Religion - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 246 pages of information about Religion.
This section contains 6,024 words
(approx. 21 pages at 300 words per page)
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The Notions of Religion and Religious Thought

The attempt to define the phenomenon of religion and religious thought (and thereby also specify the forms of various religions and their processes of thinking) is a modern Western project—and one with many critics. It often combines attempts to map out a sphere of human life in a reasonably objective fashion with a desire to improve human life, which usually means to make human affairs more rational. The treatment of Chinese religion, a notoriously messy phenomenon or set of phenomena, exemplifies most that is bad and good in the project.

One is, however, interested in only one facet ofthat treatment, and one can begin this investigation byturning to Clifford Geertz's (1973) sophisticated and immensely influential account (or definition) of religion. For him a religion is: "(1) a system of symbols which acts to (2) establish powerful, pervasive, and long-lasting moods and motivations in...

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This section contains 6,024 words
(approx. 21 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Religion Encyclopedia Article
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Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Religion from Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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