What is our purpose? Why am I here? What created the universe? These burning questions have puzzled humanity since the dawn of our existence, and it’s no wonder that, thousands of years later, we still quest for these answers, both on an individual level and with one another. We thirst for unknown knowledge and unlocking the great mysteries of the universe. So, it’s no surprise that new belief systems will pop up, providing new answers to age old questions. Here are some of the most interesting emerging religions that are being embraced around the world. Perhaps, you’ll even find one that connects you!
As one of the world’s oldest religions, Hinduism is one of the most interesting for its diverse systems of thought and the concept of karma. In Hinduism, karma refers to the notion that the sum of one person’s action in their current and previous lives will dictate their fate in future lives. Gurus, or leaders, are central figures of Hinduism, acting as teachers who will guide students into a path of spiritual enlightenment.
Amma, born as Mata Amritanandamayi, is a Hindu leader and is also known as the Hugging Saint. Her mission is to comfort the entire world by extending the love she has through outward physical actions. She does so through her worldwide tours where she embraces every single one of her audience members.
From a young age, Amma encountered intense poverty and suffering in her community. While Amma believed in the Hinduism teaching that individual suffering is caused by one’s own karma, she rejected the notion that this justified the inaction from others to improve the situations of the suffering individuals. Instead, the root teaching of Amma is that love is expressed through compassion for oneself and others, and not judging others for their situations in life.
Happy Science is an emerging religion from Japan that was founded by Ryuho Okawa in 1986. A combination of Buddhism and Christianity, followers of this faith believe in the God of the Earth, who is named El Cantare.
The underlying philosophies of Happy Science are the Fourfold Path and the Exploration of the Right Mind. The Fourfold Path is a set of guidelines to achieve happiness that transcends the material world, focusing on embracing love, the pursuit of wisdom, deep self-reflection, and positive progress. The Exploration of the Right Mind is based upon the achievement of upward spiritual growth, where the spirit world communicates with us, providing guidance and enlightenment while living in our current world.
Caodaism is an emerging religion from Vietnam founded by Ngô Văn Chiêu in 1926 after he received a vision from the Divine Eye. Caodaism (or Cao Đài) comes from the phrase Đại Đạo Tam Kỳ Phổ Độ, which translates to “The Third Great Universal Religious Amnesty.” This third amnesty is believed by to be the unification of God and humanity, establishing a new faith for the salvation of all living beings before the destruction of the universe. The mission of Cao Dai priests is to guide humanity into the path of the Third Amnesty to bring all of humanity together as a universal family to achieve peace.
The core principle of Caodaism is that all religions are one and the same, and that they consist of these five tenets:
- A moral perspective – for an individual to be responsible for their duties towards themselves, their family, their society, and universe.
- A philosophical perspective – for individuals to renounce material items to achieve spiritual tranquility of the soul.
- A reverend perspective – for individuals to prescribe the adoration of God, Divine Beings, and ancestors.
- A spiritual perspective – for all individuals to live in harmony with other religions to ensure the survival beyond the physical world.
- An initiation perspective – for worthy adherents to be able to reach happiness.
Prince Phillip Movement
On the tiny island of Vanautu, east of Australia, a unique religious movement is followed by the Kastom people, called the Prince Philip Movement. The main belief is that Prince Phillip is their God. For most of Vanautu’s history, the Katom people believed that the son of the Earth spirit had left their island to marry a powerful woman across the sea and that the son would one day return to the island.
During Queen Elizabeth II’s visit to Polynesia in 1974, the Kastom natives observed how much respect and reverence was given to the royals, and this led to their belief that Prince Philip was the Earth spirit they were waiting for. Since the visit, the royal family has had several interactions with the tribe, offering them gifts and even inviting them to Britain.
Followers of the Prince Philip Movement celebrate his birthday on June 10th each year with dancing and singing. When Prince Philip passed away in April of 2021, the village people spent several weeks mourning him. This included ritualistic dancing, formal procession, and spoken tributes dedicated to the late Prince Philip.
Founded in France in the 1970’s by Claude Vorilhon, Raëlism (or Raël), is fascinating addition to emerging religions is founded on the belief that an extraterrestrial species named “Elohim” exists here on Earth. The Elohim are anti-pacifists who do not wear clothes and are permitted to engage in acts of free love with each other, which is what the primary teachings of Raël are based on. It is a faith that is rooted primarily in antiwar, topless rights, and sexual self-determination. Occasionally, Raël will be involved in advocating for social issues that they strongly believe in that aligns with the primary teachings of the religion.
Our quest for purpose is uniquely our own, but we can find meaning from the teachings of others, especially emerging religions. When we welcome new ideas and beliefs, we leave so much room for personal growth and spiritual development. Self-discovery is a path that, if you’re brave enough to take, can have profound, life-changing impact on us. We just have to be ready to listen to what these philosophies and belief systems want to share with us. By embracing love and compassion, we can glean remarkable insights from others in our community and allow for us to grow into the best versions of ourselves.
Meet Paul Wagner
Paul Wagner is an Intuitive Life & Business Coach, clairvoyant reader, and a five-time EMMY Award-winning writer. He created “THE PERSONALITY CARDS,” a powerful Oracle-Tarot deck that’s helpful in life, love, and relationships. Paul studied with Lakota elders in the Pecos Wilderness, who nurtured his empathic abilities and taught him the sacred rituals. He has lived at ashrams with enlightened masters, including Amma, the Hugging Saint, for whom he’s delivered keynotes at Her worldwide events.
Paul tours the world lecturing on spiritual liberation. He lovingly offers intuitive readings, inspirational coaching, and illuminating courses to help others with self-discovery, decision-making, healing, and forgiveness. Book a session with Paul: HERE