These conclusions in turn are subjected to verification and once verified these become established laws, which can be relied upon in gathering and classifying the facts. to fact that religion has been a pivotal aspect of nearly every ancient and modern society, it should come to one’s realization that religion can be evaluated by various sociological theories. Ordinarily, it is believed that evolution of religion takes the form of a steady decline in number of gods that is a movement from polytheism to monotheism. The main importance of this principle is that it provides the basis of sociological thinking. October 14, 2020 by Essay Writer. Marx, Weber, Eliade, Evans Pritchard, Geertz, Livingston. Apart from theories which seek to explain religion with reference to some stable characteristics or traits in man, whether intellectual or emotional, there ate theories which instead of considering any particular factor or trait lay stress on laws, whether social or psychological. The philosopher Herbert Spencer traced the origin of religion in the respect given to ancestors combined with beliefs in ghosts and fairies caused by dream experience. Religion is used in order to justify these cultural norms, for example, norms surrounding marriage and reproduction (Macionis & Plummer, 2008, p612). He suggests that as a result of this, religion underlies our moral and emotional links with others. You can view samples of our professional work here. The monotheistic thinking symbolizes the victory of human intellect and reason over non-intellectual and irrational thinking. He proposes that the dream of an ideal society, an idealistic society that would eliminate evil and sufferings, suggest religion, as this is what religion aims for. Democracy. At this stage man had classified gods as well as natural and human forces. It brings forth the idea that society is imbalanced and biased. Free resources to assist you with your university studies! Nobody knows with … Ideally, a guide to the nature and history of philosophy of religionwould begin with an analysis or definition of religion. One branch of this school maintained that solar myths were most important and that primitive rituals and myths were primarily concerned with man’s relation to the sun. Durkheim wrote extensively in the area of religion. How many stages of growth, all societies pass through, has been suggested by centre? 2. The individual aspect is usually referred to as beliefs of the individual 1Department of Economics, LSE. This is the descriptive approach towards religion and this is precisely the approach being followed by modern psychologists of religion. Privacy Policy Write. Gilbert Ryle created a method referred to as "thick description." Thus, religion functions to bind society's members by prompting them to affirm their common values and beliefs on a regular basis. Weber’s most prominent work, “The Protestant ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism”, discussed the interaction between religion and economic aspects. Therefore, modern scholars have abandoned the approach of tracing the origin of the religion. Email: g.levy1@lse.ac.uk; r.razin@lse.ac.uk. PreserveArticles.com is a free service that lets you to preserve your original articles for eternity. The more evolved and developed form than that of Fetishism is known as Polytheism. According to Spencer the ghosts of ancestors were transformed into gods. But of late, scholars from diverse disciplines like psychology, sociology, anthropology, history and linguistics have succeeded in bringing the unbounded phenomenon of religion under some system and order and have also evolved methods and techniques for its study which have yielded impressive results. He believed that the new individualist forms of religion were simply another form of collectivist forms in society (Durkheim, 1976, p425). He focused on the sociology of religion, such as the relationship between religious ideas and commitments, with other sociological aspects, such as human behaviour in relation to economics Parsons, 1964, p xx). But as R.R. Before publishing your Article on this site, please read the following pages: 1. The topic I have chosen to discuss is religion, as theorised by Emile Durkheim and Max Weber. Study for free with our range of university lectures! Spell. What are the weaknesses of evolutionary theories? But he also admits that religion has profound emotional basis. No plagiarism, guaranteed! Unable to discover the natural causes of the various happenings the primitive man attributes them to imaginary or divine forces. Thus it is clear that theological thinking implies a belief in divine and extra-terrestrial forces. Under metaphysical thinking, belief in an abstract transcendental entity or Absolute replaces the belief in personal concrete God. Nobody knows with … There have been many issues in the existence of man that have been clouded with many uncertainties and ambiguities, but none of them have raised much controversy and debate than religion. The Animism or the Soul theory says the same thing in terms of the idea of Soul. Gravity. Email: g.levy1@lse.ac.uk; r.razin@lse.ac.uk. Elements of a Sociological Theory of Religion Secularization in the World: For and Against The Divine Command Theory is the view on morality that what is right is … All metaphysical knowledge is based upon speculation and is at best inferential knowledge. Secular-based theories of religion: . Sigmund Freud (1856–1939) and Karl Marx (1818–1883) both authored prominent humanistic theories of religion with scientific or quasi-scientific pretensions. According to the father of psychoanalysis, Sigmund Freud, the origin of religion can be traced back to the problem of child seeking to work out adequate relationships with his parents, particularly his father. Write. Finally, as signaled in a recent review of 850 research papers, the majority of well-conducted studies suggest that higher levels of religious involvement are positively associated with indicators of psychological well-being (life satisfaction, happiness, positive affect, and higher morale). Disclaimer: This work has been submitted by a university student. His work, centred around social change and industrial society, however, he became focused on social and moral order and how it was achieved and maintained in society. At this level of thinking there is marked lack of logical and orderly thinking. In this essay, I will be explaining Freud’s theories and ideologies on society, culture, and religion. Durkheim's theory of religion exemplifies how functionalists examine sociological phenomena. Durkheim also studied the social phenomena of religion in relation to how it constrains social behaviour (Dillon, 2010, p118). The sacred is defined as anything that is extraordinary and instils a sense of reverence and sometimes fear (Macionis & Plummer, 2008, p611). According to Durkheim, people see religion as contributing to the health and continuation of society in general. Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of UKEssays.com. Durkheim, along with Marx and Weber, is now seen as an extremely significant classical theorist, and has had an influence across many areas, such as education, religion, and health (Calhoun, 2007, p 133). Flashcards. Learn. Company Registration No: 4964706. The modern temper of man is such that it cannot remain satisfied with mere guess work; it craves positive knowledge which can be scientifically confirmed. Ideas about the origin and development of religion were initially based on the reports of missionaries and adventures about the nature of religion among the primitives. The individual aspect is usually referred to as beliefs of the individual 1Department of Economics, LSE. From the facts we generalize and draw conclusions. Specifically the psychological built of it. According to Durkheim, religion is a social cohesive. Each natural or human force had a presiding deity. He studied the subjective meaning and views of religion, and its cultural and historical origins, as well as how these produce institutional practices (Dillon, 2010, p117). Max Weber was born in Germany in 1964 to a Protestant family. He then comes to the conclusion that the idea of God and the religious teachings are some of human being’s strangest thoughts. The Elementary Forms of Religious Life presents Durkheim’s core belief that sociology of religion should be studied in a rational and objective manner. This fact was seen confirmed by dreams in which man saw somebody talking to him, who had died recently. STUDY. Individuals who partake in religious rituals or practices do so not only for spiritual reasons, but also to communicate their association with the religion and its believers as a whole. From simple essay plans, through to full dissertations, you can guarantee we have a service perfectly matched to your needs. These theories define what they present as universal characteristics of religious belief and practice. 11th Jan 2018 According to scholars subscribing to this view all the great symbols of the world’s religions were personifications of natural phenomena; the sun, moon, stars, storms, the seasons of the year. The latter is just one of the several arguments and explanations developed by Durkheim, with the view of determining the truth about humanity's obsession with religion. A religion is a system of beliefs, collective ideas, traditions, and rituals that serve the purpose of gathering, unifying, educating, and enlightening a group of people by influencing and guiding their insights, thoughts, and ways of life. Democracy can be defined as a form of government where all the citizens in the country have equal rights to make a decision in electing their leaders. There are several theories revolving around the existence of the universe religion and Christianity. Because I believe that he offers such interesting and important points that can help us understand the way our brain interprets these concepts and why. The theological thinking implies belief in another world wherein reside the divine forces which control the events in this world. There has been an evolution in the human thinking so that each succeeding stages is superior to and more evolved than the preceding stage: Auguste Comte has explained his classification of human thinking into various stages in the words, that each of our leading conceptions, each branch of our knowledge, passes successively through three different theoretical conditions-theological or fictitious, the metaphysical or abstract, and the scientific or positive. He examines how different religious traditions and their structures influence society, particularly in relation to the economy and capitalism. Here is your essay on the intellectualist theories of religion ! Sample Essay on Religion Religion is an aspect of the society’s way of life, implying that factors that affect the society’s way of life will have an impact on religious views. We're here to answer any questions you have about our services. The paper "Karl Marx and Emile Durkheim Theories of Religion" is an outstanding example of an essay on sociology. The phenomenon called religion is extremely variegated, complex, intricate and full of paradoxes. Match. What are the major contributions of Auguste Comte to Sociology? They are, therefore, seen to engage in the worship of trees etc. As the magician believes that nature can be overwhelmed and instrumentalized for personal benefit through magical spells, in the very same manner, religious man believes in the existence of spirits that must be pleased and cajoled by prayers, rather than overwhelmed by magic formulas, though religionist, like magician, seeks to understand the mechanism of nature and control it. As a matter of fact all these theories are highly speculative and conjectural and there are no adequate methods of verifying or diversifying them. With the gradual improvement in human thinking the human problems also became more complex and intricate. Auguste Comte is regarded to be the father of sociology. If you are interested in faith-based theories, we suggest that you do a search on Google with a search string like: origin Christianity. Marett argues, religion is not so much an intellectual endeavour as a set of profound emotional responses to various aspects or consider emotional factor to be called emotive theories and these