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    #1

    -ism, -ist or a -ist?

    Hi,

    "What is your religious preference?"
    "Catholic."

    Is Catholic in this conversation a noun or an adjective or something else?
    I'd like to know how to answer to "What is your religious preference?" properly when I am a Buddhist.
    Could someone tell me below sentences were right or wrong as an answer to it?
    Thank you.

    My religious preference is Buddhism.
    My religious preference is Buddhist.
    My religious preference is a Buddhist.
    I prefer Buddhism.
    I prefer Buddhist.
    I prefer a Buddist.
    I am Buddhism.
    I am Buddhist.
    I am a Buddhist.

  1. Raymott's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: -ism, -ist or a -ist?

    Quote Originally Posted by abe_abby View Post
    Hi,

    "What is your religious preference?"
    "Catholic."

    Is Catholic in this conversation a noun or an adjective or something else?
    I'd like to know how to answer to "What is your religious preference?" properly when I am a Buddhist.
    Could someone tell me below sentences were right or wrong as an answer to it?
    Thank you.

    My religious preference is Buddhism.
    My religious preference is Buddhist.
    My religious preference is a Buddhist.
    I prefer Buddhism.
    I prefer Buddhist.
    I prefer a Buddist.
    I am Buddhism.
    I am Buddhist.
    I am a Buddhist.
    It's strange to describe religions as preferences. But Buddhism is the noun, the name of the religion. Buddhist is the adjective.
    "I adhere to Buddhism; I am Buddhist; I am a Buddhist." The answer to "What religion are you?" is "I am Buddhist" or "Buddhism is my religion."
    The 'a' is optional in many cases, eg. I am Australian; I am an Australian. It doesn't matter.

    The names of religions are very, very often mangled. Christian isn't technically a religion, Christianty is. Muslim isn't a religion; Islam is.
    Jewish is not; Judaism is. However, the adjective is usually given to the simple question, "What religion are you?"; "Buddhist". This is OK. But it's wrong to say "My religion is Buddhist".

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: -ism, -ist or a -ist?

    If you talk about a 'preference' you might be thought to be trivializing the matter - a devout person might resent being asked 'What is your religious preference.'

    b

  3. riquecohen's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: -ism, -ist or a -ist?

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    If you talk about a 'preference' you might be thought to be trivializing the matter - a devout person might resent being asked 'What is your religious preference.'

    b
    This question is found on the "Common Application" form for many US universities. They say that it gives them more information about the diversity of their applicants.

  4. BobK's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: -ism, -ist or a -ist?

    ...which doesn't mean it's not insensitive.

    For instance, if Ian Paisley were asked for his religious preference he'd probably say (in his shoutiest voice - there are many YouTube clips that will give you the idea) 'Religious preference does not enter into the case. Religious preference is neither here nor there. I was born a Protestant and a Protestant I will remain until the day I die.'

    b

  5. konungursvia's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: -ism, -ist or a -ist?

    Maybe he doesn't know that the Archbishop of Canterbury after visiting John Paul II called on all Anglicans to view the Pope as their true spiritual father. Or that Anglicanism is a high church liturgy that is basically non-Protestant, except that it's a breakaway from the Roman church. But I wouldn't argue with Ian Paisley.

  6. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: -ism, -ist or a -ist?

    Quote Originally Posted by riquecohen View Post
    This question is found on the "Common Application" form for many US universities. They say that it gives them more information about the diversity of their applicants.
    No-one is suggesting that asking for someone's religion is offensive or unacceptable. It is the use of the word "preference" that makes very little sense. Most people do not consider their religious beliefs a preference. They feel that their beliefs are an inextricable part of their whole character/personality/makeup. Theoretically, it would be possible for someone to answer that question with "Well, I'm a Catholic but I actually prefer Buddhism. It's just that my parents won't let me be a Buddhist."
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #8

    Re: -ism, -ist or a -ist?

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    No-one is suggesting that asking for someone's religion is offensive or unacceptable. It is the use of the word "preference" that makes very little sense. Most people do not consider their religious beliefs a preference. They feel that their beliefs are an inextricable part of their whole character/personality/makeup. Theoretically, it would be possible for someone to answer that question with "Well, I'm a Catholic but I actually prefer Buddhism. It's just that my parents won't let me be a Buddhist."
    I prefer the pasta over the chicken when choosing the meal on an airplane. A person's beliefs are not a "preference."

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    #9

    Re: -ism, -ist or a -ist?

    Thank you all for replying to my question.
    I apologize if the word "preference" hurt your feelings. I'm a religious person too, and I didn't mean to trivialize anything.
    Thanks to Raymott, I have learned to use a proper expression: "What religion are you?"

  7. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: -ism, -ist or a -ist?

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia View Post
    Maybe he doesn't know that the Archbishop of Canterbury after visiting John Paul II called on all Anglicans to view the Pope as their true spiritual father. Or that Anglicanism is a high church liturgy that is basically non-Protestant, except that it's a breakaway from the Roman church. But I wouldn't argue with Ian Paisley.
    Ian Paisley is not an Anglican.

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