Portal talk:Religion

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Portal review
Portal Religion
Classification BL
Class B: Philosophy, Psychology and Religion
Subclass L: Religion
Classifier AdamBMorgan

Need texts[edit]

Need texts! Also, I'm not particularly married to the organisation scheme, it's just off the top of my head. —Ashley Y 06:42, 27 Dec 2003 (UTC)

That's fine. Apart from the word "paganism", which I've removed, I find that it is a good beginning. As one who would tend to be highly critical of having a too long list of top level categories, I must say that I found this one easy to accept. I did consider the possibility of putting it in priority above "Historical documents" on the list. This reflects the view that a text that can be on either list should by preference be on the religious texts list. Eclecticology 20
16, 27 Dec 2003 (UTC)

Hello, I'm back to WS after a long absence (during most of which I had no computer access), and now I'll try to contribute from time to time. I noticed that "Religious Texts" was added. Actually, from the beginning I thought they should be here, because they are of broad interest to a wide range of people, but I thought they could be an important part of a subject index. Actually, though, now that I see it listed on the left as one of the "special" categories, I think it was probably the right thing to do, precisely because of the special interest it holds for people.


In my opinion, however, the recent addition of Old Testament versions (Septuagint, Vulgate, KJV) under "Judaism" should be reconsidered. First of all, it is well known that there is no such thing as the "Old Testament" in the Jewish tradition. Secondly, these are Christain texts: the Vulgate and the KJV are the work of Christians; the Septuagint, while produced by Jews in ancient times and even used by them, has still not been part of the Jewish tradition for millenium and was only preserved as an important document by the Church. Thus, I suggest that these be moved to "Christianity." If no-one objects in the near future I will make the change (or someone else can).

I suggest that for Judaism (and each group for which we upload texts) we respect its traditions, and if a Jewish version of the Bible is included on WS we call it "Hebrew Bible" or "Tanakh".

By the way, I'm going to add "The Mishnah" now, as a suggestion of a text that I would love to see a free version of.Zabek 12:43, 12 Jan 2004 (UTC)

I really don't think that the suggested move would be a good idea. The original nature is perhaps most important for classification if we are going to avoid confusing people. There is no doubt that the basis for what is now called the "Old Testament" was originally a Jewish text. Is anything other than the Hebrew version considered a strictly Jewish text? I would tend to consider these various translations a Christian adaptations rather than Christian texts, and perhaps the lines linking to the translations could show that. Eclecticology 18:37, 12 Jan 2004 (UTC)
I agree with Eclecticology. The idea is that translations should fall under the primary material. So the Septuagint derives from the Hebrew Bible, so it belongs underneath. Ashley Y
As for the names, I think as much as possible we should use whatever names the texts call themselves, in the original language and script if possible. Certainly for the KJV translation, that's "The Old Testament". I don't know what the others are, doubtless someone who does can change them. The name of the Hebrew originals should be the Hebrew names if Hebrew script is not a problem, IMO. —Ashley Y 07:51, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Hebrew script works fine in Unicode. These titles can be accompanied by a romanization. Eclecticology 10:38, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)
Thanks for your comments; after reading them I more or less agree with both of you. Firstly, I it is definitely true that putting various versions and translations under a different category would be quite confusing - translations should indeed fall under the source material. I also like the idea that we should use whatever names the texts call themselves. (Which would mean, by the way, that LXX should be a translation of "Hebrew Bible" but Vulgate is "Old Testament.") You ask, BTW, if any other text than the Hebrew is considered a Jewish text. The answer is yes: The Aramaic Targumim are a product of the classical rabbinic tradition and are still part of traditional Jewish practice to this very day. (Yemenite Jews still read them along with the Hebrew, and they are always printed with the standard Jewish commentaries. This is opposed to the LXX which is only historically Jewish.)
Perhaps the following might add clarity, reduce confusion, and also reduce any possible bias: To divide the category "Hebrew Bible" into subsections such as the following (off the top of my head):
    • Masoretic Text
    • Ancient and Classical Versions (which would include Qumran variants, LXX, Peshitta, etc.)
    • Rabbinic Targum

When it comes to English translations of all these things, once again I like the idea of using whatever the the texts call themselves. Perhaps it might be good to have separate subsections for translations from Christian versus Jewish orientations.

Sorry I forgot to Log In. These last comments were mine.Zabek 15:57, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)

The subsections are probably a good idea, but there's no need to do very much of it until we have more real texts in place, and have a better understanding of actual needs. Just what we have listed now is going to involve a lot of work. The Hebrew Bible alone is quite long, and there are considerations about how long a Wikisource page should be without causing undue strain on some user's slow browser. The Portal:Religious texts page would be a high level Table of Contents in a top down scheme of organization. Eclecticology 17:50, 13 Jan 2004 (UTC)


