Secularization thesis of religion

It is widely accepted by social scientists that the dominant trend in modern religion is secularization.

Secularization Essay: Useful Essay on Secularization

Casanova also describes this as the theory of "privatization" of religion, which he partially criticizes. Again, it was very much European.

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Christianity need not be privatised The collapse of European Christendom has left many Western Christians feeling shell-shocked. In addition, as Weber stated, as rationalization proceeds both in religion and in other institutional spheres, the tension between religion and other spheres grow.

But the Bible is packed with examples of bad religion — religion that is idolatrous, hypocritical, exploitative, or oppressive Exodus 32; Isaiah 44; Matthew 23; Luke Even in Europe, the heartland of secularisation, religion refused to do the decent thing and wilt away without a fuss.

No society has more mass entertainment than the United States, but it does not appear to have led Secularization thesis of religion any noticeable decline in church attendance.

The abstract for the journal article The Future of Secularism: Moreover, once we adopt a global perspective, things look even healthier. Much of the evidence that is given is focused on the Christian religion in Britain.

Sociology of Religion- Approaches to Secularization Essay

In the year1. This could be said to show a declining importance of religious morals and beliefs in people's lives. Some of these writers lamented the passing of traditional religion, whilst others celebrated it, but all assumed that the forces of modernity would usher in a new secular world.

Religion in sociological perspective Vol. The supernatural is mentioned in this meaning so it excludes religions that do not believe in the supernatural, Buddhism being an example of this. Therefore, the reason for a decline in church attendance may be that there is less social pressure to attend rather than a decline in religious beliefs.

The process indicates the decline in the religious permeation of other social institutions. A family of theories drew on classical sociological theory. The disapproval of the church regarding divorce, abortions, homosexuality, contraception and other social issues seems not to have had an impact on people's behaviour.

It emphasizes that religion should be delimited to the private sphere of individual and family life. Parameters of Faith in the Modern World.

Other institutions have emerged to take over the roles that the church once played, for example the welfare state now cares for the disadvantaged groups in society. And although it rarely registered with the press, the big story in twentieth-century Christianity was Pentecostalism, which from the humblest of beginnings in the first decade of the century grew explosively to become a worldwide movement of perhaps a quarter of a billion people.

The substantive definition sees religion as what it is rather than what it does. Rutgers University Press, Max Weber credits Calvinism and the emergence of the Protestant ethic as being a major development in the rationalization of the world—and secularization is part and parcel of that rationalization.

The church may have lost control of various spheres of society, but Christians still participate fully in civil society and in the public debates of democratic societies. Statistics are used to back up the secularization theory. During the s secularization extended into popular culture and mass public education ceased to be under Protestant cultural influence.


In sixteenth-century Europe, the church was at the heart of every community and religion was a ubiquitous presence. But it is now clear that churches and other religious organisations can thrive in highly industrialised and rationalised societies.

The Islamic revolution in Iran led by Ayatollah Khomeini resulted in the re-implantation of Islam into all social spheres. The functional definition relates to the purposes of religion - what it does.

Iain Murray, Evangelicalism Divided, Edinburgh: The world today, with some exceptions…is as furiously religious as it ever was, and in some places more so than ever. There was a kind of implicit optimism that the way that European society is developing is at the cutting edge of social evolution.

The Moral Majority organization in the US, with a membership of 4 million members, was one of the largest conservative lobby groups in the country nd managed to influence on many political agendas.Evaluate the secularization thesis Evaluate the secularization thesis.


Secularization as defined in the Oxford dictionary of Sociology (Marshall G, ) is the process whereby, especially in modern industrial societies, religious beliefs, practices, and institutions lose social significance.

Secularization is a term used by sociologists to refer to a process by which the overarching and transcendent religious system of old is reduced in modern functionally differentiated societies to a subsystem alongside other subsystems, losing in this process its.

Proponents of the secularization thesis argue that a change in society has occurred due to modernity and this social change has led to a change in religion resulting in secularization.

Pre-modernity, religion namely Christianity was a dominant force and it pervaded all parts of society. From the beginning of the world there has been no region, no city, in short, no household that could do without the same time, I do not say, as Cicero did, that errors disappear with the lapse of time, and that religion grows and becomes better each day.

Secularization does not imply the disappearance of religion as such but is the process whereby religious thinking, practices and institutions lose their significance for the operation of the social system. Secularization is a cultural transition in which religious values are gradually replaced with nonreligious values.

In the process, religious figureheads such as church leaders lose .

Secularization thesis of religion
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