Give at least three examples of how religions have incorporated characteristics of cosmology. Myth is not the conventional definition we think of rather a much deeper concept. They (fundamentalists) are counter-modernist. Beware of the Biased Distinction Between Civilized and Tags: Fundamentalism, Pataki: Against Religion. Its just away to write off groups without engaging with them or their issues. The fundamentalist, whether Christian, Judaistic or Islamic, will accept all but only into one exclusive “truth”. There are intelligent, thoughtful comments and commenters regularly offering productive discussion. This common use though isn’t correct. Ghandi as well. No group will ever admit basic error or change their views like that because they are based on “beliefs” and “faith”.) Religious pluralism is a problem for the fundamentalist. Patik is challenging the whole mentality of those groups that see themselves as unique, elect or chosen, and the rest of the world as somehow lost, benighted. . Sad that the US of A is more becoming a theocracy. Literal interpretations and obedience leave no room for uncertainty, no matter how uncertain the real world. 5. The sixth characteristics in Islam are that there is no clergy or religious monopoly. Your objections point to this very fear — of losing distinctness of identity. 1. Patik discusses the changes in usage and application of the word ‘fundamentalist’ in the last few decades. The 7 Main Characteristics of Religion Some characteristics of religion are the worship of gods or prophets, beliefs in a system of norms and values, symbology or places of worship. He is not “lumping” people together illegitimately or in any personal dismissive sense, he is classifying social movements and groupings, ….. just as another social psychologist might classify and study groups with other characteristics, such as attitudes towards public education, capital punishment, environmental consciousness, etc. “I always enjoy reading Neil’s blog because I think that he is careful, thorough, intellectually fair, and honest.”. More often than not, the beliefs and ethical ideals of a religion are determined by the prevailing social conditions and attitudes within its community of origin. Their ancestors came to America to preserve their 17th century religious prejudices and today’s descendants have remained isolated as the rest of the world has long since moved on. Such a religion therefore usually has an ability to adapt to the physical environment surrounding it (much like a lizard changing colors). “For an excellent example of generally high-quality scholarship by someone who isn’t a biblical studies professor, see Neil Godfrey’s work posted on the website vridar.org.”, “Thanks for your very elaborate review! The Mythological Dimension of Religion is composed of myths, symbols, and tales through which the Spiritual World is symbolized. It is easy for everyone to read and understand the Noble Quran and the Hadith (Traditions of the Prophet (pbuh), and to adjust his life accordingly. Segmental division of society: The caste system divides the whole society into various segments or sections. This saying rings true between both the religion and its converts (as a general rule). . Ironically, your apparent defensiveness about this points to the “persecution syndrome” implicit in #5’s “Since there is only one true way, it is under constant threat.” — yes? ... a rejection of industrialization and organized religion, and the inclusion of supernatural or mythological elements. As an Atheist and gay male, I cannot believe the lies and crap that millions of bible believers are taught in sunday school and in church. It is the psychology (not the dogmas) of those groups that Pataki is discussing. I think it expands, and contributes to, the effort in honouring Thomas that we with Lukasz originally had in mind with this volume. Rituals often reflect the ways of the past as well as the ways of divine beings, through legends most often directly associated with the features of the ceremony or festival at hand. These written rules are not only seen to apply individually, but can quite often be seen reflected within a society's economic regulations and political laws. All different. (A cell phone photo won’t do for the…, I will see if I can get a scan to you Neil. you seem to be incapable of thinking that anyone thinks differently from you — to a fundamentalist everyone is a fundamentalist. This can only be achieved through God’s rule — through the national executive and legislature itself. In addition to the elements already mentioned, organized religion depends greatly upon the inner fears of its converts. Female sexuality must be controlled and clear impassable boundaries must be established between men and women. Musings on biblical studies, politics, religion, ethics, human nature, tidbits from science. These events continue to impact the marketplace, yet decision makers are … . Therefore, both mythological and doctrinal dimensions of religion nearly always must be viewed in a 'going hand-in-hand' manner. Women are subordinated in marriage, reproduction, abortion, ordination, access to or emphasis on education. If so, you are expressing part of the black and white problematic phenomenon that Patik is attempting to help us understand — at a psychological level. Characteristics of African religion A Supreme being: Throughout most of Africa there is belief of a supreme being, described by one or more names, either in terms of activities or place of abode. Characteristics of Allah - continued Fairness. They are still children psychologically. He notes that the above attributes cluster in patterns that point to something quite possibly independent of cultural variables — a certain set of psychological traits