Religion has turnedout to be a recurrent topic of discussion in today’s world, may bedue to the increase in denominations around the world. Among the mainfeatures attributed to the growth in the religious foundation are thedifferences in belief of a superior being. People have a tendency tohave diverse opinions. Therefore, if an individual or a group ofindividuals differ in a certain congregation, they opt to move outand join another religion or still, create a new religious movement.In the United States of America, there exist very many religiousaffiliations some of which most people are not conversant with(Lehmann, 2013). The Umbanda and terasem are examples of unfamiliarreligions in the US.
Terasem is amovement in the USA which maintains that it is devoted to ensuringunity, joyful immortality as well as diversity among its followersand the world as a whole. Martine Rothblatt established the terasemmovement in 2004 with the help of other core founders. It is atranshumanist religion. The founders of terasem believe that there ispotential for extending human life by promoting unity among people.This movement achieves its objectives through an unending growth ofgeo-ethical nanotechnology (Steinhart, 2016). Once they gather asmany people as possible, they acquire a force they believe cancontrol cosmic physics. Unless a cosmic effect occurs, the terasemreligion serves the purpose of going around the state informingpeople on the practicality of unity, joyful immortality, anddiversity. The movement educates the public through presentingproblem-solving conventions, broadcasting The Truths of Terasem,representing human cryonics and organizing rituals.
Since its foundationin 2004, the religion has dedicated itself to fulfilling itsresolution to assist people in understanding geographic issues. Itis currently involved in projects such as the LifeNaut MidlifeProgram, Lifenaut.com, and Beme recordings all of which have thesimilar purpose. Followers of the religion are made to believe thatGod is scientific, death is discretionary, love is critical, and lifeis important. These principles are accompanied by ceremonies to provethe same elements. The religion, has, since its foundation, notcaused any wrangles in the USA. Its followers respect and interactwell with the members of other religious movements.
Umbanda, on theother hand, is a Brazilian religion that combines characteristics ofAfrican religions, Spiritism, Catholicism and Brazilian religion. Asa result of its synthesis of the three races that are responsible forBrazilian people, Umbanda is considered the first truly originalreligion (Rocha & Vasquez, 2013). It was founded by ZelioFernandino de Moraes, a psychic who lived in the early 1990’s. Theactual date set for the beginning of the religion is configured tobe15th November 1908. Most Umbanda followers call themselvesCatholics. Umbanda emerged from the Macumba, which had earlieroriginated from the African Banto religions. The term Umbanda wasfirst used in Rio de Janeiro to refer to different syncretic cults.Through the various federation works that under its umbrella in Rioand Sao Paul. Other than the federations, the religion has alsosignificantly developed as a result of gatherings that took place in1941, 1961, and 1973. They were able to gather as many people to jointhe movement as possible thus making it more influential. There aretwo basic tendencies in Umbanda religion are the African based andthe kardecist tradition.
The Umbanda religionis said to have very powerful symbols which include circles, arrowtriangles, crosses, and stars. The symbols can either have anindependent meaning or be combined to bring the desired meaning. Forinstance, the symbol of the heart is regarded as the most powerfuland is used to illustrate charity. Averagely, the movement isapproximated to have over twenty million followers. Despite the lackof uniformity among all the followers of Umbanda, there are somebeliefs that cut through almost all of them. Such common beliefsinclude having faith in the utmost Supreme Being whom they refer toas Zambi or Olorum. Additionally, most followers tend to seekinteraction with the dead, and they believe that some Catholic saintsemit holy forces and energies known as orixas.
In addition to that,Some Umbanda centers recognize in addition the spirits of gypsies,sailors, cowboys, and other marginal social types. Umbanda templesalso called terreiro, are headed by psychics who also control otherrituals that they engage in. They often meet in their temples forceremonies such as offering food, eating and drinking, chanting anddancing among others. Although this religion incorporates someCatholic aspects in its worship, most people regard it as ungodly(Quero & Shoji, 2016).
In conclusion, it isevident to say that there are so many religions that have sproutedand most people have no knowledge of their existence. Differentreligions arise with varied missions. For instance, the goals of theterasem movement differ from those of the Umbanda religion. Theirbeliefs too vary. The main differences between the two unfamiliarreligions that have been discussed in this paper are that despiteUmbanda being regarded ungodly by some people, the terasem movementhas not faced much opposition from the public (Jung, 2014).
Lehmann, D. (2013). Religion as heritage, religion as belief:Shifting frontiers of secularism in Europe, the USA and Brazil.International Sociology, 28(6), 645-662.
Jung, C. G. (2014). Collected Works of CG Jung, Volume 11:Psychology and Religion: West and East (Vol. 11). PrincetonUniversity Press.
Rocha, C., & Vasquez, M. A. (2013). The diaspora of Brazilianreligions. Brill.
Quero, H. C., & Shoji, R. (2016). Transnational Faiths:Latin-American Immigrants and Their Religions in Japan.Routledge.
Steinhart, E. (2016). Digital Theology: Is the Resurrection Virtual?.Philosophical Explorations of New and Alternative ReligiousMovements, 133.