Essay on Women's Religious Social Roles

Essay on Women's Religious Social Roles

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Before the standardization of Christian doctrine, early Christians created a large number of sects based on their diverse understanding of Christianity and its implications. The view about women is a subject in particular. In “God The Father/God The Mother”, Elaine Pagels outlines Orthodoxy and Gnostics’ distinct attitudes toward women in Christianity in terms of symbolism of god and women’s religious and social roles. She then explains how the change of Christians’ social status and the conversion of Hellenized Jews promote Orthodoxy’s constraining idea of women finally out-compete Gnostic’s supportive one. Sharing the same opinion with Pagels, I would add that the degree of popularity of the Christianity and ·the assimilation of Christianity by Egyptian, Mediterranean and Persian religions also take crucial role in the transformation of attitudes to women, from affirming to suppressive.
Initially, during mid-1st century, as a newly-established sect, Christian doctrines were shared by only a small number of people and needed as much individuals as possible gathering together to propagandize and develop the sect to a strong religion; therefore, even though deriving from Judaism which discriminated and excluded female, Christians at that time welcomed the contribution from not only men but also women, generating a gender egalitarian atmosphere. The intend of including more female believers and the ideas of sexual equality were clearly reflected in Gospels written between 70 AD to 100 AD. In the gospel of Mark 5:25-34, talked by Professor Chang in class, for example, Jesus is described to cure a woman who suffered from unusually consisting menstrual bleeding for more than 10 years. (Chang “Socio-political Challenge of the Jesu...


... middle of paper ...


...and social factors, the future cannot as well. Therefore, if we could analyze the nowadays political and social conditions well, we probably can make a prediction about the future days.




Works Cited
Bentley, Jerry, and Herbert Ziegler. Traditions and Encounters: A Globa Perspective on the Past. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2010. Print.
Chang, Edmond. “The Socio-political Challenge of the Jesus Movement.” Making of the Modern World 12, University of California, San Diego. La Jolla, California. 9 January 2014. Lecture.
Chang, Edmond, ed. MMW 12: Classical and Medieval Tradition. Comp. Edmond Chang. La Jolla: University of California, San Diego, 2013. 81-88. Print.
Mary. “Gospel of Mary” Chang 95-100
Thomas. “The Gospel of Thomas” Chang 89-93
Pagels, Elaine. “God the Father/God the Mother: The Gnostic Gospels and the Suppression of Early Christian Feminism.” Chang 141-155

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