dog·​ma | \ ˈdȯg-mə How to pronounce dogma (audio) , ˈdäg- \
plural dogmas also dogmata\ ˈdȯg-​mə-​tə How to pronounce dogma (audio) , ˈdäg-​ \

Definition of dogma

1a : something held as an established opinion especially : a definite authoritative tenet
b : a code of such tenets pedagogical dogma
c : a point of view or tenet put forth as authoritative without adequate grounds
2 : a doctrine or body of doctrines concerning faith or morals formally stated and authoritatively proclaimed by a church

Synonyms for dogma


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Religious dogma and scientific dogma are sometimes at odds, as in arguments between those who believe in the biblical story of creation and those who believe in evolution. Since all dogma resists change, arguments of any kind are harder to resolve when both sides are dogmatic in their beliefs. Dogma and dogmatic are generally used disapprovingly; it's always other people who believe unquestioningly in dogma and who take a dogmatic approach to important issues.

Examples of dogma in a Sentence

The Saudi regime has tried to deflect questions about its management of the country … by supporting and spreading an uncompromising religious dogma. — Fareed Zakaria, Newsweek, 1 Oct. 2001 He was known for his ability to burst the bubble of generally accepted dogma, to puncture it with data and detached observations. — Sherwin B. Nuland, New Republic, 19 Feb. 2001 It had long been biological dogma that whales were scarce in the open ocean, but the Navy was picking up whale songs thousands of miles from land. — Sharon Begley et al., Newsweek, 31 Jan. 2000 For in creating a cultural orthodoxy designed to combat racism, urban disorder, and a legacy of oppression, we subject ourselves to delusional dogma, the tyranny of conformity … — Gerald Early, Harper's, January 1997 These new findings challenge the current dogma in the field. the Catholic dogma of the bodily assumption of the Virgin Mary See More
Recent Examples on the Web But a new generation of environmentalists is beginning to challenge the anti-nuclear dogma of its activist forebears. Washington Post, 28 Apr. 2022 Biden’s 18th-century solution to a 21st-century energy problem Green-energy dogma is like an ocean liner -- slow to change course and difficult to halt. Jonathan Lesser, National Review, 14 Apr. 2022 Artistic freedom implies the ability to defy dogma, break precedent and challenge authority. Suzanne Nossel, WSJ, 10 Mar. 2022 De Niro took the Stanislavskian ethic of rigorous preparation to an extreme without being beholden to the dogma that had grown up around the Method in the United States. Evan Kindley, The New Republic, 31 Jan. 2022 We weren’t beaten over the head with political dogma. Scott Roxborough, The Hollywood Reporter, 25 Feb. 2022 Even though most progressives disagree with conservative anti-Covid dogma, conservatives have the right to express it. WSJ, 8 Feb. 2022 The Old Believers are big on old liturgy and ritual, but it’s dogma invested with intense mystery. Brian T. Allen, National Review, 26 Feb. 2022 The main people who care about relevance, though, are academics, obsessed with making the classics meaningful to a generation that’s been subjected to the binary dogma of education: diversity and inclusion. New York Times, 18 Feb. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dogma.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of dogma

1534, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for dogma

Latin dogmat-, dogma, from Greek, from dokein to seem — more at decent

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Last Updated

9 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Dogma.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for dogma


dog·​ma | \ ˈdȯg-mə How to pronounce dogma (audio) \

Kids Definition of dogma

1 : something firmly believed She repeated medical dogma against eating sugar.
2 : a belief or set of beliefs taught by a church

More from Merriam-Webster on dogma

Nglish: Translation of dogma for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of dogma for Arabic Speakers Encyclopedia article about dogma


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