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University Degree: Religion in Society

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    Discuss Kohlberg's theory of Moral Development, use psychological evidence and refer to at least one other theory in your answer.

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    He gave them a moral dilemma and questions designed by Heinz. Heinz's story stated that a man's wife was suffering from a rare illness, her only chance of survival was this one particular type of drug that the man could not afford and the chemist would not let him have it cheaper or let him pay for it in instalments. The questions were on whether the man should steal the drug for his wife, whether the man should steal it if it was for a stranger, is it against the law to steal it and does that make it morally wrong.

    • Word count: 1057
  2. In modern Western societies, God is dead. Is this correct?

    than 'God has died' (which would suggest some sort of event of dying). Those two simple facts would suggest that what he tries to show, is that it is rather the society that is important here than a God himself. Generally speaking, he points out that the modern society is no longer something that the idea of God or his morality could survive in. That is the point where sociologists' meaning of this phrase has its roots in. They ask whether our society is still religious in the traditional sense or maybe there is something new going on in area of our beliefs.

    • Word count: 1374
  3. Religion and Systems in Australia

    These statistics are explained in the article by Michael Gilchrist which states that '...only 64 percent of those under 15 at the time of the 1996 Census who were identified as Catholic (presumably by their parents) still described themselves as Catholic ten years later. And most of these are graduates of the Catholic education system'2. The reason for increases in secularism can therefore be seen as a product of a background of gradual trans-national changes in social values and attitudes of modern society; highlighted by the most significant growth being 'among the younger age categories'3 who are more likely to embrace alternatives to traditional, institutional religion (which may perhaps be seen as constricting to these new values and attitudes).

    • Word count: 1586
  4. Do Hindus believe in one God and one goal in life

    or Parameshwara (the supreme Lord). In the Hindu scriptures (the four Vedas or the Baghavada Gita) celestial entities are referred as Devas, "the shining ones", which translates into "Gods". Inspired sages known as rishis heard the verses of the Veda (truth) directly from the Gods. Each of these religious poems usually addresses one of the Vedic Gods or Goddesses each of whom represents natural forces such as the sun, the moon, fire, water, the heavens, the earth, the dawn and the wind. The Gods more often mentioned, each receiving more then 200 hymns are Agni (fire)

    • Word count: 1501
  5. Is the influence of religion in western society declining? Can we reasonably measure its decline? If it is declining, what is replacing it?

    In the 1960s and 70s, the idea of secularisation was spreading in Australia (Bouma, 1992 p. 164). "In current usage, the term secularisation has become synonymous with religious decline - decline in church attendance, decline in religious influence and decline in personal faith" (Bouma, 1992 p. 160). Churches are empty, the numbers of candidates for the priesthood decrease, and the strong social role religion once had seems to be lost (Bouma, 1992 p. 162). A decline in religious orientation can also be observed on the individual level, alone with a weakening of belief and a lessening of religious practice (Bouma, 1992 p.

    • Word count: 1849
  6. Church of Women by Dorothy Hodgson

    Hodgson draws on interviews with individual women and discussions with church officials to answer these questions. First, Maasai women have always had a strong spirituality, and the church provided them with an outlet for its expression. Hodgson notes that historically, Maasai women have had significant powers in the religious and/ or spiritual domain. They are believed to be more spiritual than men, which is manifest in their constant prayers. They have a special relationship with Eng'ai, the most important Maasai deity, who, like Maasai women, is responsible for creating and supporting life. Through their relationship with Eng'ai, women protect and ensure the prosperity of their families and herds and serve as the primary guardians of the Maasai moral order.

    • Word count: 1517
  7. En qu se basan las creencias espirituales?

    ende muchas creencias y para que estas perduren y sean olvidadas, necesitan de alg�n tipo de respaldo en el cual puedan apoyarse y justificarse. Las bases de las creencias muchas veces pueden tener or�genes desde mi punto de vista irracional por su tendencia espiritual, es decir que se originan de explicaciones m�ticas, suposiciones, relatos, no necesariamente como una forma de explicar como se supone que trabajaba el mito en la antigua Grecia, sino como formas de expresar, pero al fin y al cabo sin soporte ya que no tienen raz�n de ser ni comprobaci�n practica, y tal vez nunca de

    • Word count: 1544
  8. According to secularization theory what should happen to religion as society undergoes modernization?

    in cultural experiences at all levels - a push, whether ill-defined or conscious, toward some sort of ultimacy and transcendence that will provide norms and power for the rest of life. When more or less distinct patterns of behaviour are built around this depth dimension in a culture, this structure constitutes religion in its historically recognizable form. Religion is the organization of life around the depth dimensions of experience - varied in form, completeness, and clarity in accordance with the environing culture.'

