Fall 2023: European, African, and Asian Adventure

PHIL 174 World Religions [CRN 74076]

Overview of Course

This course is an introduction to some of the most notable and widely practiced religions today: Buddhism, Christianity, Confucianism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, and Sikhism. We will examine the foundations and essentials of these religious traditions, including some of the core beliefs and practices of each one. This involves an examination of the globalization of each religion in terms of how they are expressed in their so-called “birth places” juxtaposed to their manifestations around the world, including the United States and the countries we visit as part of our Semester at Sea voyage. We will utilize primary and secondary sources, and experiential and historical-critical texts, including works of artistic expression, literature, personal narratives, and documentaries, touching on the diversity of how practitioners understand their religious and cultural identities in everyday life. Ultimately, this course aims for students to develop a basic comprehension of and appreciation for the complexities of these religions, while also developing a more nuanced grasp of each student’s own beliefs and practices in relation thereto, skills critical for engaging the myriad cultural realities found within the Semester at Sea voyage.