Religions
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Religions' Comparisons

Click on the following to see the webpage with information on differences in Bibles: http://bessel.org/bibles.htm 

Much of the information in this chart comes from sources that I believe are reliable, such as encyclopedias, almanacs, books, and people who I believe to be reliable who have sent me emails. I have sometimes included information on this chart when I believe, but do not know know, if it is accurate. I am always willing to add any comments that are sent to me, since I am not an expert on this subject.

If anyone wants to send me email, especially if any of the information on this chart is not correct or if you know of additional information that should be included, please send me email by clicking on my name:
Paul M. Bessel

The following is taken from an email message that was sent to me:  A major problem with a chart of this type is that it literally creates "walls" between certain religions. This is ok for Western religions (Christianity, Judaism, Islam, even Zoroastrianism) where the idea that one may only have one religion is prevalent, but it is totally artificial among the Eastern religions (Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, Taoism, Confucianism, Shinto). Among these it is common for people to practice more than one religion, i.e., a person may subscribe to Taoist cosmology, Confucian ethics, and Buddhist meditation without seeing any contradiction. The exceptions to this kind of tolerant multi-faith existence in the East are the Pure Land and Nichiren sects of Buddhism, which are rather exclusive and (in the case of Nichiren) surprisingly Triumphalist.  Otherwise, a laissai-faire attitude towards religion is the Eastern way of spirituality.

Table of (a) religions, (b) their name(s) of Deity, (c) their Volume(s) of Sacred Law, and (d) other information, details, and links.

Religion Name(s) of Deity
Volume(s) of Sacred Law
Other Information, Details, Links
Baha'i Faith God

The Book of Certitude
The al-Kitab al-Aqdas of Bahaism

http://www.bahai.org/ 

about 8 million worldwide, most in Asia and Africa, almost 1 million in North America

Buddhism
Mahayana (largest group)
Theravada (Hinayana) (2nd largest group)
Tantrayana (Lamaism) (smallest group, by far)

Vairocana -or- Dainichi (Shingon)
Amitabha or Amida (Pure Land)  
 Dharmakaya (Hinayana)
Kwannon (feminine, Japan only)

Hinayana (Theraveda) = Tripitaka (also know as the Pali Canon)
Mahayana = Sutras (Many Sutras; no sense listing)  
Vajrayana (Tantrayana) = Tantras

http://www.buddhanet.net/ 
http://pears2.lib.ohio-state.edu/  
http://www.tibet.com/  
http://www.churchward.com/rel.html  

Mahayana Sects:
Pure Land (Chinese Ching-t'u, Japanese Jodo-Shin)
Dhyana (Chinese Ch'an, Japanese Zen)  
 Madhayamika (Chinese T'ien T'ai, Japanese Tendai)  
  Mystery (Chinese Chen Yen, Japanese Shingon)
      Nationalist (Japanese Nichiren, Soka Gakkai)

over 350 million worldwide, most in Asia, more than 2 million in North America

Christianity (Christian)
African Methodist Episcopal
Amish
Anabaptist
Anglican
Assemblies of God
Baptist (Southern, National, National Missionary, Progressive National)
Calvinist
Catholic (Roman Catholic)
Christian Science
Church of Christ
Church of God
Congregationalist
Disciples of Christ
Episcopalian
Friends (Quaker)
Jehovah's Witnesses
Latter Day Saints (Mormon)
Lutheran
Mennonite
Methodist
Moravian
Mormon (Latter Day Saints)
Nazarene
Orthodox (Eastern, Greek, Russian, Coptic, Ethiopic, Romanian, other)
Pentecostal
Presbyterian
Protestantism
Quaker (Friends)
Rastafarian
Roman Catholicism
Salvation Army
Seventh Day Adventist
Shaker
Swedenborgian
Unification Church
Unitarian-Universalist
Wesleyan
God

Bible (Old Testament and New Testament - see below for more details about which books are included in the Christian Bible, for different Christian religions)
(for LDS) also the Book of Mormon
(for Catholics) The New American Bible

http://www.internetdynamics.com/pub/vc/christianity.html 
http://www.vatican.va/ 
http://www.clas.ufl.edu/users/gthursby/rel/xprotest.htm 
http://pcusa.org/  
http://www.sbcnet.org/resource.htm  
http://www.uua.org  
http://www.ucc.org/ 
http://www.umc.org/ 
http://www.oca.org/ 

almost 2 billion worldwide, most in Europe and Latin America, over 250 million in North America