are discussed below: According to the celebrated psychologist Wilhelm Wundt religion is simply projection of fear into the environment, and according to Otto religion is identical with numinous feeling. Terms in this set (11) Wink vs. Twitch example. The primitive man and children do not have the scientific outlook. The child regards his father a figure of absolute power, but as he grows the supremacy of father becomes untenable. TOS Marx endorses Feuerbach's view of religion as alienation and projection, but argues that religion, or alienated consciousness, is only an epiphenomenal reflection of a more basic dehumanizing alienation at the level of social and economic organization. Religious symbols, for example, have a meaning to large bodies of people (e.g., the Star of David for Jews; the crescent moon and star for Muslims; and the cross for Christians), (Nelson Education, chapter 17). (Macionis & Plummer, 2008, p611). Match. Description According to Durkheim, a religious system is best described as primitive if it exists in a society that lacks the simplest form of organization, and explaining the religious system does not require any further reference from previous forms of religion. This definition suggests that religion is collective within society and should be examined in this way. He recognised that religion was a social concept that needed to be explored in and of itself, as a primitive and simple level. Religion comes in as a substitute to fill up the vacuum created by displacement of the father. Secular-based theories of religion: . He believed that religion played a role of stereotyping within society, as it structures and preserves social groups and relationship and provides a social identity for groups. In early phases of religion we find stones, trees and such objects given extreme reverence and worshipped. With the gradual development in human thinking there occurred a change in the form of thinking. However, according to Wm. His research was halted by a period of serious depression, however, most of his prominent work was carried out after his breakdown, such as “The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism” (Calhoun, et al., 2007, p206). The last and most developed form of theological thinking is seen manifested in monotheism. We've received widespread press coverage since 2003, Your UKEssays purchase is secure and we're rated 4.4/5 on reviews.co.uk. The metaphysical or abstract thinking marks the second stage in the evolution of human thinking. According to Comte each successive stage is an improvement upon the earlier stage. Weber on the other hand, has a more individualist perspective. Psychologist William James refutes the theory that there is in man a specific emotion which may be considered either a cause of religion or religious experience per se. At some point in history, sons rebelled against the father, killed him and distributed the females among themselves. Durkheim and Weber both carried out their work around the turn of the 19th century. Comte gave birth not only to a specific methodology of studying knowledge but also analyzed the evolution of human thinking and its various stages. Registered Data Controller No: Z1821391. The Ghost theory explains the origin of Religion in the idea of Ghosts. When discussing the origin of religion, it's important to remember the term 'religion' is broad and far... Max Muller. Religion has been highly influential through the course of human history as a source of influence. In the process each investigator, irrespective of his personal attitudes, encountered the ineluctable fact that no account of human behaviour and social change is adequate which ignores the singular role and value of religious ideas and motives, dogmas and beliefs, faith and superstition in human behaviour. Karl Marx and Max Weber were influential sociologists that paved the way for modern... Sociology and Emile Durkheim. This approach asserts that people have faith because beliefs make sense insofar as they hold value and are comprehensible. Registered office: Venture House, Cross Street, Arnold, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, NG5 7PJ. These are: (i) Fetishism, (ii) Polytheism and (iii) Monotheism. However, this primal act and ensuing guilt are the psychological causes of belief in father-god whose wrath has to be placed through sacrifice. The functional theory of religion is basically a sociological theory which has been developed by … Under metaphysical thinking it is believed that an abstract power or force guides and determines the events in the world. Different from Kant, the 19th century Max Muller held to the nature-worship theory. Within this theory it has been stated that “religion is seen as a reference group, for many people, religion serves as a reference group to help them define themselves. 4. All work is written to order. Specifically the psychological built of it. This system of beliefs and practices is indispensible for the identity of a person and his or her sense of belonging to the group. If you need assistance with writing your essay, our professional essay writing service is here to help! What is Auguste Comte’s ‘Law of Three Stages’? Even in scientific thinking some traces of earlier types are to be usually found. Max Weber Theory Of Religion Essay Karl Marx And Max Weber. Broadly, these approaches can be divided into two groups: 1. which consider the question of origin of religion to be of paramount importance, and 2. according to which not origin but description is important. Though Otto did not call this numinous feeling an emotion, other psychologists have identified religion with the sense of mysterious, the uncanny, and the sacred and termed it as numinous emotion. Our mission is to liberate knowledge. They are really about society and its claims upon the man. Durkheim holds a collectivist view of society, exploring it from the perspective that religion has a cohesive effect on people through sharing values, symbols and social norms (Macionis and Plummer, 2008, p611). Marx’s theory states that religion was created to help control the non-superior class. Test. 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