RELIGST 3AR3 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Orthopraxy, Secularism, General Order

98 views5 pages
Today: Religion
I. Early theorists and their definitions: Karl Marx, Sigmund Freud, Max Weber
- Karl Marx (1818-1883):
- Ma akes eligio, eligio does ot ake Ma p. 3
- ‘eligio is the opiu of the people p. 3
- Aodig to Ma, eligio as eeded to keep people otiated o goig. It akes
them feel good in times that are not good; something that aids us in getting by. It
actually blinds us on the idea of capitalism, on all the inequities and hardship on lives.
‘eligio ist aout eligio, ut oe aout opig ith the ijusties.
- Religion is a human product, and the religion is NOT about beliefs, but more about the
troubling realism that occurs.
- Sigmund Freud (1856-1939):
- Religion endures due to our psychological need to feel protected from our fears.
- Max Weber (1864-1920):
- stud the oditios ad effets, ot essee, of a patiula tpe of soial ehaio…
an understanding of this behavior can only be achieved from the viewpoint of the
subjective epeiees, ideas, ad puposes of the idiiduals oeed. p.5
- ‘eligio does diffeet thigs fo diffeet people. Its ot olletie, pe sa, it is oe
an individual thing.
- Wee doest ie it like Ma ad Feud; he eliees that e should focus on the
people who are religious.
II. Foundational definition of religion for anthropology: E.B Tylor, James, Frazer, William James,
Emile Durkheim, Clifford Geertz
1. E.B Tylor (1832-1917):
- Belief in spiritual beings
- All this information coming from missionaries
- Tlo: eligio is haateized  spiitual eigs; it ephasizes elief ad hat is i
your heart. Every religion has their own form of spirituality.
- Hes a eolutioist ad thee should e soethig like cultural evolution)
- Animism (the earliest, unevolved) -> polytheism (pagans; Hindus) -> monotheism
(Christianity or Islam)
- Maybe religion is not always marked by belief, or a habit/routine.
find more resources at
find more resources at
Unlock document

This preview shows pages 1-2 of the document.
Unlock all 5 pages and 3 million more documents.

Already have an account? Log in
2. James Frazer (1854-1941):
- …powers superior to man which are believed to direct and control the course of nature
ad of hua life
- Magic -> religion -> science
- As cultures evolve, the religions also evolve. From magic and the unevolved to the most
evolved which is science.
3. William James (1842-1910)
- the feelings, acts and experiences of individual men in their solitude, so far as they
apprehend themselves to stand in relation to whatever they may consider the diie
(p. 7)
- Our feelings or religiosity may be different when we are by ourselves. In other words,
the way we act as individuals in relation to a religion or beliefs MAY differ from as a
olletie soiet. Idiidual epeiee is ephasized ith Jaes thoughts.
4. Emile Durkheim (1858-1917)
- [‘eligio] uified set of eliefs ad P‘ACTICE“ elatie to saed thigs, that is to sa,
things set apart and forbidden beliefs and practices which unite one single moral
ouit alled a huh…
- Church = moral community (not Christianity)
- His focus: we should look at what people do AND not their belief
- Christianity = a belief system; does not matter the heritage or genealogical identity. As
long as you believe.
- Judaism = does not care about belief, or orthopraxis; its a ultual idetit
- Aodig to Dukhei, eligio oks to uite people. Its aout soethig othe tha
5. Clifford Geertz (1926-2006):
- a sste of “YMBOL“ hih ats to estalish poe, peasie, ad log-last MOODS
AND MOTIVATION [James] in men by formulating conceptions of a general order of
existence [Frazer] and clothing these conceptions with such an aura of factuality that
oods ad otiatios see uiuel ealisti
- These symbols motivate you, make you feel emotional and even act a certain way.
- For example, a cross: shows the sacrifices, to motivate you, feelings of being Christian.
III. Citiues of eligio
Definitions of religion cross culturally valid?
- Individuals? Shared?
- Religious or Secular?
- Religions are distinct from one another?
find more resources at
find more resources at
Unlock document

This preview shows pages 1-2 of the document.
Unlock all 5 pages and 3 million more documents.

Already have an account? Log in

Get OneClass Notes+

Unlimited access to class notes and textbook notes.

YearlyBest Value
75% OFF
$8 USD/m
$30 USD/m
You will be charged $96 USD upfront and auto renewed at the end of each cycle. You may cancel anytime under Payment Settings. For more information, see our Terms and Privacy.
Payments are encrypted using 256-bit SSL. Powered by Stripe.