Religion is something unique to a man. It makes us different from any other animals. Nowadays, religion has a great impact on man’s life. It one of the major factors why man still manage to survive in this cruel and unfair life. It helps man to keep holding on especially in times of down. It is something man can lean on. But those religions we are affiliated today are not the exact same religion in the early times. Even the simplest religion has a very complex history indeed. Religions have developed over thousands of years ago due to its adaptation to environmental changes such as social and ecological (Hopfe and Woodcraft, p. 15)
Although archaeologists and anthropologists have found remains and of ancient people and society, still, evidences for early religions were hard to interpret. Writings were very few because they don’t actually write in their times. They preferred vocal communication. Sad to say but these gave us limited knowledge of early religions. However, their arts and symbols somehow gave little information about their religion. There was also transmission of myths from one generation to another. Stories about gods’ relationship with man are common to every religion.
These stories are myths telling the truth about the religion. It helps man visualize abstract concepts (Hopfe and Woodcraft, p. 25). Like every other religion today, early religion also has initiation. After proper training, a man or woman will be initiated which serve as the end of their social cohesion and individual fulfillment (Ellwood and McGraw, p. 31. ). Shamans have a big role in spirituality of early religion. They are believed to have special powers like healing and confronting gods. Ceremonies and rituals that went with hunting and gathering were also present (Ellwood and McGraw, p. 49).
Early religion, even somehow have a lot of difference with today’s religion, have shaped the lives of early people. Just like today, religion is a part of their everyday lives. Whatever the differences they may have, religion still have one good reason for existence—guidance to mankind. References: Ellwood, Robert S. and McGraw, Barbara A. Many Peoples, Many Faiths: Women and Men in the World Religions, Seventh Edition. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall. 2002 Hopfe, Lewis M. and Woodcraft, Mark R. Religions of the World, Eighth Edition. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice Hall. 2001