Traditionally, religion is defined as a social-cultural system. It includes practices, beliefs, and texts. It also includes worldviews and organizations.
Ancient Sumerians had a complex pantheon
Despite their primitive culture, the Ancient Sumerians had a complex pantheon of religion. Their religion was a polytheistic one and arose from speculation about the nature of the physical world. It portrayed the forces of nature as personified. Each city had its own patron deity, and the ruler had a duty to please this deity.
Ancient Sumerians had a code of behavior or a set of rituals
During the Early Dynastic period, the inhabitants of Mesopotamia believed that a dome-shaped firmament was the origin of the universe. Earth was the center of the dome and the saltwater ocean called Nammu existed beneath the earth. The earth was inhabited by many gods. The deities of the heavens included An, Ninhursag, and Utu. The god of the sun, Shamash, was also revered by the people.
Ancient Neanderthals had ancestor worship
During the last ice age, Neanderthals lived in caves and were intelligent and skilled at using tools. They were also a social people. However, they did not have livestock and were not fully human. Their tools were made from stone, wood, or bone.
Ancient Greeks had a code of behavior
During the fourth century Athenian justice was administered by the popular court of Areopagus. It was a trial in which the legitimacy of the claim to seize the person, goods and wealth of a defendant was determined. This was an interesting experiment in law and society.
Ancient Romans had a code of behavior
Throughout the ancient Roman empire, they had a code of behavior that defined the relationships between individuals and the state. Using terms such as dignitas, pudicitia, and gravitas, the Romans expected specific behaviours from their citizens.
Although they were strict about their moral code, they did not allow rape or pederasty. The ancient Romans believed that the only way to survive in a hostile environment was to adhere to a code of behavior.
Ancient Sumerians had a cosmographic criterion
During the early 4th century BC, a group of humans began settling in what would become the ancient civilization of Sumer. This area lay between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in southern Iraq. They built a group of city-states that were separated by villages and towns. Each city-state had its own king, but they all had a common language.
Ancient Hindus had a code of behavior
During the Vedic Period (500 BCE – 500 AD), ancient Hindus had a code of behavior that emphasized dharma and ahimsa. These virtues represent an attitude of benevolence and purity. The word ahimsa means tolerance of all living creatures.
The Vedas are the oldest of Hindu sacred texts. They contain revelations from ancient saints and are regarded as the ultimate authority. They also include prayers, magic spells, and hymns. These texts were passed down from generation to generation by word of mouth. They were originally written in Sanskrit, a language of ancient India.
Ancient Greeks had a cosmographic criterion
During the Archaic period, mystery cults began to emerge. These were religious institutions that tended to uphold certain texts as canonic within their praxis. They were not, however, necessarily accepted by the wider public.
The most important cults were those associated with Athens and Corinth. In the Archaic period, there were a number of gods and goddesses associated with these cities. Often, these deities would be local and would have their own epithets. The identification of different deities with different places remained strong to the end of Antiquity.
Ancient Egyptians had a code of behavior
During the ancient period of Egypt, there was a strong code of behavior based on religion. The gods were believed to have a kind and compassionate nature. They were charged with maintaining justice in the world. Priests made offerings to the gods in order to ensure that they fulfilled their duties.
Ancient Greeks believed in a god
Throughout the ancient world, people believed in a god. In ancient Greece, they practiced rituals and ceremonies to please their gods and get good fortune. In their temples, they made special places for the gods. They would present them with gifts and food, and also practice sacrifices.