ANT2100EN - Anthropology of Religion

Course description

Introduction to religious beliefs and practices across cultures. It surveys major religions of the world and examines forms of religious beliefs; a variety of gods and supernatural forces; use of myths, rituals, religious ceremonies; shamans, priests, and religious specialists.

How this course benefits students

Religion is one of the social institutions, and studies show that about 85 % of the world population practice some sort of religious belief (Haviland et al. 2011). This course enhances missional leaders’ knowledge about diverse religious belief systems and thoughts. Learners will also gain techniques and tools that will help them take part in local and international ministry, Christian counseling, and other career opportunities.

Why this course is important

Knowledge of the basic nature of diverse belief systems helps missionaries and evangelists to scrutinize belief systems, differentiate them from Christianity, better prepare to deliver the Gospel messages, and provide evidence-based answers to the question people have about the Gospel. Information literacy in world religions also gives learners the opportunity to approach people of different religious backgrounds and contexts, and opens doors for missions.

Credit hours
3 hours
Subject area
Anthropology
Educational level
Associate
Distribution
Social Science Distribution
Learning type
Instructional
Prerequisites
None
Upcoming terms*
  • 2021-04 (March 7, 2022 - May 1, 2022)
* Schedule subject to change. Please contact the Registrar's office with schedule questions.
Professor
Dr. Samuel Jilo Dira, Professor of Cultural Anthropology

How this course relates to missional core values

Biblically based

This course studies Christianity as one of the world religions and Bible as a source of absolute truth.

Missionally driven

The main goal of this course is to teach local mission practitioners about various religious beliefs and prepare them for knowledge-based mission.

Contextually informed

The course examines world religious beliefs in diverse sociocultural contexts.

Interculturally focused

Religious beliefs and practices will be evaluated across cultures and in the contexts of people from diverse socioeconomic, racial, and ethnic backgrounds.

Practically minded

The course will provide learners with techniques that enable them to put their knowledge into practice in their respective communities. Ethnographic case studies and visual learning medias (videos) will be used to make learning more practice oriented.

Experientially transformed

The course encourages learners to put their knowledge into practice and gain experience. We will use success stories of experienced missional leaders as part of learning techniques to inspire students to use their knowledge.