Essay on Positive and Negative Effects of Religion on Society

Published: 2021-06-23
918 words
4 pages
8 min to read
University of Richmond
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True religions inculcate the need to coexist in harmony with creation. Man being the ultimate creation of God is tasked with safeguarding and exploiting in a perpetual manner all that is created by God. This is in line with the modern environmental concerns such as climate change and global warming. Religion creates a foundation for environmental activism, awareness, and conservation. The protection of the environment is a modern global issue which can be addressed by considering too the religious background and implications (Singh Ji, 2004).

Religions advocate for the adherence to human rights. Religions protect the right to life, freedom of movement and freedom of speech amongst many others. This promotes justice and equality in society. Religious observance of such rights also acts as a source of constitutional law. The existence of the law that is acceptable and deemed fair and humane promotes social integration.

Religion has often been used to instill people with fear. The concept of sin, punishment, and hell makes people live scared. Human beings are naturally afraid of condemnation. Religion offers a strict path towards redemption and those who often stray from this path are left scared, guilt-ridden and ostracized. Worry and anxiety follow especially because of the apparent omnipotence and omnipresence of God or other religious deities. Religion seems to demand perfection and nothing less, putting a lot of strain on people who have a tough time living and adhering to their religion. (Archon, 2016)

Amongst the greatest problems with religions is the demonization of other religions by a particular religion. The debate as to which religion is true, greater, older, grander or better than the other cause a lot of schism between people. This causes prejudice and for religions to seclude themselves because they are better or deemed lesser than others. It is often so much that friendships and romantic relationships are prohibited between people of different religions.

At the heart of several human conflicts such as wars, religion has been at the center of it. During the Crusades for Jerusalem, the Holocaust, and several others, religion has motivated men to do atrocities. Hatred has been sowed against the backdrop of religion, such that modern threats such as Muslim extremism sees rogue Imams use religion to encourage and condone terrorism.

Religion often sometimes tend to undermine scientific principles and approaches. Religion is mostly dogmatic and very unlikely to change. It resists outside interference and cannot go beyond its doctrines. Such reasonable principles like birth-control and family planning have been met by stiff resistance from religions. Women too have long been suppressed and undermined by religion. Before modern times, they were only seen as people who could take care of the home and were not included in decision-making based primarily on religious doctrines.

Is religion any good? Yes, it is.

Whether it has been used and twisted for violent purposes or not, it is still and should always be a fundamental part of the human social dynamic. Even upon most cases when religion is invoked to cause conflict, the underlying reason has always been for geo-political domination (Culliford, 2014). People need inspiration and motivation. Institutions need ethical foundations and moral guidelines. Religion has a lot to offer the society in terms of hope, well-being and the pursuit of liberation.

However, despite its apparent importance as a tool for social harmony and order, religion, and its importance is slowly being washed away. The modern society is too caught up in capitalism and its cause for oneself to look back and reflect. More and more people are being disillusioned by the idea of a religion; the existence of God. Never before since the inception of religion, has for example, God, been more denied than in this current age. Lack of religious leadership or commitment to the faith of a religion or simply the pressures of modern life have put a great toll on religion.

A lot of care though has to be invested into the religion which one subscribes to. In the modern world, peoples greed has grown and religion has not been spared as an avenue through which people try to enrich themselves. People have been and are still being exploited by certain religions. People suffer blindly in the guise of a promised redemption, leading to their own misery.

There are various reasons mentioned above that support the thought of the good and necessity of religion. Sometimes, religion isnt necessarily the problem, but the problem comes from the very people who practice the religion. Those who use it as a means to gain or as a means to an end. Values and virtues that various religions preach and practice if put in place by their adherents, would contribute to the world being a much, much better place. The good of religion would then never be in question.


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