Religion, Culture, and Communication - Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Communication
Our cultural values, which often include particular religious beliefs, shape our To develop an understanding of the relationship between culture, religion and. Moreover, the correlation between attitudes and their attitudes and beliefs can strengthen and solidify the If religious culture is the macro force responsible for . If religion is a cultural tradition, is it possible to separate religion and culture? The relation between culture and religion is an old and still on-going debate.
When religion has been used to dominate the public square, a diversity of groups non-religious and religious have risen in opposition.
Likewise, when religion has been expelled from the public domain, religious actors and interests go underground waiting for a chance to re-emerge. Sacred symbols re defining what is real The second element of religion are rituals that re-order the world according to religious principle. Our senses are portals to the spirit. Therefore, rituals function as tangible symbols of the intangible realm.
For examples of different studies that consider the public rituals of Judaism, Islam and Hinduism respectively see BeckBronner and Haider While some religious rituals are private or hidden, many are performed in public spaces or in ways that are openly accessible to wider society.
As such, they are a part of public life — which is one of the original definitions of the word politics. For religious adherents, rituals symbolise spiritual truths but they can also redefine how power can be understood in the material world.
Thomas Merton once described his experience of watching Trappist monks perform the rituals of the Catholic Mass in very political terms. The eloquence of this liturgy [communicated] one, simple, cogent, tremendous truth: These men, hidden in the anonymity of their choir and their white cowls, are doing for their land what no army, no congress, no president could ever do as such: Beyond the experience of individuals, states also seek divine blessing.
For example, over one-fifth of states today have a monarch such as a king, queen or emperor. Although monarchs differ in the extent of their powers — from figureheads controlled by parliaments to absolute rulers to variations of these — they all draw their power from some form of religious or spiritual authority. The elaborate rituals of monarchies worldwide are understood by their subjects to symbolise divine blessing for the realm and its citizens, redefining where the real power lies.
Sacred stories connecting past, present and future The third element of religion is teaching traditions based on stories of significant figures, events and ideas from the past and beliefs about the future of time itself — like a spoiler alert about the end of the world. For some religions, however, time itself is an illusion and the main focus is living in the now according to sacred ideas rather than the connection of past—present—future. These elements — interpreting the past, projecting the future, living now — are basic to the development of political ideologies also.
Therefore, sometimes religious and political groups can appeal to the same stories or ideas even though the interpretation or intent may differ significantly. In the s members of both communities appealed to one aspect of Jubilee — a tradition of debt cancellation found in the Hebrew Bible — as the basis for addressing the debt crisis facing developing nations.
Only a few years later, this sacred story was used for very different purposes by US president George W. Bush, who celebrated the invasion of Iraq by quoting a Jubilee text from the Book of Isaiah: Sacred stories, ideas and teachings from the past have a richness and power that can influence political affairs today and the aspirations we hold for tomorrow.
A community worshiping and acting together The fourth element common to most religions is the need for believers to belong to a faith community in order to practice sacred rituals and reinforce the truth of sacred stories.
Some religious traditions could be described as high demand, requiring strict adherence to rules and standards in order to maintain membership of the faith community. Other traditions are low demand, adopting a more flexible approach to the requirements for belonging faithfully to the community. The connection between religion and identity politics can have individual and international significance.
For instance, empowered by belonging to a faith community, individuals can act in ways that they might not otherwise have done in isolation. Rosa Parks, an African American woman who famously refused to obey American racial segregation laws and sparked a nation-wide civil rights movement in the s, is often lauded as a heroic individual. This may be true, but as a member of a religious community that affirmed human dignity and the divine principles of racial equality, Rosa Parks was never acting in isolation Thomas— The four elements of religion described above — the significance of gods and spirits, the power of holy rituals, the telling of sacred stories and belonging to faith communities — seem in their own ways to be a core aspect of the human condition in the twenty-first century.
Elements of culture We can approach the term culture in the same way we have considered religion. There are many proposed meanings of culture, and these vary from the simple to the complex.
While each approach has real value for understanding the social world around us, we will opt for a simple version that still gives us plenty to work with. As such, we begin with an understanding of culture as the combined effect of humanly constructed social elements that help people live together. We will explore four elements of culture, illustrating each element through individual and international political experience.
Common life practised in society The first element of culture has to do with common or shared life. While media reporting seems to constantly prioritise stories of war, conflict and controversy, it is equally the case that local, national and international society requires a remarkable degree of cooperation. How do we live together? Yet, there are other bonds that are forged at the social level as peoples of difference find ways to live together in the same space by forging common beliefs, habits and values.
It is from this practice of common life that culture often emerges. Sport provides good examples of culture as common life. Let us think about football also known as soccer. Local football clubs can be founded on distinct community identity.
For example, local Australian players from a Greek background can play for a team sponsored by the Hellenic Association. Clubs can equally represent a locality rather than a particular group. Regardless of background, at the international level all players in these clubs have a loyalty to the Australian football team. Football is the common bond — a sporting pastime but also cultural practice. Think about the way entire nations can be said to embody the activities of its national sporting heroes.
Supporters from different countries will identify their team as playing in a certain style, even if these are stereotypes and not entirely accurate: Do all South American sides use flamboyance and spontaneity? The larger point, for both individuals and nations, is the tangible power of a sporting pastime to generate common bonds from the local to the international Rees— That bond is an expression of culture. Symbols of group identity The second element of culture are symbols of identity.
The kinds of sign I am referring to are tangible reminders in modern societies of who we are as a people.
