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Autor: people • October 6, 2012 • Essay • 603 Words (3 Pages) • 410 Views
A Perspective on Religion
Religion has taken many forms around the world as a shared set of beliefs and worship in something, someone, or someplace supernatural, beyond physical perception and relies on faith and conviction. Religion is complex and varies with different ceremonies, traditions, symbols, superstitions, and scriptures. Centric to people's lives, each religion different conclusions on who created us, how we were created, why we are here, how we should live and what is beyond after death.
Religion is a human quality. It can be found in some shape of every human culture around the planet. Philosophers like Ludwig Feuerbah (1804-1872) and Sigmund Freud believed in scientific materialism, a perception that the supernatural is imagined by humans; only the material world exists and the human qualities and emotions like power and love are projected onto an imagined supreme being. Karl Marx (1818-1883) was a social philosopher that believed religion originated from the oppressed who desired a better life and that it gave people a false illusion of pacification.
Religion is healing and useful. The sociological explanation of religion being found everywhere is that it is a part of social structure and holds societies and individuals together. French sociologist Emile Durkheim (1858-1917) proposed religion is the glue that holds society together and have the capability to create harmony and spread social virtues. John Bowker authored a book entitled, "Is God a Virus" which asserted that religion usefully serves a biological purpose of protecting gene replication and fostering the nurturing of children and may be a genetic survival mechanism in the brain.
A Duke University study found that religions people live longer, are less likely to be depressed or have high blood pressure or smoke. Other studies have indicated that patients with faith recover faster but there have been mixed results from studies on the potential of prayer to heal illnesses. Meditation has proven to be useful for a better mental state and psychoanalysts like Erich Fromn (1900-1980) believe that have that religion fills a need for the mind's stability. Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948) stated that religious meditation transformed him from a shy fearful child to a great political figure.
Religion is a rational and nonrational seeking of truth and unseen reality. Rational thought and nonrational methods of knowing are two of the basic ways of apprehending reality but the human mind has several levels of conscientiousness and does not function in one method alone. Martin Luther (1483-1546) who founded the Protestant branch of Christianity described his questioning belief in storms of doubt as, "raged with a fierce and agitated conscience." Religious views are looked at as immanent, present in world and transcendent, outside the universe. The theistic