I see that Mormonism was moved from under the Christianity section. There is some controversy over whether Mormonism is a Christian religion. I originally put the religion under Christianity since Mormons consider themselves Christian, they accept Jesus Christ as Savior of mankind, and the official name of the church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. But if the consensus is to have Mormonism separate, then ok, but I don't think it makes much sense to have it in the Middle Eastern section as it was founded in the United States and is now spread over most of the world. In fact I don't particularly like classifying all the religions by where they started, but thats another matter. Basically I think Mormonism should be recognized under Christianity, though as a subsection so that its clear that most Christians don't use the Mormon scriptures. Any other thoughts? Since the edit was made by an anon, I'll probably make the change back to how it was if there aren't any objections in a week or so. thanks - Biggins 16:47, 22 Aug 2004 (UTC)

There is NO reason why Mormons shouldn't be under Christianity. I mean, there are those who say Mormons aren't Christian, but those are the same people who say that Catholics and Jehovah's Witnesses aren't Christian. We're not here to make political statements. Tell me why Mormonism is an American religion? While Joseph Smith started The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Mormons don't consider that the start of their religion. While the Book of Mormon is set in "the Americas," Mormons also believe in the Bible. While the Headquarters is currently in the US, there are more members outside the US than in. So why call it an American church? They're a Christian religion, and the fourth largest church in the US, so they shouldn't have to defend themselves. And while you're free to put The Book of Mormon in a subcategory, you'd also have to put all the other non-standard books in the same subcategory. We all agree on the Old Testament and the New Testament, but none of the others. The Apocrypha is almost exclusive Catholic; not many clergy have seen a Book of Common Prayer; and we all have different hymns. My point is, we probably shouldn't have a subset; just put the Book of Mormon under Christianity. Thanks. - mrcolj 21:45, 15 Apr 2005

Nope. Mormonism should be under a separate heading. It is its own independent religion. No mainstream Christian denominations recognize it as Christian, and Mormons do not recognize other Christian denominations as valid. I'd like to see some Mormons comment on whether or not they would want to be classed as having the same religion as Baptists, Catholics, and Anglicans etc. I bet they would not. It is quite simple - there is common consensus among mainstream Christian denominations that Anglicans, Baptists, Catholics etc. are Christian denominations, albeit with some important differences, but that Mormonism is a separate religion. Likewise, there is common consensus by Mormons that Mormonism is the true religion (perhaps they would say the "true form of Christianity") and that the others - Anglicans, Baptists, Catholics etc. - have got it so wrong that they are an entirely separate religion. Thus, Mormonism should be under its own major heading. As for the writer above saying that the "Apocrypha is almost exclusive Catholic" - this isn't true. The Apocrypha is considered part of the Bible in the Catholic and the Eastern Orthodox churches; in the Protestant churches it is not considered to be part of the Bible, but that does not mean it is not considered an important religious Christian document. And, with regards to the Book of Common Prayer - this is regarded as an aid to worship in the Anglican church; other denominations don't use it (and many Anglican congregations don't use it either), but so what, they still recognize it for what it is - a text that is used as an aid to worship. No-one considers it to be a sacred text that is God breathed... I've moved Mormonism to its own heading, which I think is the most reasonable thing to. If there consensus among other Christian denominations and among Mormons, that Mormonism is a Christian denomination, then I agree it should go under the Christian denominations section but until there is that clear consensus, I think it should remain on its own... Finally, in Islam, Jesus Christ is recognized as a great prophet - does that make Islam a Christian denomination? -- 04:19, 31 December 2005 (UTC)

Obviously Islam is not Christian even though they accept Jesus Christ as a great prophet (no Muslim would claim to be Christian). This discussion seems a bit silly. After reviewing many statements by leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I believe that the Mormons are a Christian denomination. I am a bit confused as to why none of these reviewers has done any research. Here is a statement by the leader of the Mormon Church, President Gordon B. Hinckley in response to this very question: [response]. I am moving Mormonism back under the Christian faith section. Mormons consider themselves Christian, but to not believe in the validity of other religions. This is not uncommon among religions of the world. Although other religions may accept the validity of certain rites in other religions (e.g. baptism), they do not accept everything. If they did, there would not be separate religions and there would no longer be any doctrinal disagreement. Let's do some real research before writing articles so that Wikipedia actually remains credible. Ricardo630 01:09, 18 March 2006 (UTC)Ricardo630

LDS Scripture clearly shows that Joseph Smith believed all Christian denominations to be wrong, and that he should not join any group currently identified as Christian (Joseph Smith, History, chapter 1, verses 18-20). The Book of Mormon says that the devil is the founder of the Christian churches that exist today (1 Nephi 13:6) Mormonism considers itself to be the only true Christian church. No Christian denomination that I know of has recognised them as Christian. On this basis, I think it is fair to talk of it as a separate religion. -- BenStevenson 01:51, 13 April 2006 (UTC)

Eating sacred-texts.com[edit]

Is there any reason why we shouldn't copy everything from The Internet Sacred Text Archive? Apparently it's all in the public domain. —Ashley Y 03:15, 18 Sep 2004 (UTC)

The same question applies to documents at the Christian Classics Ethereal Library. Perhaps just having the link to that site is enough. Note also that many of their documents are in an XML format (ThML) and are converted to HTML with the aid of an XSL or a Perl script. Has there been any discussion of file formats for documents here? — HenryHartley 16:07, 28 Sep 2004 (UTC)

Alphabetical order[edit]

