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Social Sci LibreTexts

11: Religion (Henninger-Rener)

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    • Define religion and explain its significance in human cultures.
    • Summarize theories developed by anthropologists to explain the importance of supernatural beliefs in human communities.
    • Identify the four elements of religion (cosmology, belief in the supernatural, rules of behavior, and rituals) and explain how each element contributes to religious practices.
    • Define rites of passage, rites of intensification, and rites of revitalization and explain the purpose of each type of ritual.

    Thumbnail image - Head shaman of Olkhon at Lake Baikal. Buryatia, Russia. By Аркадий Зарубин (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons.​​​