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RELIGION AND

SOCIETY

CARLA/ARIANNA VILLALUNA

THE NATURE OF RELIGION

It is a universal and widespread


phenomenon, a part of the
cultural system, because it is
assumed to meet some basic
need of human being. Religion
has persisted and still exerts a
great influence in lives of people.

What is Religion?
Comes from the Latin word religare
which means, to bind together. It
may be about the existence of
supernatural being or a system of
beliefs and worship. It may be about
the existence of God or gods or the
existence of ultimate beings. It can
also be about the presence of rituals
or the presence of moral codes.

RELIGION ACCORDING TO SOME PHILOSOPHERS:


Taylor (1871)
belief in spiritual beings and the instiutions and practices
associated with these beliefs
Gelliner
set of doctorines providing answers to ultimate and exsistential
questions for which there are no empirical answers
Evans-Pritschard
Religion embodies beliefs or representations which express the
nature of sacred things as well as rites prescribing how a person
should behave in the presence of sacred objects.
Durkheim (1961)
Unified system of beliefs and practices relative to sacred things,
things set apart and forbidden-beliefs and practices which unite into
one single moral community called a church.

SUB CATEGORIES OF RELIGION


Prophetic They guide and warn society, predict what will happen in the future
Revealed described as Law-giving religion, they find their symbolic center in
set of revelations by a god or gods. The revelations are in the religions holy
scriptures
Salvation creation of Christianity, emphasis on sin and salvation
Sacramental comes from Latin sacramentum meaning an oath, a sacred
thing, a mystery
Mystical mystical experiences play an important role in understanding
nature, learning about the divine and becoming religiously devoted
Tribal it is not one which claims to have a religious message for all of
humanity, it does not offer any means of universal salvation, does not expect
anyone to care about what it has to say

ELEMENTS OR COMPONENTS
1) Sacred object supernatural being or force of ghost or spirit
with supernatural power. An object that symbolizes deep feelings
2) Sacred belief sacred things get meaning from the beliefs
that is associated with it
3) Rituals visible and symbolic expressions of religion.
Performing religious acts
4) Religious community share common beliefs and practices
about the sacred which binds them together. According to
Durkheim: society is the soul of religion. Religion celebrates and
creates community

TECHNIQUES OF RELIGION
prayer communicate through thoughts and speech
Sacrifice desire and gift-giving
Reverence respect with love and admiration
Divination knowledge of supernatural powers
Taboo - abstain from certain acts opposed to the
desires of the Gods
Duty opposite of taboo. Please by positive act
Ritual performing religious acts
Ceremony interconnected/related rituals
Magic make certain forces which will produce
desired results

THEORIES ON ORIGIN OF RELIGION


1) Faith Based - 19 major world religions
subdivided into 270 large religious groups.
Different religious creation storied describe
how humans, species, universe existed.
From revelation from one or more deities
2) Science based anthropologists,
evolutionary biologists, researchers have
reached proto humans who originated in
Africa

EVOLUTION
David Barret et al, editor World Christian
Encyclopaedia : first organized religions
based on fertility . They focused on the
worship of great Earth Goddess and
evolved to include male gods who was given
importance by the priests
Today
a. monotheistc religion is one, one single
male god is worshiped
b. henotheistic single man deity but
theres other gods, goddesses, heroes or

RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATION
1. Ecclesia- It has an elaborate formal
bureaucratic structure with its hierarchy
of church officials and well-developed
dogmas and rituals.
- Emphasis on the sacraments and the
creed.
- determines and stabilizes the social
order.

2. Sect- a group that has broken


away from a parent church.
- Beliefs and rituals are less
developed.
- intolerant of secular world and
other religious groups.
- characterised by ascetism,
strict, disciplined life style

3. Denomination- come into existence when church


or ecclesia lose its religious monopoly in society
-.Sects which survived over a considerable period
of time settle down to become denominations.
Characterstics: good terms with state and secular
powers
- rely on birth for membership increase
- accept changing doctrine and practice
- follow ritual and worship that discourages emotional
expression

4. Cult embrace something new or that


has been completely forgotten or lost
(lost scriptures or new prophecy)
a. Audience cults no formal organization,
members follow cult doctorines from tv,
books, magazines etc.
b. Client cults religious leaders who offer
services to those who follow. Eg scientology
c. Cult movements: client cults which
become larger and tightly organized eg.

