Paganism (from Latin paganus,
meaning "a country dweller" or "civilian") is a blanket term which
has come to connote a broad set of western spiritual or religious
beliefs and practices of natural or polytheistic religions, as
opposed to the Abrahamic monotheistic religions. "Pagan" is the
usual translation of the Islamic term mushrik, which refers to 'one
who worships something other than God'. Ethnologists do not use the
term for these beliefs, which are not necessarily compatible with
each other: more useful categories are shamanism, polytheism or
animism. Often, the term has pejorative connotations, comparable to
heathen, infidel and kafir (كافر) in Islam.
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