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Unformatted text preview: 11-10 What is religion? - Emile Durkeim said "A religion is a unified system of beliefs and practices relataive to sacred things" - no specific belief or practice shared by all religions - the similarity was that all religions tend to develop a community - all religions had a separation between sacred and profain - sacred: association with the supernatural, inspires reverence or fear - profain: not concerned with religious aspects, but the aspects that are mundane Three elements of religion 1. Beliefs that some things are sacred 2. Practices centering on things considered sacred 3. A Moral Community resulting from a group's beliefs and practices -church - any moral community The Functionalist Perspective serves social functions, to keep a society together - questions about ultimate meaning - provides meaning for these (purpose of life, why suffering?) - provides emotional comfort - keeps people in order, gives them a sense of hope, living for purpose - social solidarity - unites members with shared attitudes and values - guidelines for everyday life - how to act, what's moral - social control - sets individual limits on peoples behaviors - adaptation - makes assimilation with others of same beliefs easier - support for the government - advocate respect for gov'nt - social change - some advocate for Functional Equivalents of Religion - organizations like alcoholics anonymous - psychotherapy - humanism - transcendental meditation - political parties Dysfunctions of Religion - used as a justification for persecution ex. Salem witch trials, Democratic Rebpulic of Congo witches - war and terrorism ex. crusades - ...
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This note was uploaded on 06/19/2008 for the course ASOC 115 taught by Professor Wong during the Fall '06 term at SUNY Albany.
- Fall '06