“For Emile Durkheim, religion and society are inseparable and- to each other- virtually indispensable” (Pals, Eight Theories of Religion). Religion has been highly influential through the course of human history as a source of influence. In particular, the transition between traditional society and modern society, and how this influences how social structures and relationships are adapted and maintained (Dillon, 2010 p79). A fundamental feature of any theory of religion is, or should be, an explanation of the link between the two most observed aspects of religion, the individual aspect and the social aspect. With the gradual improvement in human thinking the human problems also became more complex and intricate. PreserveArticles.com: Preserving Your Articles for Eternity. The Divine Command Theory is the view on morality that what is right is … 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). The above four theories are known as intellectual origin theories, because they assume that the primary source and value of religion is seeking answer to some questions. 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. The functional theory of religion is basically a sociological theory which has been developed by … The symbols of religion appear to their users to be about a realm of supernatural powers and forces. However, the both studied religion form two very different perspectives, although both thought in evolutionary terms (Parsons, 1964, p xxvii). The primary intention of religion is to influence the moral of life (Durkheim, 1976, p420). 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. In the following pages we shall discuss these stages briefly: The first or primary stage of human thinking is theological or fictitious. 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. According to Durkheim, people see religion as contributing to the health and continuation of society in general. We're here to answer any questions you have about our services. study of religion in The Elementary Forms of Religious Life is widely renowned to be one of the founding theories and definitions of the sociology of religion. With the gradual development in human thinking there occurred a change in the form of thinking. aland94. According to Spencer the ghosts of ancestors were transformed into gods. 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. If you need assistance with writing your essay, our professional essay writing service is here to help! This fact was seen confirmed by dreams in which man saw somebody talking to him, who had died recently. Before publishing your Article on this site, please read the following pages: 1. What is the distinction between magic, science and religion? Like Durkheim, Weber recognised that there is not a known society, that doesn’t include something that can be classified as religion (Parson, 1964, p xxvii). Such factors include race, ethnicity, social class, or neighborhoods. Comte gave birth not only to a specific methodology of studying knowledge but also analyzed the evolution of human thinking and its various stages. Disclaimer: This work has been submitted by a university student. This type of thinking of children is also at this level. Durkheim also claims that we organize life into the sacred and the profane, and neither can exist without the other (Durkheim, 1976, p308). Gravity. According to Sir James Frazer, religion developed out of an original magical stage of human culture. A personal and concrete God could not account for the simultaneous creation and annihilation. Sociological and anthropological theories about religion (or theories of religion) generally attempt to explain the origin and function of religion. 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. The primary interest of the early pioneers in the fields of social, anthropological and psychological research was to discover the origin of religious ideas in man rather than to describe them. Auguste Comte is regarded to be the father of sociology. Thus, religion functions to bind society's members by prompting them to affirm their common values and beliefs on a regular basis. The sacred is defined as anything that is extraordinary and instils a sense of reverence and sometimes fear (Macionis & Plummer, 2008, p611). Under metaphysical thinking it is believed that an abstract power or force guides and determines the events in the world. At some point in history, sons rebelled against the father, killed him and distributed the females among themselves. In his earlier writing, “The future of an illusion,” he regards religion as an illusion, which is equivalent to atheism. About Essay Sauce. He examines how different religious traditions and their structures influence society, particularly in relation to the economy and capitalism. 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. 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). Max Weber was born in Germany in 1964 to a Protestant family. After theological and metaphysical thinking comes the next stage known as scientific or positive stage. 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