Religion owes a historical definition accepted globally as the ultimate belief in supernatural powers or being(s) having extraordinary powers. Religion ground people to a set of practices that makes it distinct about the various loyalties given the different supernatural powers. Individuals are also bound to follow a set of values, practices, and beliefs in reference to the being believed upon. The definition of religion obeys the three world’s major religions namely Judaism, Christianity, and Islam.
Religion also is ascertained as a feeling, practice, and dogmas that create a relationship between the living (human) and divinity or sacred. Some of the attributes applicable in defining religion are faith (religious feeling), the union between people who share the same faith, and the religious practices evidenced by a certain group. According to William James, religion is a form that makes it possible for human beings to realize what is real in themselves as well as the world (James 2012).
Religion is also attributed as a matter of faith feeling and emotions (David et al, 2001). It is the ultimate dependency on a being that proves to be present and indefinite (beyond comprehension). At times people tend to mistake religion with spirituality. Various groups reference spirituality as a connection with spirit entities or powers. Others refer to it as the lived experience of religion and not the belief itself. However, the terms refer to the same item.
To conclude, the meaning of religion is dependent on an individual’s starting point. An individual may tend to provide a definition that is based on science (anthropology) or it might mean differently for a person viewing it from a Christocentric perspective. Therefore, declaring the non-existence of a principle definition for religion would make every denomination feel unaffected.
David Barrett et al, “World Christian Encyclopedia: A comparative survey of churches and religions – AD 30 to 2200,” Oxford University Press, (2001).
James, William. 2012. “Religion And The Evolution Of Meaning: Is Meaning Made Or Perceived?”. Religion, Brain & Behavior 2 (3): 225-230. doi:10.1080/2153599x.2012.721215.