This week we were introduced to the ways in which religion and culture are interlinked, before moving onto an in depth look at “Unchurched Spirituality”. I found this very interesting and despite my previously mentioned shortcomings regarding religion I felt this was broached in a very forward and factual way without any prejudice or strong bias.
The issue of how religion impacts on culture and social issues is one that has both interested and irritated me in my own life. I have had a lot of my own thoughts on the subject and felt that some of these were echoed in the lecture; for example religion’s advertisement of their own altruistic tendencies in order to entice people in or the villainisation of religious people based on the acts of extremists. It was very interesting to look at such beliefs and stances from an objective educational standpoint and it is something I look forward to investigating further.
I thoroughly enjoyed learning about Marxism and felt that I resonated with a lot of what he believed so am planning on looking more into him and his theories in my spare time. And whilst I may not agree with the theories and beliefs of Weber, Lincoln or others it is important to develop our bank of academics for backing up of points in an exam.
The final topic we looked at today was Unchurched Spiritualisation. This was interesting as I had noticed a lot of what was mentioned in the content, e.g. the uprising of fad new age spiritualities or the start up of new ‘modern’ religions, in day to day life but wasn’t aware there was a name for this movement. While some of these seem slightly extreme it does seem in the whole a positive step in the right direction to modernise the traditional (and possibly outdated) customs of religion.