True as religion in the dogmatic sense relinquishes

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Unformatted text preview: n it offends the fundamental moralities and purposes of Society. The feeling of "right" depends to a certain extent on the kind of teaching in early childhood, but more on the nature of the individual. It is based on his social feeling, his desire to be in harmony with a group or a God that essentially stands above any group. For the idea of God introduces an element having more authority than the group whom He leads. Here also is a factor of importance: choice is difficult for the great majority. Placed in a situation where more than one response is possible, an unhappy state of bewilderment results unless there are formulae for action. The leader is the chooser for the group; religion is an established system of choices even in its "Thou shalt not" injunctions, and to be at one with God implies that one is following an infallible leader, and doubt and uncertainty disappear. Trotter[1] points out clearly the role the feeling of certitude plays in developing codes. As life becomes more complex, as more choices appear, the need of an established method of choosing becomes greater. The careful, cautious, conscientious types develop a system of principles for choice of action; they discard the uncertainty of pleasure as a guide for the certainty of a code laid down and fixed. Duty is the north star of conduct! [1] "The Herd and its Instincts in Peace and War." In passing, an interesting development of our times is worth noticing. The tendency is to discard established codes, to weaken dogma and to throw more responsibility on the individual conscience. That is the meaning of the Protestant reformation, and it is the meaning of the growth of Unitarianism within the Protestant church; it is also the meaning of the reform movement in Judaism. The Catholic church has felt it in the breaking away of state after state from its authority, which virtually means that the states have thrown their citizens back on their own consciences and the state laws. In fact, reliance on law is in part an effort to escape the necessity of choosing. The pressure of external aut...
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This note was uploaded on 09/26/2011 for the course PSYCHOLOGY 110 taught by Professor Kannan during the Spring '11 term at Anna University Chennai - Regional Office, Coimbatore.

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