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Beliefs And Practices Essay

624 words - 3 pages

• Philosophical (18-34)
1) Enlightenment(p. 19)
- Movement that promoted the use of reason and the scientific methods to critique the large assortment of beliefs and practices. It would then free people from the bondage of these obligated beliefs and practices.
2) The Greek philosopher Anaximander (21)
- introduced the concepts of the essence apeiron, the undifferentiated or limitless. States that all things emerge as dualities or opposites (such as hot and cold) which interact with each other to generate the fullness of creation
3) The greek philosopher Xeophanes (21) – polytheistic ideas that favored one ultimate power. Stated that people made out gods in their own image
*sought to use philosophy to explain irrational things in religion – something weird should be taken as symbolically.
4) Aristotle (p21)– Theory of non-contradictions: a thing can be one or another. Not both at the same time
5) Kant: (25,30)
Enlightenment = emergence from “self-imposed immaturity”. He ...view middle of the document...

Interpretive Approaches (59-60) - **Geertz
- we need to see and understand the symbols of the insiders
1) Radcliffe-Brown: Says that content isn’t important, context is. Hence, importance of rituals , social relationships, shared meanings, shared anxieties (57, 65)
**social improves functions; the point is to generate anxiety in order to have a feeling you share with other people – you can relate
2) Turner: Transitionism (evens everyone out)
ritual= “liminal”/transition period, erasure of differences (62, 66)
3) Douglas: order + ritual purity, group/grid (63-designed to draw orders-, 66)
4) Durkheim: god = group (57, 65 – 67)
People worshiping God get some sense of group, helps to show and maintain the image of supporting God
Religion is about social reality not the super natural. There has to be an illusion to bring the people together. Less belief make the group become fragmented and society becomes weaker
5) Marx: escape from injustice (68)
religion used by the more powerful to keep the weaker in check. “Control” those on the bottom (life is hard) you go to heaven because God loves you
*p. 64 Western focus = textual focus
*Problem with religion  Dogma- authoritative (do what you are told to) **message of conformity
- grid = world view
- god = reflection of the connecting with others LMAO IUNO WTF I MEANT
- experience = unmediated access to god  unlike confession etc.

• Sociological (66-73)  does comparative things to find patterns: context is not important; its the structure of it
1) Jonathan Z. Smith: (72)
Scholars should ask: “So what?”
• Imagining Religion
• Drudgery Divine
➡ Protestant bias in study of religion - Focus on individual belief and experience instead of religion as an institution
Martin Luther – corruption, church places itself between people and God  church kept the text, priests were the authority of the comprehension of texts
Protestantinism = individual belief - no middle man. Church doesn’t get in the way
founders of new religions have an idea and branch off from the main one (EX) catholic (institution), protestant (individualized)
Sam Gill – tracked the ritual back to its origins, back to the researchers notes and noticed how researches interpreted and how assuming and imposing meaning changes data. Point is to doubt scholarship. HEIGENBERG UNCERTINTY PRINCIPLE – act of observing what was observed

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