Difference Between Mythology and Religion

Main Difference – Mythology vs Religion

Mythology refers to a collection of myths, especially one belonging to a particular religious or cultural tradition. Religion is a specific system of belief and/or worship, often involving a code of ethics and philosophy. Although mythology and religion are two different concepts, some of their aspects tend to overlap. The main similarity between mythology and religion is their concern with the supernatural. However, mythology is considered to be only one aspect of religion. Religion consists of other aspects such as morality, theology, ritual, and mystical experience. The main difference between mythology and religion is that mythological stories are considered to be fiction whereas religious stories are considered to be true.Difference Between Mythology and Religion - infographic

What is Mythology

Mythology refers to a collection of myths, especially one belonging to a particular religious or cultural tradition. Myths are traditional stories that are rooted in folk beliefs or religions; they are usually concerned with the early history of a group of people or explain a natural or social phenomenon using supernatural events or beings. For example, there are several stories about the creation of the world in different cultures. In Greek mythology, the creation of the world is explained by the story of chaos and in Christianity, it is explained by the story of Eve and Adam. The main characteristic of myths is that they are believed to be fiction.

Mythology is a major component of any culture. Supernatural beings such as deities, demigods, demons, etc. also play a prominent part in mythology. There are many theories about mythology; some theories claim that myths are distorted accounts of real events while some state that they began as allegories. Despite their origins myths have been used throughout the history to explain the unexplainable.

As mentioned in the introduction, mythology is an important aspect of religion. Most of the religion stories have a strong root in mythology although the followers of that particular aspect refuse to believe it.

Difference Between Mythology and Religion

What is Religion

Religion is a specific system of belief and/or worship, often involving a code of ethics and philosophy. It usually consists of a set of morals, ethics, beliefs, and rituals that guide people. As mentioned above religion consists of several components such as morality, theology, ritual, and mythology. Religion is also often defined as a belief in god(s) or the belief in and worship of divinity; however, not all religions believe in gods. Some of the main theist religions in the world are Christianity, Islam, and Hinduism.

Religion is also an established organization; here is a hierarchy of priests who act as the guardians of the religion. The main characteristic of religion is that followers of that particular religion believe that religion to be true; they believe in all the religious stories, teachings, practices, the method of worship and prayer. However, the stories can be viewed as myths by those who do not believe that story. For example, the story of Rama and Seetha is considered as a religious story by Hindus, but a Christian may see it as a part of mythology. Similarly, the story of Adam and Eve can be viewed as a myth by non-Christians.

Main Difference - Mythology vs Religion

Difference Between Mythology and Religion

Definition

Mythology refers to a collection of myths, especially one belonging to a particular religious or cultural tradition.

Religion is a specific system of belief and/or worship, often involving a code of ethics and philosophy.

Truth

Mythology is considered to be fiction.

Religion is considered to true.

Interdependence

Mythology is one aspect of religion.

Religion consists of many aspects such as theology, morals, and mythology.

Components

Mythology only consists of stories.

Religion consists of a set of morals, ethics, beliefs, rituals, etc.

Image Courtesy:

“Religious syms.” By User:Rursus – File:Religious syms.png by Manop (Public Domain) via

“Guercino 001.” By Guercino – The Yorck Project: 10.000 Meisterwerke der Malerei. DVD-ROM, 2002. ISBN 3936122202. Distributed by DIRECTMEDIA Publishing GmbH. (Public Domain) via

About the Author: Hasa

Hasa has a BA degree in English, French and Translation studies. She is currently reading for a Masters degree in English. Her areas of interests include literature, language, linguistics and also food.


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