    • Word count: 1996
  9. With reference to at least two NRMs you have visited, examine the ways in which they secure allegiance from their followers.

    Social taboos are held very srtictly by the Jehovah's Witnesses but the pro active approach to discipline is in marked contrast to the ISCKON religion who also have social taboos that contrast with wider society. The ISCKON approach to discipline from the beggining of the religions move to the west has been of tolerence and accomodation, in line the Wallis typology the ISCKON religion would be a world accomodating religion. ISCKON members where described to us as being encouraged to follow the rules of the organisation but that no formal mechanism exists by which a member can be expelled.

    • Word count: 1188
  10. "A Dignified Death"

    This is also perhaps reflected in the subjects of the story itself, two GP's, I feel that this story is particularly suited to the readership of the Guardian as it's high concentration of professional readers will no doubt include a great deal of medical staff, this ensures that the readers can relate to the story and place themselves easily in the position of the writer, this I feel will have a greater effect on the readers of the guardian than it would with perhaps a tabloid newspaper.

    • Word count: 1203
  11. The good sides of patriotism.

    Also he thinks that patriotism is the exclusive desire for the well being of one's own people (103). It breaks down the moral principles by requiring special duties toward our own citizens. Moreover, Tolstoy argues that patriotism is incompatible with the fundamental nature of morality and so it must be condemned by any person who aspires to live a moral life (104). Secondly, today leaders and rulers use it to attain their ambitions. Tolstoy implies that patriotism is produced by the public relation efforts of the government and those who benefit from it (104).

    • Word count: 1285
  12. What is morality, and within morality what can be considered fact or merely an opinion.

    Morality can be described in two ways; either to label Morality using a 'descriptive definition', or using a 'normative definition'. The argument over which description should be considered the intellectual paradigm is as yet unresolved, and gives us an indication of the arguments that will put forward on the same basis' to question whether there are moral facts. 'Descriptive Morality' refers to the different interpretations of what morality is by each society. In this case morality is a changing concept; i.e.

    • Word count: 1708
  13. Do questions like Why should I be moral? or Why shouldnt I be selfish? have definitive answers as do some questions in other Areas of Knowledge? Does having a definitive answer make a question more or less important?

    It is impossible to find a definitive answer because many different reasons are legitimate. There is no difference in significance between the two questions; the difference is merely what areas of knowledge the question is centered upon. The answer to questions such as "Why should I be moral?" or "Why shouldn't I be selfish?" comes from perception and emotion. Perception can differ vastly from continent to continent and is also different between people. The concept of beating children for example is not commonly accepted in North America, North Americans believe that beating children is a form of child abuse, can cause traumatic childhood experiences, and is immoral.

    • Word count: 1620
  14. I would like to begin my evaluation of moral relativism by further exploring the concept. The primary ideas of moral relativism are that moral differences between societies around the world should be accepted

    The approach to determining a method of comparison can be divided into two large schools of thoughts: moral relativism, and moral absolutism (Hinman, 2005). I would like to begin my evaluation of moral relativism by further exploring the concept. The primary ideas of moral relativism are that moral differences between societies around the world should be accepted and tolerated as being unique onto their own (Hinman, 2005). Moral relativism is the stance that judgement between different morals cannot be made.

    • Word count: 1708
  15. Euthanasia: The Right to Die

    Euthanasia should be legalized in Canada because it relieves the unnecessary pain and suffering of patients and their families. Within the last twenty years, euthanasia and assisted suicide has been prominent in the headlines (Guy, 1993). This has given rise to discussions between family members having to make difficult decisions, to professionals making life and death decisions, and leaders giving opinions and guidance on the moral, ethical, and religious aspects of euthanasia. Due to advances in medical treatment, people are now able to live longer.

