Welcome to the Department of Religion at UH Mānoa

Religion is one of the most pervasive and powerful realms of human experience. Our programs are designed to provide students with a broad knowledge of the world’s religious traditions and the skills necessary for analyzing and understanding their various dimensions. Students from our department learn to interpret religions as systems of meaning and are able to explore the numerous cultural phenomena that comprise them – the peoples, texts, sacred places, practices, rituals, art, music, and beliefs that perpetuate specific ways of living.

As a department within a major public research university, we are dedicated to the cultivation of a humanistic understanding of a wide range of religious traditions. Given our location in the Pacific and the multicultural environment we enjoy in Hawai‘i, our programs take the religious traditions of Asia and the Pacific as its special focus. Our expert faculty offers a unique set of research strengths, including: Buddhism in Asia and the West, Japanese religions, Hawaiian and Polynesian religions, Christianity in Asia and the Pacific, Indian religions and new religious movements. Students with advanced levels of language skills will also have the opportunity to translate and work with primary sources in Japanese, Chinese, Indian, and Polynesian languages.

Thank you for your interest in our department. We invite you to explore our website and discover more about our programs, our faculty, additional resources that we offer, and the career options that will be available to you with a Bachelor’s or Master’s degree in Religion.