Confucianism Shang Ti, "Heavenly Ruler"

Analects

http://www.enteract.com/~geenius/kongfuzi/  

over 6 million worldwide, almost all in Asia

Deism Providence

http://www.deism.com/ 

Ethical Culture http://www.aeu.org/ 
Gnosticism http://www.gnosis.org/naghamm/nhsearch.html 
Hinduism
Main Hindu Sects
("The Six Darshana"):
Nyaya
Vaisheshika
Sankhya
Yoga
Vedanta
Purva-Mimansa
Other Hindu Sects:
Shaktism
Brahmo Samaj
Arya Samaj
Ramakrishna

Vaishnavites (largest group)
Shaivites (minority group)

Brahman, Vishnu, Shiva, sometimes Krishna; many others

Vedas; Gitas

http://home-2.worldonline.nl/~waterput/  
http://www.hindunet.org/home.shtml  
http://www.vedavid.org  

about 750 million worldwide, almost all in Asia, more than 1 million in North America

Islam (Moslem)
Sunni (largest group, by far)
Shia (Shi' ite)
Sufi
Allah

Koran; Qur'an; Quran; (other books?) Hadith
3 different English translations of the Koran (Yusuf Ali, Pickthal and Shakir)

http://www.hti.umich.edu/relig/koran/
http://etext.virginia.edu/koran.html 
http://www.islamic-foundation.org/  
http://www.al-islam.org/  
http://www.arches.uga.edu/~godlas/  
http://www.salaam.co.uk/  

more than 1 billion worldwide, great majority in Asia, over 4 million in North America

Jainism
Shvetambara
("Earth-clad")
"Digambara"
("Sky-Clad")

Deity: None; Gods are held to exist but are remote finite beings

http://metalab.unc.edu/jainism/  
http://www.cs.colostate.edu/~malaiya/mahavira.html  
http://www.yja.org/  

4 million worldwide, almost all in Asia, 5 thousand in North America

Judaism (Jewish, Hebrew)
Orthodox
Conservative
Reform
Reconstructionist
Humanist
Hasidic
Karaite
Ashkenazi
Sephardi
God    (Substitute) Jewish Names of God: Adonai; Adonay; Eloheinu; Elohim;  Ha-Shem; El (pronounced "Ale"); Yahweh, YHVH; YHVH Tzva'ot; El Shaddai; G-d

Bible (other names for the Bible or parts of it, or other books): Tanach, Tanakh, Torah, Pentateuch, Talmud, Midrash

http://www.israel-mfa.gov.il/mfa/go.asp?MFAH00lf0  
http://www.chabad.org/  
http://www.uni-duisburg.de/FB1/JStudien/judaica.htm  
http://www.jcn18.com/scripts/jcn18/paper/Article.asp?ArticleID=1637  
http://www.jewishnet.net/  
http://www.jewfaq.org/  

about 15 million worldwide, most in North America and Asia, about 6 million in North America

Mandeism one God, called "Hayyi" which in Aramaic means "the Living" or life itself

http://home.sol.no/~noetic/mandse.htm 

Paganism there are said to be Nordic groups, Greek groups, Celtic groups, etc.

http://realmoflore.silvermoonrising.com/paganqus.htm 
http://www.tuxedo.org/~esr/faqs/paganism.txt 

Scientology http://www.scientology.org/scnhome.html 
Shinto All Japanese Deities are called "Kami"
Another name for Shinto: "Kami-no-Michi," Way of the Gods"
Izanagi, sky-father creator deity
Izanami, earth-mother creator deity
Amaterasu, Goddess of the Sun (VERY important)
Hachiman,  God of War

