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As you have read in the course text, the foundational beliefs of all religious traditions include cosmogonies (the answers to the questions of how we came to be, why we are here, and what happens to us after we die) as well as theodicies (the reasons for why humans experience suffering). What similarities do you see between this week’s highlighted religious traditions? How do the cosmogonies surrounding death and the afterlife differ? How a culture or religion prepares for and ritualizes death can give you a lot of insight into their beliefs about life and the afterlife. In this Discussion, you will consider the culture of the living practitioners of various civilizations based on their burial rituals and views on death. Explore the BBC Religions and Ethics resources from this week’s Resources. Consider the similarities and differences between two religious traditions, specifically looking at their views on death, burial rituals, and the afterlife.

Reflect on what you can infer about the cultures that practice those religions based on your answers to the previous questions.

paragraph comparing the two religions you selected, focusing on the tradition’s burial rituals, views on death, and views on the afterlife. In a second paragraph, explain how each religion’s views about burial, death, and the afterlife are reflected in their culture. Support your assertions by making at least 2 references, in proper APA format, 

Kurtz, L. R. (2016). Gods in the global village: The world’s religions in sociological perspective (4th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

Chapter 1, “Religious Life in the Global Village”- “Three Pillars of Analysis: Beliefs, Rituals, and Institutions” (pp. 23–30) / Chapter 2, “A Sociological Tour: Turning East” - “Hinduism, or Sanatana Dharma” (pp. 53–62) - “Buddhism” (pp. 69–74) - “Taoism” (pp. 80–83) / Chapter 3, “The Tour: Western Religions—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam” - “Judaism” (pp. 93–99) - “Christianity” (pp. 101–106) - “Islam” (pp. 110–116) / Chapter 4, “Indigenous Religions” - “The Veneration of Ancestors” (pp. 140–141)

BBC. (2014). Mormonism. Retrieved from http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/mormon/

BBC. (2014). Santeria. Retrieved from http://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religions/santeria/

Church of Scientology International. (2015). Scientology: Washington DC. Retrieved from http://www.scientology-washingtondc.org/

Light Planet. (2015). Mormon temples virtual tour. Retrieved from http://www.lightplanet.com/mormons/temples/tour.html

Mahrashi Foundation USA. (2015). Transcendental meditation. Retrieved from http://www.tm.org/meditation-washington-dc/

The Theosophical Society in America. (n.d.). Retrieved January 4, 2016, from https://www.theosophical.org/

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