, properties,and applications of carbon nano chemistry
Abhijith Reply
Mostly, they use nano carbon for electronics and for materials to be strengthened.
is Bucky paper clear?
carbon nanotubes has various application in fuel cells membrane, current research on cancer drug,and in electronics MEMS and NEMS etc
so some one know about replacing silicon atom with phosphorous in semiconductors device?
s. Reply
Yeah, it is a pain to say the least. You basically have to heat the substarte up to around 1000 degrees celcius then pass phosphene gas over top of it, which is explosive and toxic by the way, under very low pressure.
Do you know which machine is used to that process?
how to fabricate graphene ink ?
for screen printed electrodes ?
What is lattice structure?
s. Reply
of graphene you mean?
or in general
in general
Graphene has a hexagonal structure
On having this app for quite a bit time, Haven't realised there's a chat room in it.
what is biological synthesis of nanoparticles
Sanket Reply
what's the easiest and fastest way to the synthesize AgNP?
Damian Reply
how did you get the value of 2000N.What calculations are needed to arrive at it
Smarajit Reply
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Source:  OpenStax, Learning about religion. OpenStax CNX. Apr 18, 2015 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11780/1.1
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