Koji-ki

http://www.shinto.org/  
http://www.silcom.com/~origin/sbcr/sbcr131  

almost 3 million worldwide, almost all in Asia, 54 thousand in North America

Sikhism

"True Name"
Hari (default, seldom uttered)
Maya (feminine, "illusion" implied

Granth; Adi Granth

http://www.rpi.edu/~anandh/NISHKAM/sikhism.html  
http://www.sikhs.org/topics.htm  
http://photon.bu.edu/~rajwi/sikhism/mansukh1.html  

over 22 million worldwide, almost all in Asia, almost 500 thousand in North America

Taoism Shang Ti, "Heavenly Ruler"

I-Ching and Tao-Te-Ching

http://www.clas.ufl.edu/users/gthursby/taoism/ 

From an email message:  Frankly I think at least "Tao Te Ching" (Theoretically written by Lao Tsu -- spelling optional at Lao Tze, etc.) is better than "I Ching" which essentially is a book of divination albeit with "Taoist" world view... with I recall off the top of my head annotations allegedly penned by Confucius (Gung-Fu-Tze and another bunch of optional transliterated spellings.)

Email message:  I'm certainly no authority on this, but you may (if you are already sure about this, forgive me) want to consider changing "I Ching" to "Tao Te  Ching". The Tao Te Ching is set of 81 chapters written by Lao Tzu, and I  believe that it would be more clearly the Taoist VSL then the "I Ching". I  think that "I Ching" is more commonly associated with a technique of  divination.

(I believe) almost 400 million worldwide, almost all in Asia, about 750 thousand in North America

Wicca http://www.blast.net/norm3vog/faq.html 
Zoroastrianism
Parsee

Good: Ahura-Mazda, Ormazd
Evil: Ahriman
Good Spirit: Spenta Mainyu
Evil Spirit: Angra Mainyu

Zend-Avesta; Gathas

http://www.avesta.org/avesta.html  
http://www.fezana.org/  
http://www.stanford.edu/group/zoroastrians/  
http://www.zarathushtra.com/  

272 thousand worldwide, almost all in Asia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Names of Deity

The following are said to be various names used by different religions for Deity, according to an email message that was sent to me by a Mason, Rod Larson:

Aba, Abba (father in Hebrew)
Abai
Abba (see Aba, and also New Testament, God, Mark xiv. 36.)
Abai
Adon (Hebrew - Lord)
Adonai, Adonay (Hebrew - my Lord - emphatic form of Adon which means lord or master. Used as a proper name that refers to God only)
Agaayun
Agni
Ahura Mazda (Zoroastrian)
Akua
Ala
(Earth and fertility goddess of the Ibo people of Nigeria. Also, goddess of the underworld. Daughter of the great god Chuku)
Allah (Islam - God)
Amaterasu (Japanese - Sun goddess and principle deity)
Amma (Latin, or Creator god of the Dogon people of Mali)
Amut
Arnam
Asdulaz
Asdulza
Asila

