Religions Of The World Part IV – Isms

There are a few ‘isms’ around so, no offence to any ‘ism’ but I’m lumping you all together. Well? It’s your own fault for being an ‘ism’ so there.


We’ve got Buddhism, Hinduism, Sikhism, Judaism (I know they’ll be pissed off to not get their own bit. Tough.), Korean shamanism, Caodaism, Jainism, Cheondoism, Hoahaoism, Tenriism, Zoroastrianism, Confucianism and, finally, as far as I can ascertain, Shintoism.

So there you have it. A religious world of ‘isms’.

The religious world of ‘isms’ tends to be generally around Asia – although, of course, immigration has put ‘isms’ pretty much everywhere.

Of the ‘isms’, there are often ‘sub isms’ within the ‘ism’ – and before you say “What the hell is he on about?” It’s true! Some of the religious ‘isms’ do actually have ‘sub isms’. For example, Hinduism which originates in the Indian sub continent includes Shaivism, Vaishnavism and Shaktism. See? ‘Sub isms’.

I tried a bit of research into all these ‘isms’ but, frankly, I got fed up. Religion does that to me you know. I get all fidgety and bored.

As a result I’ve decided to chat about the ‘isms’ through personal experience. Unfortunately I have no personal experience of Korean shamanism, Caodaism, Jainism, Cheondoism, Hoahaoism, Tenriism, Zoroastrianism, Confucianism or Shintoism so that lot will just have to settle for having had a mention.

Buddhism : My daughter flirted with Buddhism shortly after first going to university. I have no idea why but my wife suggested that my resemblance to Buddha whilst sitting cross legged in the living room in my boxer shorts was uncanny. As my daughter is a bit of a ‘daddy’s girl’ perhaps therein lies the explanation. She lost interest after several days when she met her boyfriend – who does not resemble Buddha in any way.

Buddhism seems to be a peaceful quite laid back religion so you have to like it don’t you? Besides, most of them seem to do some form of Kung-fu so you don’t want to get on the wrong side of this particular ‘ism’ eh?

Hinduism: I have Hindu neighbours across the road. The day after they moved in 25 years ago they had a pipe burst. I fixed it for them. Since then they have been my pals and, when the wifey wasn’t well, brought me food over for several days to ensure I ate. I had a freezer full of food and it was entirely unnecessary of them to do this but they insisted and, as I adore all spicy curry like food I put on several pounds. I like my neighbours across the road enormously. They are lovely caring friendly people. I have taught a number of Hindu’s to drive and, without exception, I have found them to be the same as my neighbours.

I like Hinduism. They seem a very peaceful and happy people although, based on my neighbours comments from time to time, they seem to have a major problem with Islam. Possibly because it isn’t an ‘ism’?

Sikhism : Now I know many people think of Sikh’s as a proud and honourable people and I’m sure they are. Unfortunately the one’s living near me are selfish, self centred and disrespectful of anything not related to Sikhism. As I speak as I find and I haven’t found any decent Sikh’s myself I can only judge the two families near me. I have taught a few Sikh’s to drive and they’ve been fine but, then again, as I’m their driving instructor they have to be or I’ll kick them out of the car and make them walk home.

The two Sikh families in my street are ridiculously noisy. The one’s immediately next door set up a meeting room in their back bedroom. At least 30 Sikhs arrived and much chanting ensued. I knocked on the door and pointed out to them that they were disturbing their neighbours and such behaviour should occur in a Temple not a back bedroom. They were upset and declined to stop. I advised them of my bayonet collection and a willingness to demonstrate the effectiveness of a bayonet and also my willingness  to play my wife’s Meatloaf records at maximum volume until 4 in the morning. Suffice to say the chanting stopped.

Sikh’s may be lovely in general but ‘our’ Sikh’s are bloody awful. For me, the jury is out on Sikhism.

Judaism : Whilst I have no personal experience regarding Judaism I adore Ziva David on NCIS which is a positive start. The Jewish people don’t need me to say anything about them as everyone knows everything about them. Their lack of a country and persecution through the decades. Did you know that ‘Mile End’ in East London is so called because there was a time when no Jew was allowed within a mile of central London? The Jews had it pretty rough until the Nazi’s came along and then it went a bit further than pretty rough.

I admire them and respect them – although I do wish they’d stop blowing up schools in Gaza. I know all about the Hamas tunnel stuff but come on! Can you really justify blowing up kids? Mind you former late Israeli leader Golda Meir once said something to the effect of “There will not be peace in the middle east until the Palestinians learn to love their children more than they hate us” – I’m sure the quote isn’t spot on but it’s close enough.

Anyway. Orthodox Judaism maintains that the Torah and Jewish law are divine in origin, eternal and unalterable, and that they should be strictly followed. Conservative and Reform Judaism are more liberal, with Conservative Judaism generally promoting a more “traditional” interpretation of Judaism’s requirements than Reform Judaism. A typical Reform position is that Jewish law should be viewed as a set of general guidelines rather than as a set of restrictions and obligations whose observance is required of all Jews.

I’ll leave Judaism at that or it’ll take up your life reading it all – which possibly suggests I should have given this particular ‘ism’ it’s own bit but it’s religion and you know I get bored and fidgety.

Technically there is another ‘ism’ that I haven’t mentioned yet. The question is, of course, is it a religion or a cult? Personally I think it’s a cult but as there are so many religious cults to sample in Part whatever it will be when I get to them I think I’ll have a pop at this one under ‘isms’.

The Unification Church formed by the late lunatic Sun Myung Moon in Korea in the 1940’s is often better known as ‘The Moonies’  or ‘Mooneyism’ hence it’s inclusion with other ‘isms’.

Moonies : (Taken from ‘ “The beliefs of the church are explained in the book Divine Principle and draw from the Bible as well as Asian traditions and include belief in a universal God; in the creation of a literal Kingdom of Heaven on earth; in the universal salvation of all people, good and evil as well as living and dead; that Jesus did not come to die; and that the Lord of the Second Coming must be a man born in Korea early in the 20th century who must marry and have children.”

Well, seeing as there isn’t a Korean Jesus around and it’s the 21st Century that sort of screws them up eh? There is a rumour that there was lots of sex with beautiful women going on in The Moonies. If so I really really don’t like Moonies because I missed out.

So, that’s the end of the religious ‘isms’ in my ‘Religions Of The World’ saga. If I carry on like this I’ll be banned from any and every religion but, as I have yet to find one with a heavenly bar and a Swedish massage parlour, DILLIGAF?

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Posted by on August 8, 2014. Filed under COMMENTARY/OPINION. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.
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2 Responses to Religions Of The World Part IV – Isms

  1. Pennyjane Hanson

    August 8, 2014 at 11:09 pm

    i’m curious norman. while the right side of your brain is drooling all over ziva…..isn’t the left side secretly yearning for kate?