    • Word count: 1290
  16. What is meant by euthanasia?

    When it is a doctor who helps another person to kill themselves it is called "physician assisted suicide." * Euthanasia by Action: Intentionally causing a person's death by performing an action such as by giving a lethal injection. * Euthanasia By Omission: Intentionally causing death by not providing necessary and ordinary care Indirect euthanasia means the involvement of a clinician (e.g. physician, clinical nurse practitioner, and pharmacist) as an agent who participates only by providing the means for a patient to induce his/her own death. This could mean writing or filling a prescription for medications in a quantity large enough to cause death when taken by the patient.

    • Word count: 1383
  17. Why Did Durkheim argue that suicide was inversely related to the degree of integration in society? Durkheim believed that the reason things like suicide happens is because of his famous phrase

    Another part of Egotistic suicide is that single people have a higher rate of suicide than those in families. Altrustic suicide The example Durkheim uses for this type of suicide is the societies that stress the responsibility of the individual to society. He talks about the Hindu widow of a deceased man who killed herself according to customs in her religion. Anomic suicide This type of suicide deals with how the suicide rates rose in times of prosperity and in times of poverty.

    • Word count: 1729
  18. Outline and critically discuss the main argument of Durkheim's Suicide. In what sense is this work distinctively sociological? Durkheim figured out and

    People are attached to think for the interests of society as a whole. They share similar values, similar thoughts, thus stronger conscience collective (Lukes, S. 1973). In contrast, organic solidarity refers to modern societies that based on the division of labour which are predominant in more advanced societies. These societies are relatively complex, highly differentiated with larger population. Societies are much more interdependent, the social bonds are relatively strong and with higher material and moral density. The law using to rule these societies, restitutive law, is really helping in the restoration of relationship.

    • Word count: 1745
  19. In the article "The Right to Die", Patrick Nowell-Smith addresses the moral issue of euthanasia.

    It is appropriate to begin this summary with a brief understanding of these definitions. First, the practical moral issue surrounding euthanasia, is concerned with whether it is morally permissible for a person to end the life of another person who chooses to die. Active euthanasia is deemed the 'killing' of a person, however, if you let them die, it is referred to as passive euthanasia. Voluntary euthanasia is "at the request or consent of the person(Nowell-Smith,p32)" and involuntary, then refers to the loss or lack of consent. Nowell-Smith puts forward the issue of whether or not a person holds the right to die when he or she want and how he or she want to, especially when suffering from a disease and being kept alive by the 'inhumane' processes of modern medicine.

    • Word count: 1378
  20. The life and works of Emile Durkheim

    a conservative and a socialist" (cited in Lukes 1977) The introduction of this book finishes with Durkheim's key concepts (class consciousness, division of labour, conscious collective, representation collectives...) Lukes then introduces us with Durkheim's background, his childhood. David Emile Durkheim was born on 15 April 1858 at Epinal, the capital town of Vosges, in Lorraine. His father Moise Durkheim was a rabbi of Epinal since 1830. His mother, Melanie grew up in a close-knit orthodox Jewish family. Durkheim however like his father, grandfather, great grandfather...

    • Word count: 1434
  21. Demonstrate that you can think sociologically about any one topic analysed by sociologists.

    He concluded that the society had a part in affecting the individual and the act of suicide. Durkheim according to the concept of social solidarity believed that there were two types of bonds in society one being social integration and the other social regulation. Individuals who were integrated soundly into society and who lived by social norms were less likely to commit suicide. Durkheim from these conclusions identified four types of suicide. Firstly egotistic suicide is due to a low integration in society. This is when an individual is secluded from the outside world. Where the individual has lost or broken their ties with society.

    • Word count: 1141
  22. What does it mean to say that moral judgements are subjective? Is the claim plausible?

    For example, in some cultures it was seen as moral to kill yourself if your husband died. Nowadays however suicide in any form is seen as immoral. How can two contradictory ideas concerning morality be true if morality was indeed objective? Here is an argument to show that this is not possible. Premise 1 Morality is objective Premise 2 In Culture X suicide is objectively immoral Premise 3 In Culture Y suicide is objectively moral Conclusion 1: Suicide is objectively moral Conclusion 2: Suicide is objectively immoral The conclusions obviously contradict each other and therefore must be false.

