Faith Comparison Studies

TheAncient of Ancient Pathway is Enochian, based on the belief in the Aythers, spiritual or extra-dimensional beings which are both omnipresent and omnipotent.   They provide guidance though this life by communion and meditation.

At the same time, TheAncient keeps an open mind, studying different religions around the world.

The following information is an at-a-glance guide to the major religious followings, sects and belief systems.   This is only a very standard overview.

Religion / Belief system Origins Followers God and the Universe Human Perspective Afterlife view Practices Main Texts
Aladura Various. Prophet healing churches found about 1918 in West Nigeria 1,000,000+ Monotheistic with African beliefs Healing and salvation through prayer, meditation, fasting and other rituals. Various views Rituals and spiritual healing none
Asatru This is a modern day revival of Norse and Germanic beliefs in the 1970s in Scandinavia No valid numbers Norse Gods and creation myths - Polytheistic Fatalist view of the universe with no emphasis on redemption or salvation. Valhalla for death in battle.  Hel for most people and Hifhel for the very evil. Nine noble virtues as a moral code. Celebrations of the Solstice holidays. Sacrifice of food and drink Eddas and the Havamal
Atheism As far as can be determined, no origin Over 1 Billion Science base. No gods or divine beings Only humanity can help itself. none none Marx, Freud, Chung as well as modern authors such as Richard Dawkins and Carl Sagan.
Buddhism Founded by Siddharta Gautama commonly accepted as the Buddha.  India 520BC 360,000,000 Buddha taught that nothing is permanent. Very polytheistic depending on following. Avoid suffering and gain enlightenment and release from the cycle of rebirth by gaining merit Reincarnation until fully enlightened. Mandalas, deity devotion, mediation and mantras. Tripitaka, Mahayana sutras and others.
Chinese Faith Indigenous Chinese people 394,000,000 Mythological beings and folk deities. Based on the Yin and Yang Honoring of ancestors, ritualization and favorable/peaceful life Judgment and reincarnation. Temporary hell. Divination, prophecy, astrology, prayer, feng shui and ancestor worship. none
Christianity Founded by Jesus Christ in Israel 30 AD 2 Billion Single almighty God as a holy trinity with the Father, son and holy spirit All have sinned. Salvation is through belief in Christ, sacraments and good works. Heaven, Hell and in some cases purgatory. Numerous holidays, Sabbath worship, Eucharist, prayer and bible study. The Holy Bible - old and new testaments.
Christian Science Founded by Mary Baker Eddy in 1879 350,000 Single God with no trinity.   Evil does not exist. Salvation is "Life, love and truth as demonstrated supreme over sin, sickness and death. Heaven is not a physical location but a state of mind where all is in harmony Prayer and knowledge leading to spiritual healing.  Sabbath services and daily bible reading. Plus "science and health" study. Christian Bible, Science and Health.
Confucianism Founded between 551 and 479 BC by Confucius 5,000,000 No gods are mentioned You must fulfill your role in society with honor and loyalty. No afterlife is mentioned Honesty, humaneness, proper role in society, loyalty to family and nation.   Emphasis on politeness and honesty. Analects
Druze Roots in Shia Islam - Cairo Egypt - 11th century Unknown Single creator god that has no interest in its creation not addressed not addressed Prayer "The Age of Reason" by Thomas Paine and other similar texts.
Gnosticism First and second century AD with various teachers. Modern revival of an ancient extinct group One supreme god that is unknowable.   The creator god is evil as is all matter. Human being can return to a spiritual world through secret universal knowledge. Return to an unknown spiritual world. Asceticism, celibacy Gnostic scriptures.
Hare Krishna 15th Century Hindu movement with rebirth in 1966 USA by Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada Up to 1,000,000 Krishna is the supreme God Salvation through Krishna Consciousness Reincarnation until we reunite with the Godhead Chanting, Dancing, Evangelism, Vegetarianism, temple worship. The Bhagavad-Gita
