In Armenism, God is the focal point of Armenists’ daily life and spiritual training. The importance of God in Armenism is explained by the Armenists believe that God known in Armenian as Ararich - meaning the Creator - has created the world and chose Ararat as His earthly home.
In particular, Armenists believe that the first humans have originated on the Mt. Ararat and were given shelter on its plains. Later on, by the grace of the God and humans’ choice to explore the world, first human couple known in Armenian as Mart and Kin-meaning man and woman came down to earth from the Mt. Ararat and established their earthly residence at the foot of the mountain, on the river bank of Araxes, in the area of historical Armenia known as Naxijevan, meaning “the first settlement” or “the first shelter”.
Armenism believes that God is good and loving, caring and compassionate, forgiving and helpful, God is the teacher and the guide, God is the parent and we are His children, every one of us. Thus, the world and all creations made by God know no evil and are holly, all the evil may come from humans, but never from the creations of God. Even, when an animal eats another animal, it doesn't commit evil, but operates according to its natural functions for survival.
According to Armenism, humans are not animals even though human may have a lot in common with animals. The commonality with animals just shows that all the creation came from the one, single source, God the creator. In Armenism, humans are the representatives of God on Earth, Earth is the Garden created by God, and humans are its gardeners, the shepherds of the God's creations.
In Armenism life is a precious gift and a responsibility for one to know and cherish. Every birth is a celebration and a cause for happiness.
Armenism believes that the first world civilization have began in Armenia and as such was blessed by God to become the first school of the world’s scholarship, where all the secrets of the heavens and earth were known and kept. As such, Armenists believe that Armenia once again is destined to become the world’s source of light and knowledge, divine inspirations and creativity, the source of worldly knowledge and skills, first conveyed to the patriarchs of the mankind, Mart and Kin, and to their descendants.
Armenism and Other Religions
Armenism is an ethnocentric ideology with religious and political aspirations. Armenism otherwise could be described as a religious nationalism. Armenism is based upon its nine main principles deeply rooted in the creative and spiritual nature of Armenian psyche and its fascination with knowledge and wisdom. Just like many other ethnocentric religions, Armenism is peculiar and unique in its relevance to its carrier – the Armenians and Armenia. Despite being fundamentally Armenian by its origin, Armenism under special circumstances can be extended to incorporate other cultures of similar traditions and of common ancestry.
Armenism believes that the humanity had first originated on the slops of Mt. Ararat and surrounding land, and it is there, in the Armenian Highland humans had first began to acknowledged the existence of God, His role in the lives of humanity and the purpose of their own being. Armenism believes that this knowledge of divine and the human sense for its purpose had inspired Armenians to create the first world civilization, the kingdom of Aratta also known as Ararat, Arartun and Urartu around 6000-5000 before common era, thus setting forth the precedent for the emergence of other civilizations around the world. Arartun in Armenian means the Home of the Creator, and as such Armenism considers the entire territory of historic Armenia as the Holy Land.
Armenism is different from other religions by the following rituals and practices:
-Armenists pray every day at the sunrise and every day before the dawn facing toward the Mt. Ararat.
-Armenists follow the pre-Christian Armenian calendar that was used before the advent of Christianity to celebrate their Armenian holy days and New Year, known in Armenian as Navasard.
-Armenists do not believe in the existence of hell, but do believe that those who don’t follow the divine Law set forth by God as they were given to Armenian forefather Hyek Nahapet will vanish into a non-existence and insignificance after their physical death, while who do follow the Law of God will become one with God and overcome their physical death.
-Armenists believes that all good and all evil is the work of men and is not related to anything or anyone beyond the world of our daily experiences. Armenists believe that the purpose of the mankind is immortality and transcendence to become one with God, as such, Armenists believe that the purpose of nations is to lead the rest of the humanity toward immortality, toward becoming one with God.
The Armenist understanding of God is very different from that of other religions. More specifically, their understanding differs in the following aspects:
- In Middle Eastern (Judaism, Christianity and Islam) and many other religions god is seen physically as similar to humans. It is said that the humans were created in the shape of god. Accordingly, god is often portrayed as an old man with white beard flying over the clouds.
Unlike that stereotype, Armenism sees God in the plentitude and diversity of physical forms. Physically God is everywhere: in the skies, on earth, in a tree, in an ant. The world consist of God’s physical energy, also called “ar”. God may take any shape and form, including human. But the human is not the main shape of God.
- The Middle Eastern religions also see god as the ultimate ruler, the dictator, whose will is a rule that everybody should obey. No one has a right to disobey god’s will because this will lead to punishment by god, because god is also the judge of everything and everyone. Men are considered inferior and sinful and should fear god.
For Armenism, God is neither a dictator, not the judge. He is our friend and we do not need to fear Him. God is not imposing His will upon men, but only advises us on how to live our lives better and easier. God does not punish either. He has set rules for everybody and everything. These rules are embodied in the Law of God. And, unlike in other religions, humans have a choice. We may choose to follow God’s advice, i.e., God’s Law, and the better off and victorious, or we may choose to disregard the Law and play blind and be at our own risk. In this case, God will not punish us, but we will punish ourselves by making mistakes and getting into traps and hardships. But in any case the freedom of choice is always with us.
- In other religions men are made of clay, ashes or dirt. Most religions are humiliating man by considering him a slave or animal full of primitive instincts and sins. The Middle Eastern religions in particular went too far in humiliating man’s dignity and self esteem.
Armenism considers men divine beings. This comes from the fact that all man bear a little piece of God’s holy soul inside, the one that is given by God to every conscious being at birth. Given the fact that physically men consist of God’s ar and spiritually – of God’s arev (soul), men are considered as children of God. In this regard, Armenism is the only religion on the planet earth that praises and admires the human nature and preaches a belief that is encouraging humans to be better sons and daughters of God.