Unit 2 religions 600 bce 600 ce
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Unit 2 Religions 600 BCE-600 CE. Paul Kim, Parker Revers, Andrew Cole. Judaism. Most Influential of the smaller Middle Eastern groups: The JEWS First clearly developed monotheistic religion influenced by the Babylonian civilization Firm belief in the one God Hebrew Bible

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Unit 2 religions 600 bce 600 ce

Unit 2 Religions 600 BCE-600 CE

Paul Kim, Parker Revers, Andrew Cole


  • Most Influential of the smaller Middle Eastern groups: The JEWS

  • First clearly developed monotheistic religion

  • influenced by the Babylonian civilization

  • Firm belief in the one God

  • Hebrew Bible

  • Did not want to convert non-Jews

  • This religion was extremely influential as it did create the religions of Islam and Christianity

  • However not many people believed in Judaism due to the fact that Non-Jews were not converted, so about 1% of the population believed in Judaism

  • The technical founder: Abraham

  • Gender Roles: the roles of men and women are different but equal


  • Origin: Aryan invaders into India around 1700 BCE

  • No founder

  • Tolerant of other religions

  • EXTREMELY adaptable to growing and changing population

  • Little formal beliefs

  • Offers meditation and ritual

  • Possibly oldest religion

  • CASTE SYSTEM - still partially seen today

  • “Brahma” (Creator God)

  • “Harma” (Release of the soul achieved by following the rules)

  • “Dharma” (Follow the rules. Ex: Social Dharma)


  • Origin: Developed as a protest to Hindu priest practices; Gautama Buddha

  • 550 BCE

  • Monastic tradition (monks)

  • Went beyond India (China, Southeast Asia)

  • Wiped out in India due to effort of Hindus and Muslims by 1000 CE

  • Splits into Mahayana and Theraveda

  • Mahayana (Northern Buddhism. It is mainly followed by monks and nuns, and is largely found throughout China, Japan, Korea, Mongolia, Nepal, Russia, Tibet, and Vietnam)

  • Theraveda (Theravāda is the oldest surviving branch of Buddhism. It is relatively conservative.)

  • Zen Buddhism (700s in China, 1200s in Japan; sudden enlightenment through meditation)


  • System of political thought

  • believed in an authoritarian state ruled by force

  • Intellectual and literacy is discouraged

  • Law is supreme and replaces morality

  • A ruler must rule with an Iron Hand

  • Human Nature: Evil, unrestrained, and undisciplined

  • No true creator, but Han Fei was a key contributor to the legal system

  • It was influential only to the ruling elite and philosophers of Legalism who believed in rule by force

  • Not many people believed in Legalism as they did in Confucianism or Daoism so it would be around less than 1 percent


  • Origin: 550 BCE; Founded by Kong Qiu ( Confucius)

  • Philosophy to address problems of political and social disorder in China

  • Sought to promote social harmony by clarifying social relationships and proper rituals for all Chinese - (included rulers).

  • Spread by Key Disciples

  • Stressed “Patriarchy” (Men rule)

  • “Filial Piety” (Care for your elders)

  • Also stressed “Jen” (A quality of sympathy that relates all humanity to each other)

  • Only educated should govern


  • Founder of Daoism: Lao-Tzu

  • Influential to upper classes which had an interest in a more elaborate spirituality

  • embraced traditional Chinese beliefs in nature’s harmony and nature’s mystery

  • spiritual alternative to Confucianism - thus the people who believed in this religion were similar to those who believed in Confucianism

  • Lao’s teaching also stressed that true human understanding came from nature


  • Founded by Jesus Christ, claimed to be son of God

  • Holy book: The Bible, two sections, the Old and New Testament

  • No exact number of followers, however they represented about 12% of the population, while Judaism represented 1%

  • Not influential as a religion in this time period.

  • Patriarchal society, women subordinate, the religion didn’t sway traditional roles.

  • Monotheistic

  • 7 Sacraments, steps to live a full life

  • Jesus and the 12 Disciples were the influential figures

  • Disciples recorded the way Jesus wanted life to be lived, much like Islam


  • Believed that no evil originates from the supreme god, Ahura Mazda, only good, and the evil tries to destroy, while the good destroys.

  • Founder: Zoroaster

  • Influential Figure: Ahura Mazda

  • Monotheistic

  • Formed in modern day Iran

  • Influenced many other religions such as Judaism, Christianity and Islam

  • About 145,000 followers

  • The Holy Book is the Avesta

  • Gender Roles: Both genders equal, don’t discriminate by sex at all

  • Overall, not very influential

Greek rationalism
Greek Rationalism

  • Theory that puts reason as the source of knowledge

  • Pythagoras, Plato, and Aristotle contributed to it, influential figures

  • No main founder

  • No main holy text

  • Made people question existence of divine figures

  • Unknown how many followers

  • Gender Roles: Patriarchal, very oppressive of women and children, both free and enslaved

  • Overall, made people begin to question previous religions, starting to lose faith in their holy figures


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