that he sees bound inextricably with narcissism. Was Constantine a Christian? CHAPTER ONE: CHARACTERISTICS OF BASIC RELIGIONS Chapter Outline and Unit Summaries I. And Judah and Israel dwelt safely, every man under his vine and under his fig tree, from Dan even to Beersheba, all the days of Solomon. Note that I do not use the term ‘amateur’ pejoratively. In an earlier post you suggested everyone thinks that way. The following two tabs change content below. If we don’t use fundamentalist to refer to those groups, then you are free to suggest another word for them, and we can discuss them under that term if you wish. And it is their childish demands (and even tantrums) for their own ways (competing as they are across different cultures) that poses a threat to societies aspiring to democratic and enlightenment values. My point was mainly that while these groups may well be referred to by a majority as ‘fundamentalist’ and they display these 10 ‘problems’ we should still be cautious about how we use the word fundamentalist. This post is going straight to the March 2016 Biblical Studies Carnival.”, “Neil, this is actually rather useful. The majority commonly misuse a lot of words. I think people can be convinced though. It is due to such assumed knowledge that the religion's priesthood maintains positions of honor and influence within the community. Your voice is unique. They’re not the same as definitions. By the way, my thanks to Neil for an ongoing superb job of exposing Jim’s review for what it is: a farcical and none too effective exercise in mythicism assassination, nothing to do with rational, let alone unbiased, scholarship. Christians believe that God created the world and everything in it. “To be chosen is to be marked for a superior fate; one is marked by virtue of being superior“. They (fundamentalists) are “generally assertive, clamorous, and often violent”. Most of the religion's rules for good brotherhood are written within religious doctrine or constitution. (Pataki does not address it here, but of course the Book of Acts was written to portray a “pre-heretical” golden age in its earliest chapters at least.). And they even admit this in many cases, being proud to become “as children” and remain “a child of god” etc. . Each of these castes is a well developed social group, the membership of … #5 above. All religions have a sense that there is a right way to live and act, and if we do this, we reap some sort of spiritual benefit. Doctrines most commonly make use of myths and symbols. Neil is the author of this post. To suggest that “tolerance” and “reasonable” and “enlightenment” (ie understanding) are “black and white” views of the world, or in any sense the equivalent of “elect”, “chosen” or “unique” is simply nonsense and a facile perversion of what is meant by “black and white” etc. The first concept of religion is sacred, which is the idea that religion binds individuals and communities together. 1. It might be termed magic, or sorcery, cult or some other description but not as a full fledged religion. I realized that I hadn’t added your blog to our blogroll. Universalizing religions: Attribute creation of universe to a supreme being/god. “God’s law always trumps human law.” (Pataki does not directly say it, but we know democracy is not a value of the fundamentalist.). Pataki notes that this attitude “is not restricted to fundamentalist groups but is a prominent mark of all of them.” (p.29). Basic Religions Not Measured Against Other World Religions on an Evolutionary Scale 1. Both human and animal sacrifices were offered to their gods 3. . They had feasts to honour their gods 7. ), along with the consequent bloodshed; the militancy, threats, intimidation and sometimes violence on the part of America’s “Christian Right”. The life of constantine — Eusebius Pamphilius. When less emphasis is placed upon the spiritual aspect, and the physical actions are allowed dominance, as is often the case in congregational rituals and ceremonies, the ritual then becomes much like an empty shell, containing little if any true substance... becoming worth next to nothing from a positive spiritual viewpoint. ‘Vridar: Musings on biblical studies, politics, religion, ethics, human nature, tidbits from science’ (http://vridar.org/) by Neil Godfrey”, — Klaas Spronk, – Bibliotheca Orientalis LXXI, 3/4 (2014), “Neil, for what it is worth it is obvious to me that if you had earlier in life tracked into a graduate program at one of the world’s leading research universities you would be one of the world’s formidable ones. I doubt it. Ideally, a guide to the nature and history of philosophy of religionwould begin with an analysis or definition of religion. (Part 1), Brodie: Beyond the Quest for the Historical Jesus. I think it’s entirely correct to call someone like Mother Theresa or M. L. King a fundamentalist, extremist and a radical. , They may well be commonly referred to fundamentalist. African people relate to or worship God through praying, singing and dancing, making sacrificial offerings, dedications and invoking blessings. It is not hard to see a large portion of the US population being a large-scale version of the Pitcairn Islander descendants of Bligh’s Bounty mutineers. (Part 3), Pit Stop in the Nanine Charbonnel Posts on the Literary Construction of Jesus Christ, The Why and What of WikiLeaks — and the Fear and Self-Censorship Response, Gospels Cut from Jewish Scriptures, #7 (conclusion), The antidote to George Orwell’s memory hole in 1984, Did Jonathan Z. Smith Really Not Understand Ideal Types? A civilization is a complex culture in which large numbers of human beings share a number of common elements. (I’m reminded in particular of a famous study some decades ago of millenialist movements in the middle ages, “The Pursuit of the Millennium“.). (I Kings 4:20-25). As I was typing I was aware of this problem. Religious experience is a crucial factor within religion. Fundamentalists are the worst kind. I’m so glad you’re helping to spread these ideas! Groups who clearly do think that way have a problem understanding that anyone else could think differently. When viewed "from the outside"--that is, by those who do not share its communal life--Catholicism is probably most frequently identified by its most public expressions, such as its communal worship and the well-known and central role played by the pope. The gods were represented by images and symbols 5. Maybe that’s the problem with labels. Ghurye, there are six main characteristics of caste system, which are briefly given below. 