Definition of religion in English:



  • 1The belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods.

    ‘ideas about the relationship between science and religion’
    • ‘While it's true that religion is a deeply personal issue, entertainment is not.’
    • ‘The freedom to manifest religion or belief in worship, observance, practice and teaching encompasses a broad range of acts.’
    • ‘He understood the ideological power of religion as well as its miraculous strength.’
    • ‘Bonaparte, however, had never made the mistake of underestimating either the power of religion or the resilience of the Church.’
    • ‘Since when has religion and one's personal spiritual belief become the focal point of a candidacy?’
    • ‘Later chapters return to the relationship among religion, politics and power.’
    • ‘On the other, they say religion has little power to bring peace and harmony to the world.’
    • ‘Many people today are saying how organised religion does nothing for society, and it helps no one.’
    • ‘I am a person for whom religion has never been important in my life, and I am really scared of the power of religion now.’
    • ‘Organised religion is based on far more abstract concepts.’
    • ‘I feel that religion or religious beliefs should not be used as an argument against the rights given to private people.’
    • ‘It is best known, of course, for its extreme views on religion and morality and personal conduct.’
    • ‘But, as Karl Marx put it, religion is also the opiate of the people.’
    • ‘Instead of rewriting history and using religion as a power tool, he would rather that politicians embrace technology.’
    • ‘He finds no use for organized religion in the life and conduct of intelligent men.’
    • ‘If people believe in religion it means they don't believe in science.’
    • ‘The secularization debate is primarily concerned with the role or power of religion and churches in society.’
    • ‘Have westernised intellectuals underestimated the power of religion?’
    • ‘On her death bed, his mother confided that she finally understood the power of religion in his life.’
    • ‘We had been schooled to dismiss them as being objects of religion, ritual and superstition.’
    faith, belief, divinity, worship, creed, teaching, doctrine, theology
    sect, cult, religious group, faith community, church, denomination, body, following, persuasion, affiliation
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    1. 1.1A particular system of faith and worship.
      ‘the world's great religions’
      • ‘The official state religion is Roman Catholicism, but Evangelical Protestant movements are making converts among traditional Catholic believers.’
      • ‘Notice that they converted to Lutheranism, although Catholicism was the majority religion in Vienna and in Austria.’
      • ‘Wicca is a nature religion based upon beliefs and rites believed to be rooted in ancient practices.’
      • ‘Yet the power of our civic religion lies not in any sanctions it imposes but in the moral sensibility it nurtures.’
      • ‘Buddhism is the majority religion there, and a particularly militant strain predominates.’
      • ‘Many refused full equality to adherents of minority religions until well into the century.’
      • ‘Is the problem that Judaism is a religion as well as an ethnicity?’
      • ‘And we did not practice Buddhist or Shinto religions.’
      • ‘Yet Wicca is a religion, you can't invent it as you go along.’
      • ‘After having done the study I came to realize that Buddhism is a family religion.’
      • ‘Secularism does not reject religion but attempts to bar any single religion from gaining political control.’
      • ‘Church and state are separate today, but Catholicism is the religion of the great majority.’
      • ‘They don't see the truth because they come here to impose their religion's power.’
      • ‘Christianity is a liberating religion, and forgiveness of sins is a liberating experience.’
      • ‘Hinduism is a complex religion, and there are many paths in it.’
      • ‘Regardless of your religion or personal beliefs, I will always stand against censorship.’
      • ‘Those who believe in pluralism think that every religion has spiritual power.’
      • ‘No organized religion preaches murder and hatred of innocent people.’
      • ‘Christianity is the religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus Christ.’
      • ‘The roots of Japanese mythology are in the Shinto religion, in Taoism and in Zen Buddhism alike.’
      faith, religious persuasion, religious conviction, religious group, faith community, church
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    2. 1.2A pursuit or interest to which someone ascribes supreme importance.
      ‘consumerism is the new religion’
      • ‘This brings up another point: hockey in the BCHL ceases to be a religion and becomes secondary to education.’
      • ‘The consequent pursuit of thinness had become a new religion, she said, and she showed a range of advertisements to support her claims.’
      • ‘It's the backdrop because football is considered a religion worldwide and the most viewed game.’
      • ‘We've been told time and again that cricket is a religion in India.’
      • ‘In this city where rugby is a religion, there is the feeling that Moses has led them to the mountaintop.’
      • ‘It serves only one master - corporate greed - that is their religion and their power.’
      • ‘The pursuit of eating raw food has become a religion of the nuttier kind.’
      • ‘Online marketers realize that return on investment is the religion they need to follow.’


  • get religion

    • informal Be converted to religious belief and practices.

      • ‘When he got religion, it was framed as a rejection of the rest of his career, and he had to backpedal or move on (depending on how you look at it), before he had a chance to speak to his wider audience again.’
      • ‘Billboards used to ask us to get religion and go to ‘the church of [our] choice.’’
      • ‘He knew she'd got religion because she'd said as much, but whatever it was, he hadn't wanted any part of it for himself.’
      • ‘Many people in rehab, and in defeat, get religion.’
      • ‘I'm hardly an authority on saints, or irony, but am I right in thinking that, before he got religion, St. Andrew was a Middle Eastern fisherman?’
      • ‘Others got religion or turned to booze as a way of salving their incurable ache for space.’
      • ‘To her, though, it will always be the place where she got religion.’
      • ‘He's a fellah I was at school with who was a gardener, but he got religion so keep away from him.’
      • ‘Three lives collide after a car crash: transplant patient/mathematician Sean Penn, grieving mother Naomi Watts and Benicio del Toro as an ex-con who got religion.’
      • ‘They got religion, and they're going crazy and that's great.’


Middle English (originally in the sense life under monastic vows): from Old French, or from Latin religio(n-) obligation, bond, reverence perhaps based on Latin religare to bind.