Religions before Christianity

 “Hindu synthesis” started to develop between 500 BCE and 300 CE, after the Vedic times. Hinduism religion follows idol worship. This religion was not highly followed and was prevalent in South Asia only. On the study of Abrahamic religion’s origin, it was shown that Judaism came much before Christianity and Islam. 

Timeline:
• 3/4th world population followed Hinduism as their religion

• 1/4th world’s population followed Judaism, Jainism, Buddhism, Egyptian god, Roman god, etc.

• Somebody from that 1/4th population thought of a new in form of Christianity and started spreading this belief to the world.• The Viking Age religion, with many gods in Scandinavia were all pagans with hatred for Christianity.

• The Rig Veda of ancient Hinduism is estimated to have been composed between 1700–1100 BCE

• Roman religion also called Roman mythology, beliefs and practices of the Italian peninsula from ancient times until the ascendancy of Christianity in the 4th century ad.

• Old Norse religion is a branch of Germanic religion developed during the Proto-Norse period, when the North Germanic peoples separated into a distinct branch of the Germanic peoples. … Old Norse religion was polytheistic, entailing a belief in various gods and goddesses.

• Majority of Africans are adherents of Christianity or Islam. African people often combine the practice of their traditional belief with the practice of Abrahamic religions. Abrahamic religions are widespread throughout Africa. 

Emergence of Christianity
As Christianity emerged from Second Temple Judaism (or Hellenistic Judaism), it stood in competition with other religions advocating pagan monotheism, including the cult of Dionysus, Neoplatonism, Mithraism, Gnosticism, and Manichaeanism.- 1 century birth of Christianity- 7th century was for IslamChristianity was made the official religion of the Roman Empire by the Emperor Constantine in the 4th century AD. 

Oldest religions
The Upanishads (Vedic texts) were composed, containing the earliest emergence of some of the central religious concepts of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. The Olmecs built the earliest pyramids and temples in Central America. 

New religious movement
Heathenry, also termed Heathenism, contemporary Germanic Paganism, or Germanic Neopaganism, is a modern Pagan religion. Scholars of religious studies classify Heathenry as a new religious movement. Its practitioners model it on the pre-Christian belief systems adhered to by the Germanic peoples of Iron Age and Early Medieval Europe. To reconstruct these past belief systems, Heathenry uses surviving historical, archaeological, and folkloric evidence as a basis, although approaches to this material vary considerably. Heathenry does not have a unified theology but is typically polytheistic, centering on a pantheon of deities from pre-Christian Germanic Europe. It adopts cosmological views from these past societies, including an animistic view of the cosmos in which the natural world is imbued with spirits. In the 15th century, Christendom embarked on a global program to convert the “heathen.” What kind of religion had these “heathen” peoples been practicing up until that time? And did any subsequent conversion to “Christianity” touch their heart or only cause them to drop to their knees in formal submission? In Africa there are an estimated 700 ethnic groups south of the Sahara. Originally, each had its own tribal religion, although their similarities betray a common origin. In Australia, the Americas, and the isles of the Pacific, dozens of other indigenous religions are to be found. Most believe in one supreme GOD and yet, polytheistically, still make room for any number of lesser deities —family, clan, or communal gods. One study made of the Aztec religion lists more than 60 distinct and interrelated names of deities.

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