Banara
Bao
Bari
Bathala
Bhagawan (India - literally means God)
Bog (Polish - God)
Boh
Bozymy
Brahma (Hindu - 1st member of the Trinity. Creator of the universe)
Cernunos
Chaacs (Mayan - rain god)
Chiuta
Christ
Chukwu (African -  translation of God)
Deews
Deo (Latin)
Deus (Latin, or Portuguese - God)
Dev, Deva (Sanskrit, Hindu)
Devel
Dieu (French)
Dio
Dios (Spanish - God)
Dioz
Dok
Droue
Dumnezeu
Efozu
El (pronounced "ale," Hebrew)
El Shaddai (Hebrew)
Eloha (Hebrew)
Elohai (Hebrew)
Elohaynu (Hebrew)
Elohim (Hebrew)
F'sahg
Foy
G-d
Gad
Gaddel
Gado
Gaia, Gaea (Greek - term relating to God of absolute unity with the Earth)
Ganga
Gatt
Gedepo
God
Godd (Middle English)
The Goddess (Wicca)
Godh (Icelandic)
Godimli
Gosped
Gospod (Russian)
Got (Middle High German)
Gud (Swedish, Danish, Icelandic, Norwegian - God)
Gupti
Guth (Gothic)
Hananim
HaShem ("the name," in Hebrew)
Hera (Greek -  Mother/God of the universe)
Hyel
Ibmel
Igziabiheif
Imana (Creator god of the Rwandans)
Indra (Sanskrit, Hindu - Warrior; most important god of Rig-Veda)
Ishtar, Ishwar (Babylonian, Persian)
Isor
Isten
Jahweh
Jee
Jehovah (Lord God. Translation of Yahweh)
Jesus
Jincouac
Jove (Latin)
Jumala (Finland - God)
Juno
Jupiter
Kalou
Kami (Japanese -  Innumerable deities which may be interpreted as gods)
Khong
Khuda
Kot
Krishna (Sanskrit, Hindu)
Kunzi
Kwoth (Sudan -  Supreme being worshipped by Nuer, Nilotic people of Sudan)
Kyala (Creator god of the Nyakyasa of south-west Tanzania)
Leza (Chief god of the Zimbabwean Bantu tribes)
Lord
Lubah
Maadaru
Manitou (American Indian - Native Alaskan - Eskimo. A fearsom epagan winter-Earth spirit, sometimes interpreted as evil, capable of manifesting itself powerfully)
Mawu (Sky god of the Ewe people of Togo)
Maxam
Mulungu (East-African-Shambaa in modern Northeast Tanzania - translation of "God" - Creator god of Yao of Malawi)
Muneto
Naibata
The Name (Jewish)
Nan
Nawen
Ngai (Vietnamese -  God)
Ngewo (Creator god of the Mende of Sierra Leone)
Nialic
Nkulu Kumba
Nom (Latin)
Norin
Nun
Nyambe (God of the Koko of Nigeria)
Nyasaye (God of the Maragoli people of Kenya)
Nzua
Nzzapa
Oco
Odin (Norse, Danish)
Oghene
Olorun (Supreme god of the Yoruba people. Considered too remote for worship. Son of Olokun)
Oqmasi
Ormazd, Ormuzd (Zoroastrian, Ancient Persian -  Supreme god; originally Ahura Mazda)
Othin (Teutonic)
Owo
Owuso
Pai
Paz
Perendia (Albanian - God)
Prajow
Ra (Egyptian)
Rabi
Ramwa
Rongo
Rua
Ruata
Rum
Shango (Trinidad - Cult of African origin worshipping spirits of the dead. Thunder-god of the Yoruba of West Aftica)
Shangti
Shashe
Shen
Shido
Shiva, Siva (Sanskrit - Hindu - 3rd member of the Trinity. Destruction and Reproduction)
Sibu
Sikwembu
Siyeh
Soko
Tanara
Tane
Tataa
Tengri (Mongolian for "Father Sky" and represents a pre-Buddhist, shamanistic name for God - unofficial Deity of the Mongol Empire and much of China during the Mongol occupation, and the name continues in use today among  shamans in middle Asia)
Tentei
Tetragammaton (not a name for Deity, but a way of referring to the letters that make up the name of Deity in Hebrew)
Tev
Theos (Greek -  Literally meaning God)
Thixo
Torym
Tsuku
Tswashe
Tumpa

Ualare
Unguluve
Vishnu (Sanskrit -  Hindu - with Brahma & Siva forms a trinity - 2nd member of the Trinity. The Preserver) Wain
Waqa
Were
Wod (Middle German)
Wodin, Wodan, Woden, Votan, Wotan (Teutonic)
Xwede Yah (Hebrew - short for of Yahweh -  Meaning God)
Yahweh (Hebrew -  God - Translation of the unspoken, unnamed God of the Children of Israel. Often written as the tetragrammaton) YHWH
Yala
Yamba
YHVH
YHVH Tzva'ot
Ywa
Zambe
Zeus (Greek)
Zikhle
Zin (a Songhay water spirit)



California Grand Lodge's List of VSLs and Religions

The Holy Bible of Christianity
The al-Kitab al-Aqdas of Bahaism
The Tripitaka of Buddhism
The Analects of Confucianism
The Vedas of Hinduism
The Koran of Islam
The Tanach of Judaism
The Koji-ki of Shintoism
The Adi Granth of Sikhism
The Tao-te Ching of Taoism
The Zend Avesta of Zoroastrianism
The Liber Al vel Legis of the Gnostic Catholic Church

 

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