Hinduism Indigenous religion of India ancient times to modern day. 900,000,000 One supreme reality that can manifest as many gods and goddesses Human beings are in bondage to ignorance and illusion.  Gain release from rebirth OR a better rebirth. Reincarnation until you achieve enlightenment. Meditation, Yoga, puja, pilgrimage, live to ones dharma or role. The Vedas, Bhagavad Gita.
Islam Founded by Muhammad in 622AD - Saudi Arabia 1.3 billion and 940 million Sunni Allah Human beings must submit to the will of god to gain paradise after death Paradise or Hell Five pillars, faith, prayer, alms, pilgrimage, fasting, Mosque services, No alcohol or pork The Qur'an for scripture
Hadith for Tradition
Jainism Founded in 550BC - Eastern India 4,000,000 The Universe is external.  There are many Gods and all living things are in a complex hierarchy. The purpose of life is to break free of the cycle of rebirth by avoiding all bad Karma. Reincarnation until liberation from the cycle of re-birth. Five great vows - Non-violence, Truth, Celibacy, Non-stealing,Non-possessiveness.  Worship from home and at temple, meditation and mantras The teachings of Mahavira
Jehovah Witness Founded by Charles Taze in Pittsburg, PA 1879 6,500,000 One god named Jehovah.  No holy trinity.  Christ is the first creation of God and the holy spirit is just a force. The world is going to end soon and salvation is reached though faith in Christ and by following the laws of Jehovah. No Hell.   Heaven is only for 144,000 witnesses, all other beings will be annihilated.  The chosen will exist on "new earth" No blood transfusions, no holidays, no use of images, crosses or symbols.  Baptism, kingdom hall service. New world translation of the Christian scriptures.
Judaism Hebrew religion founded about 1300BC 14,000,000 One god named Yahweh Focus on this life instead of the next.   Obey the commandments of God. Little emphasis is put into the question of afterlife. Synagogue services, no pork or any non-kosher foods.   Circumcision at birth and Bar/Bat Mitzvah at adulthood.  Holidays related to historical events. The Bible and the Talmud
Mormonism Joseph Smith, 1830 New York, USA 12,000,000 God - Jesus Christ - Holy Ghost all as separate individual beings Prior to live, human beings existed as spirits.  Salvation is a return to God. All return to the spirit world for instructions before resurrection. Mormons go to heaven with god, hell is for those that reject god after death. Abstinence from tobacco, coffee, tea and alcohol.  External marriage, temple garments under clothing and baptism for the dead. Christian Bible, Book of Mormon, Pearl of Great Price
New Age Many founders including Helena Petrovna Blavatsky. 5,000,000+ The divine is a mystical force that pervades all things Spiritual transformation and ascension Reincarnation based on Karma Astrology, divination, crystals, mysticism, yoga, holistics, psychic abilities, channeling, amulets etc. Various new age authors.
Satanism (modern) Founded in 1966 by Anton LaVey unknown - these numbers are kept private by the Satanic Church Atheistic or agnostic Belief and adherence to the nine satanic statements None recorded Ritualization, meetings, questioning authority The Satanic Bible
Scientology Founded by L. Ron Hubbard in California, 1954 Numbers vary depending on source God is non-Specific. Gain spiritual freedom by ridding the mind of engrams.   The human being consists of Body, mind and thetan. Reincarnation Education and recovery programs which use "auditing" to progress up various levels until "clear" The writings of L. Ron Hubbard.
Wicca Ancient belief system modernized by Gerald Gardner in the early 1900s 3-8 million depending on source Polytheism which is centered on the God/Goddess dynamic with a supreme power. "An harm ye none, do as ye will" Reincarnation until you reach "Summerland" Prayer, casting circles, spell work, drawing down the moon, singing, dancing, celebrations, Sabbats, sharing of cake, wine and beer. Various authors.

NOTE:  This list is far from complete.  There are hundreds of beliefs, faiths and followings out there.  The best way to learn about them is to experience them.   ~TheAncient