Introduction to Religious Studies RELG110

This website accompanies a RELG 110 class taught at the USC in Spring 2010. The site is still evolving, so send me sites you think should be here! You can find a glossary of terms here and, in searchable form, on BB.

Course description

This course is an introduction to the field of religious studies. To this aim, we will explore a number of religious traditions. We will look at indigenous traditions, Hinduism, Buddhism, Zorastrianism, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Sikhism including atheism before turning to a discussion of contemporary issues  such as LGBT identities or ecology.

Course texts. Please purchase Mary Pat Fisher, Living Religions. A Brief Introduction. Pearson. Second Edition, 2009. ISBN 020563564-4. The Reader is available from University Copy on Main Street. You can also download a pdf version from Blackboard.

Note that the following section has not yet been entirely updated! Click on the headings for more information.

Religion today

Approaches to religious studies


A group of faiths rooted in the religious ideas of India.


A way of living based on the teachings of Siddartha Gautama.


One of the oldest monotheistic faiths, founded by the Prophet Zoroaster.


Based around the Jewish people’s covenant relationship with God.

Workshops: Hebrew Bible & Midrash, Mishna, and Talmud
Shabbat, Passover, and  Yom Kippur
Jews & Judaism in South Carolina


Based on the teachings of Jesus Christ.

Workshop: Early Christian literatures
Saints and the Reformation
Holidays & Practices


Revealed in its final form by the Prophet Muhammad.

Modern Muslim Identities
Workshops: Qur’an and the Prophet Muhammad
Principles of Faith
Sacred time: Hajj & Ramadan and  Ashura


Founded by Guru Nanak in India in the 15th Century CE.

Atheism & religious identity


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