    • Word count: 1679
  23. In Sidney Hook's, "In Defense of Voluntary Euthanasia," the author explains why he thinks Euthanasia should be allowed.

    Right away he establishes the rhetorical appeal of ethos. Hook then points out how he had had to endure violent and painful hiccups, for several day and nights. These hiccups prevented him from digesting food and half of his body became paralyzed. In this first paragraph the author seems to be just explaining all the pain and misery he endured during the worst times of his health. This informs the audience of the author's background. He sates how at one point his heart stopped pumping, and he lost consciousness.

    • Word count: 1217
  24. Can winning the lottery promote suicidal tendencies?

    However those who have won the lottery are in a group totally different from others. The results are tragic and unnecessary. The newly rich take their own lives for a plethora of reasons, although none of these reasons should actually constitute an attempt at suicide. What is it then, that brings a new millionaire to commit suicide? What factors lead to suicidal tendencies on the part of the lottery winner? The enigma of lottery winner suicide is multidimensional. The major theories on suicide can be categorised into three fundamental causes.

    • Word count: 1456
  25. Universal Law Calls for the Dismissal of Politics: An Analysis of Kant's Philosophy on the Morals And It's Correlation to his Political Theories

    Kant addressed all three of these complex and controversial issues with the idea of a Universal Law, which connected his moral theories to his political ones. Immanuel Kant was born in K�nigsberg, Germany, on April 22, 1724. He began his college education at Fredericaianum College, studying the classics, but later developed an obsession for mathematics and physics, which he studied at the University of K�nigsberg. After he acquired his doctorate, he became a professor at the university, where he taught science and mathematics for fifteen years. However, as his career developed, he acquired a desire to learn and teach philosophy.

    • Word count: 1995

Conclusion analysis

Good conclusions usually refer back to the question or title and address it directly - for example by using key words from the title.
How well do you think these conclusions address the title or question? Answering these questions should help you find out.

  1. Do they use key words from the title or question?
  2. Do they answer the question directly?
  3. Can you work out the question or title just by reading the conclusion?
  • Examine the definition of moral panic and then go on to discuss an example in order to demonstrate its cycle and characteristics.

    "In conclusion, moral panics are not a new phenomenon; they tend to arise in periods of social upheaval and change. The path of a panic can take one of two directions; it can quickly die down and is more or less forgotten to a great degree or can have more serious and lasting implications such as new legislation and changes in social policy. Society plays their part, encouraged by the press - people who are in the midst of a moral panic clamour for any available news and basically believe anything they are told. Moral panics feed off guilt that is spread by contagion to make people feel more comfortable by blaming another group for their deviances."

  • Evaluate Durkheim's claim that interpersonal forces control human behaviour. Illustrate your answer with reference to either his study of suicide or religion.

    "Durkheim's theory has some advantages over other theories on the role of interpersonal forces controlling human behaviour, as Suicide was the first systematic application of the sociological method to a social phenomenon. While attacked by interpretists for the unreliability of official statistics on suicide, few have substantially attacked his theoretical conclusions. Hence, Durkheim's work provides a valuable tool to the better understanding of the mechanisms, both personal and societal, behind human behaviour."

  • Assess the future relevance of liberal Protestant theological traditions in the context of World Christianity.

    "In conclusion, liberal Protestantism has probably reached the extent of its influence in the West as discrete denomination. It is beset by neo-orthodox critics and floundering under its automatic connection to liberal politics. However, many of its beliefs remain attractive to modern Christians and have been absorbed into other denominations of Christianity. As the politics and socioeconomic conditions in Africa and Asia continue to improve, it is possible, even likely that the social/cultural factor examined previously will make liberal Christianity in some form more attractive in these areas. To answer the title question, the future relevance of liberal Christianity will be significant if subtle, if it manages to remake itself into a cohesive theological entity and divide itself from politics. Otherwise it will play an increasingly insignificant role on the world stage. Bibliogaphy Sanneh, Lamin., Whose religion is Christianity?: the gospel beyond the West (Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, September 2003) page 22. McGrath, Alistair., Christian Theology (Blackwell Publishing 2007) Page 82"

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