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World Religion
Religion and Art



Religion and Art
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 9 to 12
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   9.31

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    blue-skinned, elephant-headed, gold-plated, hinduism, panoply, portraitist, refectory, retinue, unequalled, stupas, entrancing, luminous, nirvana, portrayal, preliminary, heavenly
     content words:    Powerful Zeus, Eightfold Path, Reclining Buddha, Virgin Mary, Last Supper, Santa Maria, Sistine Chapel, His Virgins, Whereas Christians, Taj Mahal


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Religion and Art
By Colleen Messina
  

1     Religious faith by nature is invisible. No one can touch it or see it. However, throughout the ages people have created beautiful objects to express their beliefs and honor their religion. Painting, architecture, and sculpture have been inspired by faith and in the name of someone's concept of god.
 
2     The ancient Greeks believed that nature was sacred and that a retinue of feisty gods and goddesses controlled its forces. Powerful Zeus with thunderbolt in hand ruled over all of them. Greek myths and adventures make modern day soap operas seem tame. The Greeks feared and honored their heavenly panoply. They created works of art to appease and satisfy their gods.
 
3     One such monument is the beautiful Parthenon. The Parthenon was built on the highest point in Athens which was called the Acropolis. An enormous gold and ivory statue of Athena stood inside. The Greeks were master sculptors, but unfortunately, many statues have been destroyed. The Greeks also excelled in poetry and drama.
 
4     Other religions have also expressed their devotion by building statues and monuments. Huge statues of the Buddha remind Asians of the Buddha's Eightfold Path. After his death, the Buddha's body was cremated. His followers received portions of the ashes. They placed these relics in great mounds called stupas. Later, temples were built on those sites. Large statues of the Buddha were placed in these temples.

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