RLG100Y1 Lecture Notes - Nationalization, New Religious Movement

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Published on 21 Apr 2013
School
UTSG
Department
Religion
Course
RLG100Y1
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RLG309 Reading #2- Religion- Jeff Haynes
- What are the political consequences of the involvement of religion in politics?
- At the beginning of the 21st century, there are few regions of the world where religion is not a
factor in political conflict.
Global Context
- Distinguish between religion at the individual and group levels. Politics concerned with religion
at group level. Consequences for the value system .
The Developing World
- It was widely believed that as countries developed, they would secularize.
- Developing countries have many different ways of governing themselves
- Colonialism supported secular states, and in the developing countries attempt to gain
independence from colonization, they cast out secular politics and turned to religion.
- Many post-colonial governments expanded state power, and equated secularization with
modernization. However this modernization produced feelings of alienation in many people, who
turned to their religious communities, using religion to achieve socio-political goals.
- Religion has re-emerged into the public arena when people lose faith in secular politicians.
The West
- Secularization main socio-political trend in the West
- Religious privatization
- Increase in various forms of spirituality and religiosity, and churches are more openly willing to
articulate their views on socio-political issues.
- Are people becoming more privately religious as societies are collectively becoming more
secular? Three arguments:
o Religion is replacing secular ideologies that have lost popular appeal
o The popularity of religion is cyclical
o New religious movements are responses to the impact of (post)modernity.
Conclusion
- Recent political impact of religion: the mass population is not especially religious, religious
actors have sought a new public role. Religion tries to de-privatize itself, aiming to be a
significant factor in socio-political debates.
- Seems likely religion will continue to play a role in global politics
- Neglecting religion in analyses of contemporary politics is wrong.

Document Summary

At the beginning of the 21st century, there are few regions of the world where religion is not a factor in political conflict. Distinguish between religion at the individual and group levels. It was widely believed that as countries developed, they would secularize. Developing countries have many different ways of governing themselves. Colonialism supported secular states, and in the developing countries attempt to gain independence from colonization, they cast out secular politics and turned to religion. Many post-colonial governments expanded state power, and equated secularization with modernization. However this modernization produced feelings of alienation in many people, who turned to their religious communities, using religion to achieve socio-political goals. Religion has re-emerged into the public arena when people lose faith in secular politicians. Secularization main socio-political trend in the west. Increase in various forms of spirituality and religiosity, and churches are more openly willing to articulate their views on socio-political issues.