Difference Between Culture and Religion: A Proposal Requesting Response (Discussion) - PhilPapers
They include styles of architecture such as bridges or religious buildingsland or waterscapes that influence the activity of life such as in harbour citiesmonuments, flags and other identity banners, styles of clothing and habits of dress, distinctive food and drink — and so on. These signs are more than a tourist attraction, they are symbols that inform members about who they are as a group and that help the group live together cohesively.
Consider, for example, the individual and international significance of national flags as cultural symbols. The Star-Spangled Banner as the anthem of the United States of America describes the power of a national flag to inspire individual and national devotion.
The answer for Key was yes, the flag symbolising defiance and the promise of victory. Equally, persecuted communities within a country might see a national or regional flag as a symbol of oppression rather than freedom, symbolising a dominant way of life that excludes them.
In all regions of the world nationalist groups fight for autonomy or independence from a country or countries that surround them, and do so under alternative flags that represent their own cultural identity. The flag of the Canadian province of Quebec, for example, employs religious and cultural symbols reflecting its origins as a French colony in the new world. Quebec nationalists campaigning for independence from Canada have employed the flag in the promotion of French language, cultural preservation and Quebecois identity.
National separatist groups worldwide are similarly inspired by symbols of culture they are trying to preserve. Stories of our place in the world The third element of culture is the power of story.
Like the cultural use of symbols, societies need to tell stories. These may be about individuals and groups, of events in the distant and recent past, of tales of victory and defeat involving enemies and friends — and so on. Such stories are told to reaffirm, or even recreate, ideas of where that society belongs in relation to the wider world. As such, stories are performances designed to influence what we understand to be real Walter72— Sometimes cultural difference can be most starkly understood by the different stories societies tell about themselves.
In such places, national holidays can be mourned as commemorating invasion and dispossession. New Zealand offers somewhat of a contrast, with the story of the nation including the drawing up of the Treaty of Waitangi signed in between the British colonisers and the indigenous Maori tribes. Such ownership, as an attempt to uphold the sovereignty of the Maori nation swas central to the preservation of their cultural story. Sadly, this is not the history recounted by Australian indigenous nations or most Native American tribes in the United States and Canada.
Taken together, these depictions of preservation and loss illustrate the importance of language, ritual, place and tradition in the cultural story at the individual and international level. Like living organs, societies experience growth and decline, health and decay, fitness and injury.
Extending the analogy, we could say that culture is a way to measure the psychological and emotional health of society.The relationships between religion and culture
These descriptors reflect what individuals and international societies believe is a healthy culture. As such, culture involves agreement on the kind of things that are good for society and can make it flourish.
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One of the leading frontiers of culture clash worldwide involves the campaign for gender equality in areas such as education, employment, reproductive and marital rights. The story of Malala Yousafzai from northwest Pakistan reminds us of the power of one individual to inspire an international response on the vital issue of education for girls.
When Malala was 12, and inspired by her teacher father, she began to speak out for the right to education, something that was becoming increasingly restricted due to the influence of the Taliban in Pakistan. Inalthough critically wounded, Malala survived an assassination attempt at the hands of the Taliban and, on her recovery, became a brave advocate for the many millions who were being denied education due to certain cultural perceptions about girls and their place in society.
In she was co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize and dedicated her prize money to the building of a secondary school for girls in Pakistan.
While it has been important to consider each concept separately, highlighting the particular ways that religion and culture influence international relations, there are clear interlinkages between them.
Invented traditions are a central component of modern national cultures, providing a commonality of experience and promoting the unified national identity espoused by nationalism.
Expatriate and immigrant communities may continue to practice the national traditions of their home nation. In scholarly discourse[ edit ] In science, tradition is often used in the literature in order to define the relationship of an author's thoughts to that of his or her field. For Popper, each scientist who embarks on a certain research trend inherits the tradition of the scientists before them as he or she inherits their studies and any conclusions that superseded it.
It is also used in varying contexts in other fields, such as history, psychology and sociology. Social scientists and others have worked to refine the commonsense concept of tradition to make it into a useful concept for scholarly analysis. In the s and s, Edward Shils explored the concept in detail. Tradition as a concept variously defined in different disciplines should not be confused with various traditions perspectives, approaches in those disciplines.
The term is especially common in the study of American archaeology. Tradition is defined in biology as "a behavioral practice that is relatively enduring i. Groups of orangutans and chimpanzees, in particular, may display large numbers of behavioral traditions, and in chimpanzees, transfer of traditional behavior from one group to another not just within a group has been observed. Such behavioral traditions may have evolutionary significance, allowing adaptation at a faster rate than genetic change.
Problems playing this file? In the field of musicology and ethnomusicology tradition refers to the belief systems, repertoire, techniques, style and culture that is passed down through subsequent generations. Tradition in music suggests a historical context with which one can perceive distinguishable patterns.
Along with a sense of history, traditions have a fluidity that cause them to evolve and adapt over time. While both musicology and ethnomusicology are defined by being 'the scholarly study of music'  they differ in their methodology and subject of research.
It is also related to the works of Max Weber see theories of rationalityand were popularized and redefined in by Raymond Boudon in his book Action. Philosophy[ edit ] The idea of tradition is important in philosophy. Twentieth century philosophy is often divided between an 'analytic' tradition, dominant in Anglophone and Scandinavian countries, and a 'continental' tradition, dominant in German and Romance speaking Europe.
Increasingly central to continental philosophy is the project of deconstructing what its proponents, following Martin Heideggercall 'the tradition', which began with Plato and Aristotle.
In contrast, some continental philosophers - most notably, Hans-Georg Gadamer - have attempted to rehabilitate the tradition of Aristotelianism. This move has been replicated within analytic philosophy by Alasdair MacIntyre.
However, MacIntyre has himself deconstructed the idea of 'the tradition', instead posing Aristotelianism as one philosophical tradition in rivalry with others.