Ordination - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Religion

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 29 pages of information about Ordination.
This section contains 8,614 words
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Ordination in Ancient and Traditional Societies

Numerous ancient and traditional societies have beliefs and practices according to which they set apart certain persons as religious leaders, endowing them with special authority and power for the performance of essential religious services, such as serving the gods and spirits, sacrificing, communicating with spiritual powers, warding off evil powers, healing, and the like. Among the great diversity of roles dealing with spiritual power, some basic types are priests, shamans, and medicine men or women.

The term priest generally designates a person ordained with authority to practice the cult of certain divinities or spirits. Since these spiritual powers are believed to direct and influence human existence, they must be worshiped, prayed to, consulted, influenced by sacrifices, and the like, for the continuing welfare of the human community. The priesthood may be hereditary, or priests may be called or chosen by the divinity. After...

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This section contains 8,614 words
(approx. 29 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Ordination Encyclopedia Article
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Encyclopedia of Religion
Ordination from Encyclopedia of Religion. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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