Sociological Perspectives on Religion

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“Religion is a ritualized system of beliefs and practices related to things defined as sacred by an organized community of believers.” (Basirico et.al. 379). Religion is an important element in the society because it influences the way individuals act and think. It has shaped the relationship and bonding among families as well as influenced the decision made in economics and politics. Religion in general has contributed to shape a society and a government structure which will influence the way the individuals under certain governmental structure behave. Sociologists are interested in religion mainly because religious belief is heavily rooted in individuals’ lives and it helps sociologists to interpret human’s actions, expression, and experiences. Due to its significance in society, sociologists try to study religion in depth to explain and understanding religions beyond science. Supernatural belief, which is the core of religion, cannot be explained using science which relies only on facts and data. According to Emile Durkheim, religion consists of three elements, a system of beliefs and practices, a community or church, and sacred things which are common throughout all religions. Although a lot of people may have thought that sociological studies in religion will undermine one’s faith towards their beliefs, in my opinion, sociological perspective in religion will have no effect on one’s faith toward their beliefs. Religion may have influenced the way an individual, society, and government act but sociological studies in religion does not have effect on one’s faith. Scientists believe that religion is merely psychological effect. There is no proof to the existence of God and scientific explanation on shamanism which revolves a... ... middle of paper ... ...Other fact is that, even though sociology and science have keep questioning about the existence of supernatural power, practice of one’s religion is still deeply rooted in the society. This proved that sociology and science does not influenced one’s faith. Moreover, sociology has a neutral role in religion because sociologists view religion as part of culture that need to be preserve the way it is not eliminated or changed. Therefore, it doesn’t try to undermine or strengthen one’s faith. In addition, scientists have also come to believe that supernatural power somehow exists in the society because they have invented equipment that is used to explain the supernatural phenomena. This means that science have been trying to adapt and accept that religion is an important study in science. Therefore, science and sociology have neutral role in influencing people’s faith.

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