Religion and Culture
As we know, religion is an important part of the human culture; it plays a vital role in the formatting and developing of languages. In the western world, religion is reflected in the aspects of social life, customs, culture and arts. It is a collection of beliefs about life, purpose, moral values.
Human create some symbols, narratives, traditions and sacred histories in order to give meaning to life or explain the origin of life and universe. People in the world believe in different religions, such as Buddhism, Christianity, Islam, and Catholicism. Religion differs from private belief because it has a public aspect.
Lots of religions have some well-organized behaviors, they constitute adherence and membership, have normal meetings and services for the intentions of veneration of a deity or for prayer, scriptures, and/or holy places, whatever it is natural or architectural.
Different religions also affect the culture of a nation. Christianity is the main religion in most Western countries. Therefore, God has long been deep-rooted in the heart of their people, affecting their language and carrying a great amount of cultural information.
In Britain, there are idioms like God knows, God bless you, act of God, God helps those who help themselves, man proposes, God disposes. The Bible is regarded as the Christian gospel classic, and many idioms are from it. For instance, Job’s patience, Judas kiss, as wise as Solomon, eye for eye, tooth for tooth.
These idioms show that the Bible has a great impact on English language.
However, Chinese culture is mainly dominated by Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism. Buddhism has been introduced in China about 1,000 years before, and people believe that there is a “Lord Buddha” who determines all things in the world.
As a result, there appears Buddhist-related idioms, such as “借花献佛”(borrow something to make a gift of it), “临时抱佛脚” (make effort at the last moment), “顶礼膜拜” (fall down in adoration; show great respect to), “道高一尺,魔高一丈” (when virtue rises one foot, evil rises ten).
Some Chinese idioms are derived from Confucianism. In one of the book written by Confucius, there are idioms like “Is it not delightful to have friends coming from afar?” (有朋自远方来,不亦乐乎), “When I walk along with two others, they may serve me as my teachers” (三人行,必有吾师焉). “What you do not want done to yourself, do not do to others.”(己所不欲，勿施于人).
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