Glossary of religious terms
(Starting with "X", "Y" or "Z")
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Conservative Christian faith groups often define terms
very differently than other faith groups and secular
movements. The former are shown in italics
in the below lists of words.
Literally "wood worshipers."
A disrespectful term used to refer to Eastern
Orthodox believers who revered images and icons.
A vocalization. favored by most theologians, of
the tetragammaton -- the name of God ("JHWH")
found throughout the Hebrew Scriptures (Old Testament).
An alternative pronunciation is Jehovah.
a Jewish head covering traditionaly restricted
to males. "...the Code of Jewish Law says,
'It is forbidden to walk four cubits without a
head covering'." 1
Synonym: kippah (also spelled "kippa")
theory: A theory in which a day in some passages
of biblical prophecy is held to be equal to a
calendar year. This relationship is stated in
Numbers 14:34. The theory has found extensive
application in interpreting prophecies in Daniel
and Revelation. It has been used repeatedly to
estimate the second coming of Christ; the answers
always been wrong.
and yang: A Taoist belief that the universe
is make up of pairs of opposing forces, like male
and female, positive and negative. One's task
is to harmonize these forces, both within one's
body and in the rest of the universe. A mythical
"Yellow Emperor" wrote: ''The principle
of Yin and Yang is the foundation of the entire
universe. It underlies everything in creation.
It brings about the development of parenthood;
it is the root and source of life and death it
is found with the temples of the gods...Heaven
was created by the concentration of Yang, the
force of light, earth was created by the concentration
of Yin, the forces of darkness. Yang stands for
peace and serenity; Yin stands for confusion and
turmoil. Yang stands for destruction; Yin stands
for conservation. Yang brings about disintegration;
Yin gives shape to things..."
A Hindu method of learning that includes exercises,
breathing sequences and meditation. It is designed
to aid in enlightenment. The exercise component
of Yoga is often practiced in the West as an aid
to healthy living.
An ancient Celtic seasonal day of celebration
at the time of the winter
solstice. Depending upon the year,
the solstice may fall on DEC-20 to 23. A popular
minor Sabbat (holy day) observed by Wiccans and
Originally, the name of a small group of Pharisees
in 1st Century CE
Judea who used terrorist tactics to attack the
occupying Roman Army. Their goal was religious
and political independence from Rome. The term
has since evolved to refer to any extreme radical
religious group or individual.
A Japanese school of Buddhism which has become
popular in North America. It is similar to the
Chinese school of Buddhism known as Chan.
This religion was founded in ancient Persia, perhaps
during the sixth and seventh century BCE.
Many scholars believe that numerous religious
concepts first appeared in Zoroastrianism, and
were later adopted by Judaism, and Christianity.
These include: heaven, hell, resurrection of the
body, the Messiah, final judgment, and the battle
of Armageddon. Once a religion with many followers,
it currently only has about 200,000 members; most
live in Iran and India.
Rabbi Simmons: Kippah - Yarmulke," About.com
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