FUNCTIONS OF RELIGION
1. Promotes social solidarity and social
control
- Relationships develop, establish norms for
proper behaviour, sanctions and ways for
coping with mistakes through prayers, fasting,
penance
-. The religious rites and ceremonies usually
involving mass singing or mass prayers unite
members of the society and enhance solidarity.
In Catholicism, the were united to celebrate
some special or traditional occasions such as
Misa de Gallo and Misa de Aguinaldo.

2. Legitimation

helps validate the establishment and dominant


groups within a society. There is a close
relationship between the religious practices and
the social arrangements in their society. It
justifies existing social values and arrangement
3. Social adapatation

helped immigrants adapt to new land and life.


Provides ethnic unity and discipline that helps
the immigrants

4. Consecrating lifes events


birth, maturity, marriage and death
the human life cycle is explained
and celebrated by all religions

5. Emotional security
provides explanation of the
unknown and promotes social
security . They derive comfort from
religion because it gives the whys
and wherefores of the problems and
how to cope with them

6. Social Functions
Religious Organizations carry out welfare activities and social programs,
operate charitable institutions, hospitals, orphanages, medical clinics, and
etc. They also provide schools for the poor.
7. Latent or unintended functions of religion
a. Provide setting for sociability and worship
b. Promotes obedience and subservience to existing system for the
unquestioning attitude developed
c. Disintegrating factor in society
d. May create guilt feelings lead to disorganization for non conformists who
are condemned by the church
e. Serve as convenient tool rationalizing social inequality
f. Challenging unjust social systems by recapturing the democratic and
revolutionary spirit of their fatih, solidarity with the expelled and
overthrowing social systems which support inequality, poverty and misery

WORLDS MAJOR RELIGIONS


Worlds Major
Religions

Country of origin

No. of
followers

Doctorines, tenets or teachings

BahaI

Baghdad

5 mill

Oneness of GOD and humanity,


equality, universal education,
world peace, world government

Buddhism (4th
largest)

Southern Nepal

307 mill

Meditation and righteous actions


(karma) to Nirvana (state of
enlightenment)

Confucianism

China

uncertain

Relationship between
individuals, society on li (proper
behavior) and jen (sympathetic
attitude)

Catholicism (largest)

Rome

980 mill

Gospel of Jesus, bible teachings,


7 sacraments, jesus as the
method of salvation

Hinduism (3rd largest)

India

648 mill

Veda and upanishads (sacred


scriptures), yoga, Brahma the
creator, Vishnu the preserver,
Shiva destroyer

Islam (2nd largest)

Saudi Arabia

840 mill

Worship Allah, Koran (scripture),


5 pillars of Islam, fast of
Ramadam

Judaism

Judea

18 mill

One God word revealed in Torah


hewbew buble, reform movement,
conservative Jew

Orthodox Eastern
Church

Spit from roman


Catholic Church

158 mill

Biblical scriptures and tradition,


guided by holy spirit as christian
truth

Protentatism
a. Baptisits

England,

31 mill

Do not use alcohol and tobacco,


baptism is total immersion

b. church of Christ

Kentucky,U.S

1.6 mill

c. Church of England

England

6,000 in US

d. Presbyterian

Scotland

3.2 mill

e. Lutheran Church

Delware, US

8 mill US

f. Seventh Day Adventist

North America

734,527

g. Pentecostal Churches

Scotland

3.5mill US

new testament, simple rites,


baptism in adults
supremacy of bible, doctorines,
creeds on book of common prayer
Faith in bible, baptism, members
called presbyters,
Bible teaching, salvation through
faith conservatism in
social/religios ehics, church
organized in synods
2nd coming of Jesus, dedicate
infants to God, no tobacco or
alcohol
church is perfectionist,
communion, baptism infant/adults

PERSISTENCE OF RELIGION
Integral component of how people view
themselves. Ones faith is tied to ones
nationality, culture, race and even sexual
orientation.
Links them directly to God and other deities.
Provide rituals for life's major transitions: birth,
marriage, pregnancy, death, etc.
teaches rewards beyond ones ability to
imagine: associated with salvation, eternal
punishments for the unsaved and by which
people become saved.

Provides an understanding of the universe.


Teaches what is expected after death, origin
of the worlds life forms and the universe.
Source of ones moral codes- gods
expectations for the behaviour of each
believer.
Religious community gives unquestioning
belief in their own faith groups teachings.

SOCIAL CONCEPTS OF RELIGION


1. Folk-Catholicism: Eg. encantados, use of
anting-anting and talismans.
2. Split-level Christianity: Eg. Catholics who
commit graft and corruption and attend
mass every Sunday.
3. Faith healing
4. Occult
5. Invisible or private religion
6. Fundamentalist Revival