Masters Degree in Religion
Intensive of study of the various world religions is the hallmark of a Masters Degree in Religion. These programs are also sometimes referred to as a Masters in Religious Studies and cover the scriptural, theological and philosophical facets of world religions. Studies will include detailed reading of various scriptural sources, including the Bible, Koran and other major religious texts in an effort to understand their similarities and differences.
Critical analysis of various religious traditions, including Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism and various quasi-religious organizations is central to the Masters in Religion. The nature and psychology of belief is studied in depth, with the behavior of religious communities and their mythology being addressed through classroom lectures and independent research. Courses for the Masters Degree in religion will include sociology, anthropology, the art and literature of various religions and the politics of religion as well as ethical courses and philosophical investigation of the nature and meaning of life and death within a religious context.
The Masters in Religion Offers Cultural Understanding
Students may work toward a master in religion in order to advance a career associated with a particular religion or for a diplomatic or service career in which understanding of religion and culture within a group is essential to providing appropriate service or care. Others study for a master of religion for personal enrichment, desiring to better understand the beliefs and customs of those around them. Most masters in religion programs offer the opportunity to focus in one area of religion in depth. These students are often considering further study through a seminary or PhD program and choose a particular area of interest such as particular Scriptures or a particular religious movement for advanced study.
Careers That Can Benefit from a Masters Degree in Religion
Understanding the basis of belief systems around the world and the crucial tenants of the major religions in particular is desirable for those entering the non-profit service sector such as world aid organizations. The background in religious systems can enable them to interact more effectively with those in need and understand their culture and mores. Many students also go on to become religious instructors, ministers or missionaries, using their knowledge of world religions to help inform and instruct those within their own faith base.
Writers, journalists and politicians can also find a Masters in Religion valuable as they increasingly face a global arena where politics and commerce are often overshadowed by religious overtones and conflicts. Seminarians with an understanding of world religions are much sought after for their ability to do critical analysis and theological exploration of other faiths.
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