It seems to me this whole list should simply be in alphabetical order. Not only is the current list cumbersome and unclear, the "geographical" listing is often misleading and in some cases perhaps completely wrong. Anything besides alphabetical is likely to lead to disagreements. Dovi 08:24, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Do you mean classify religions by alphabetical order ? Or documents ? Yann 09:12, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)
Religions. But you are right - another list for documents would be useful too.Dovi 11:12, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)
I agree with Dovi. Only a person who knows about all the religions will find a geographical breakdown any help at all. People who don't know much about where the religion is predominantly practiced might find the current method of organization confusing. Organizing the religions alphabetically would greatly improve that page, I believe. Zhaladshar 14:56, 3 Jun 2005 (UTC)

Eliminate Pseudo-Geographical Categorization[edit]

Does not make sense to classify based on purported "origin". In any case, today the practice of major "religions" is global.

  • Done. Yann 09:17, 1 August 2005 (UTC)

Translations in the Scheme[edit]

Need a good way to manage the growing list of translations for the source texts. Especially for the Christianity section, where the list of the "Lord's Prayer" is growing. Since it all refers to the same source material, need a good way to handle this in the context of the multi-lingual feature of the Wiki as a whole...

External Links / Baha'i[edit]

Is there a reason the external Baha'i links were deleted? What's the policy here. The editor said "no internal texts" is that why external links to Mormon resources are tolerated and the Baha'i external links were deleted? Just trying to figure out the policy, which I can't find spelled out anywhere. Rboatright 20:19, 30 September 2005 (UTC)

Um, which links were deleted? I've added a section for internal documents and started with Kitab-i-Aqdas. I'll re-add any relevant external links within internal stubs until they can be properly imported. They are linked from the equivalent en.wikipedia.org articles in any case, and the stubs will also reference the 'pedia articles. -- Christian Edward Gruber 06:44, 18 January 2006 (UTC)

"Apocrypha" is this the correct word to use[edit]

I wish to refer the community to the wikipedia article on Deuterocanonical Books[1] for a discussion of the proper use of the term apocrypha. Also see the article on Apocrypha[2]. The author of the first article notes that the "Manual for the Society of Biblical Literature recommends the use of the term deuterocanonical literature instead of Apocrypha in academic writing".

Dave R-- 05:14, 6 November 2005 (UTC)

  • Without objection the pages have been edited --Droll 23:20, 11 November 2005 (UTC)

Discussions on the English Wikipedia[edit]

Wikisource regulars might be interested in the following discussions on the English Wikipedia where editors are advocating the moving of Bible texts to Wikisource.

Thryduulf 13:36, 16 January 2006 (UTC)

"Contemporary" heading[edit]

I've removed the "Contemporary" heading and moved its sub-headings into the main list. "Contemporary" both dates the page and implies that there is some fundamental difference between a 50 year old faith (Wicca) and a 90 year old faith (Baha'i).

In the process I renamed "Paganism" to "Wicca." I believe all the documents listed here are specifically Wiccan. If more Neopagan documents are added, a "Neopagan" heading may be appropriate to group them. "Pagan" is generally a misnomer for modern documents.


Shouldn't this be cut? Since it's got nothing under it and this isn't anything more than a reference page, it doesn't seem to serve any purpose. Or put something under it if we've got anything, that'd be good.

Gnostic creeds moved to Wica[edit]

These have far more in common than with Christianity. 18th June 2006

Why not call them Pseudo-Christian or Ancient cults or something. That would seem to be more fitting. Bounton 13:56, 11 September 2006 (UTC)

Deuterocanonical books[edit]

for some reason this was linking to an off shoot of the KJV bible. i came across this subject whilst browsing wiki and was surprised not to find the text here, rather disappointing...anyway i made a list based off of the wikipedia article. unlike the majority of you fellows, i have no religious persuasion, so if you have a problem with the list take it up on wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deuterocanonical#New_Testament --AlexOvShaolin 00:46, 4 November 2006 (UTC)

okay somebody removed the page. i cant understand the thought process of someone who thinks absolutely no information is better than a list. --AlexOvShaolin 03:24, 8 November 2006 (UTC)

Roman Catholicism[edit]

Is there is copyright issue with the Encyclicals issued by the Popes or Bulls as well? I do not know the copyright issue for Vatican City authors. Also the Doctors of the Church and their writings as well? Wabbit98 12:37pm PST 15 June 2007.

Not sure[edit]

Added a subcat to Dharma, but not sure is suitable. ≈ jossi ≈ t@ 21:07, 15 June 2007 (UTC)

External Links / Thelema[edit]

I'm pretty sure the OTO documents are copywritten, but don't feel like removing the link without being sure. 05:43:57 24 Aug 2007 (UTC)

"Discordian" elephant?[edit]

Regarding "Five Blind Men and an Elephant", I see nothing about Discordianism mentioned in Wikipedia articles on Discordianism, John Godfrey Saxe (the poem's author), or the poem itself; why was this poem so categorized here? B7T 02:26, 19 November 2007 (UTC)

There is some discussion on the talk page that might be of interest: [[3]]. John Vandenberg 03:17, 19 November 2007 (UTC)