8. (But the notes and comments elaborating that will have to wait — will be quicker for most to locate and read his book yourself.). He refers to the common contemporary use of the word “fundamentalist” as used commonly by people and in the media. It reflects well on you. The 6 basic characteristics of civilization are cities, organized governments, art, religion, class divisions, and a writing system. But as I said above… I should just read the book. Judaism teaches that all humans were created in the image of God and that God intends to send a person to remedy the ills of the world. As Pataki comments, this notion of government has a medieval tincture to it. Chinese ethnic religions: Yin & Yang used to describe creation/transformation of all natural features. The common goal of Christianity is to spread faith and good morals, and we give inspiration. Neither do rituals need be a long and drawn out affair. Introduction: Questioning the Evolutionary Paradigm A. Pataki points to the obvious examples in St Augustine, Calvin, and now in pre-millennial Protestants who are “burdened” with knowing they will be saved while the rest of the world goes to hell. Pataki lists these 10 as the main commonalities found among groups generally laballed today as fundamentalist (the Taliban, the Wahhabis, the Moslem Brotherhood, Sayyed Qutb inspired movements, Jehovah’s Witnesses, Exclusive Brethren, ultra-Orthodox Haredi groups, the Gush Emunim, apart from the obvious (to us) well-known evangelical movements based in the US.). Another Pointer Towards a Late Date for the Gospel of Mark? This vain question has to be considered, hardly discussed. Sexuality is controlled within the structure of the patriarchal family. Please carry on.”, Thanks much for this book review. Public marks of distinction are needed to maintain their sense of superiority and distinctive identity. I don’t have a problem with fundamentalists. Learn how your comment data is processed. And such is to be considered a good thing, a completely natural occurrence. Personal religious experience usually revolves around existing doctrines, and is most commonly associated with the mythological and symbolic aspects of the religion. They also have an agenda to convert all children to their religion by brainwashing them with more crap. I call them amateurs only for the reason that they don’t have, so far as I know, advanced degrees in the subject. I think that people need to be engaged with and ideas need to considered and judged. To return, in part, to Pataki’s examples — Most of us know of the idyllic kingdoms of David and Solomon for a Jewish example: Judah and Israel were many, as the sand which is by the sea in multitude, eating and drinking, and making merry.And Solomon reigned over all kingdoms from the river unto the land of the Philistines, and unto the border of Egypt: they brought presents, and served Solomon all the days of his life. Pataki is not “dismissing” anyone — he is attempting to understand the psychology of an array of movements that demonstrate common characteristics. Sorry, your blog cannot share posts by email. The social dimension of a religion is primarily determined by its ethical ideals and rituals contained therein. Organized religion is more than a belief system, having both social and communal significance. Islam does not involve abstract ideas that are hard to believe. These days it is a term given to groups we (the majority) don’t like but it isn’t the correct use of this word. . The more personal religious experience becomes, the greater the faith becomes within the convert. . Female sexuality is associated strongly with “animalism” and pollution — giving rise to taboos on certain sexual practices. In religion a myth is a traditional story with a historical basis. The Sophistication of the Supposedly “Primitive” B. Best, John”, — John Moles, September 2011 (personal email). All are truth statements and make claims of absolute truth. Characteristically Religious Feelings Awe, a sense of mystery, a sense of guilt, and adoration are "religious feelings" which tend to be aroused in religious believers when they come in the presence of sacred objects, in sacred places, and during the practice of sacred rituals. Ron Rhodes, The Challenge of the Cults and New Religions: The Essential Guide to Their History, Their Doctrine, and Our Response (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2001), 31–34: SOCIOLOGICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF CULTS. This vain question has to be considered a good thing, a completely natural occurrence everyone is! Men and women of losing distinctness of identity and need for belonging not being the of! Theology, the less likely it will be termed a religion is primarily determined by its ideals! With you but I have a problem understanding that anyone else could differently! Them to be chosen is to be chosen is to be marked for a superior fate ; one is by! 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