Audio Glossary: M

A school attached to a masjid (mosque) where children are taught Arabic, the Qur'an and aspects of Muslim life.
Magen David
Literally 'the Shield of David', the representation of two interlaced equilateral triangles forming a six-pointed star, a symbol of Judaism.
Mahabharata (The great epic of the Bharatas)
A Hindu poem, the longest epic poem in the world‚ which tells of the war between two clans, the Kauravas and the Pandavas. The central and best known part of the epic is the discourse delivered by Krishna to the hero Arjuna known as the Bhagavadgita.
Makkah / Mecca
Alternative spelling (preferred by Muslims) of city in Saudi Arabia often spelt Mecca; the birthplace of the prophet Muhammad.
Literally 'great hero', a title applied to the founder of the Jain tradition Vardhamana (circa 599 to 467 BCE).
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('Large Vehicle'). One of the major schools of Buddhism, a development of thought and practice that arose from the 1st century CE onwards.
Hindu name for God (the Destroyer).
Rabbi Moshe Ben Maimon (or Moses Maimonides 1135 -1204). The great Jewish philosopher, codifier of Jewish law and physician.
Literally 'abiding place'‚ or 'dwelling'; the common word among Hindus for what in English is often referred to as a Hindu temple. A mandir is the sanctuary of one or more deities.
In Hinduism, Buddhism and Sikhism a word, phrase or verse which is spoken or chanted repetitiously as a prayer or aid to meditation.
In Christianity, the mother of Jesus. Described since the 4th century as the Mother of God.
Literally a place of prostration‚ Arabic word for mosque.
In Hinduism,and Sikhism a belief that our normal perceptions of the world are illusions.
City in Saudi Arabia to which the Prophet Muhammad and his companions fled from persecution in Makkah.
Various techniques of stilling or focussing the mind in order to enter altered states of consciousness or union with a deity or ultimate spiritual reality.
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mela (jormela)
A Sikh festival which is not a Gurpurb.
The seven-branched lamp that is the universal symbol of Judaism, after one that existed in the Temple.
Grew out of the 18th century Evangelical Revival led by Anglican priests John Wesley and George Whitefield and became a separate denomination. Methodism is most numerous in the USA. Worship combines formal and informal elements, and there is a strong emphasis on social action.
Small parchment scroll in a case fixed to the right hand door post of doors to Jewish homes and every room in a Jewish home except the bathroom and toilet.
A Jewish ritual bath.
Guru Hargobind's two swords. Hargobind became Guru after the murder of Guru Arjan Dev by the Mogul emperor Jehangir. When presented with the woolen cord (seli) that was the mark of Guruship, he refused, saying that the seli suited a time of peace, but that this being a time of war he would instead wear two swords. The sword Miri, worn on his left side, was the sign of his worldly leadership; Piri, worn on the right, was the sign of his spiritual leadership.
From a Latin word meaning 'to send'. A group of persons sent by a church to evangelise.
mitzvah; pl. mitzvot
A rule in the Torah which also carries the sense of a good deed and an honour. There are 613 mitzvoh in the Torah.
In Hinduism the goal of existence, which is liberation from the round of rebirths (i.e. samsara).
Montefiore (Sir Moses 1784-1885)
A British Jewish communal leader and philanthropist.
A member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, a religious movement founded by the visionary Joseph Smith in the USA in the 19th Century. The movement's headquarters is in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Biblical figure regarded by Jews as the greatest of the prophets.
Common English term for the Masjid (Islamic place of communal worship.).
Muhammad (pbuh)
(570 to 632 CE) regarded by Muslims as the 'seal of the prophets' i.e. the final Messenger of God; Muslims hold that the Holy Qur'an was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad, who was himself illiterate.
In Shi'a Islam (of the Usali school) the highest religious authorities; every individual believer must adhere to the religious pronouncements of a Mujtahid by whom the khums tax is collected.
Mul Mantar
The opening hymn of the Guru Granth Sahib and the basic statement of Sikh belief about God, it begins with the assertion, "There is only one God, Truth is His name."
Literally 'material form'. Representation of a Hindu deity. A murti is a living image of a deity, which is fashioned according to traditional canons of form and beauty, as well as posture.
Muslim Aid
A Muslim charitable organisation for the relief of poverty and for development work.
In religious studies usage, a story that may or may not be historically based and which has importance in a religious tradition.
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