RELIGST 2QQ3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Net., Social Cost
Course CodeRELIGST 2QQ3
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• Religious life is foreign, especially for the Western religions (Christianity, Judaism, Islam).
Religion Is ...
• Religion is:
• Strange to our ordinary life.
• Different than cults.
• A paradox.
o Many people think of religion as a refuge for the weak; something that weak people are drawn
• Religion tells people that there is hope, that they are loved.
• Offers sense of hope - heaven, paradise.
• "Religion is for people who cannot handle life; those who cannot think for
• Considered a crutch that the weak use to feel better about themselves.
o God expects you to give all of yourself to the divine; get rid of your own ego; submit your will.
• Moments of crisis.
• Surrender to Divine.
• Support system.
• Let our lives remain the same.
• You don't have to make a lot of changes in your lives to accept this.
• E.g. You don't have to change your shopping habits for God.
• We want to be proud of ourselves; have personal ambitions/accomplishments.
• When we get overwhelmed, we pray for help.
• Of being an outsider.
• We want to be accepted and understood.
• If we go against the flow, we feel like we may be putting our lives and images at risk.
• Financial security.
• Ambition is considered more important/attractive (in a partner) than being compassionate or well
rounded in the arts/sciences.
• Ambition connects our sense of our own image with our financial concerns for the future.
• Want to come off as prepared and ambitious.
• We enjoy feeling unique and like an individual, however as a culture, we don't like to stray too far from
the norm (in terms of being understood).
• There is a social cost to being too different.
• We are made happy by not having to worry about the future.
• I.e. "Will I be able to keep my house?"
• Dread has replaced enthusiasm in many aspects of our lives.
o Things feel out of control -> Need to exert more control, but that causes more stress/pressure.
o Always on the verge of being nervous of what is expected of us.
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