Critical theorists view religion as an institution that helps maintain patterns of social inequality. Many of these social scientists are known to belong to the tradition of functionalist thought. No doubt religion performs many positive roles in society and act as an integrating or unifying force in human society. Religion be when it helps in binding together members of a society. Functionalists view religion in a positive way; they see religion to play the function of maintaining harmony and social cohesion. Religion is a social institution, because it includes beliefs and practices that serve the needs of society. While some faiths might view sexuality as a taboo subject, or even as an abomination, other religions embrace and revere the human capacity for sexual expression. The study focuses on the prosperous democracies, because “levels of religious and nonreligious belief and practice, and indicators of societal health and dysfunction, have been most extensively and reliably surveyed” in them. While in other countries the dysfunction of religion has made citizens turn on their fellow citizens. Religion is assumed to be a sociobehavioral factor similar to social support and education, factors that themselves are positively associated with several health benefits, including better cognitive functioning (Stephens, Kinney, Norris, & Ritchie, 1987; Weintraub, Powell, & Whitla, 1994). lt is called dysfunctional when it promotes superstitious beliefs and ‘meaningless’ practices, (ii) A political machine is dysfunctional when it increases graft and corruption. Social scientists have analyzed religion in terms of what it does for the individual, community or society through its functions and dysfunctions. For Europe, an act of commemoration – i.e. This is my second comment. Religion and Social Dysfunction Evidence that secular democracies have lower violence and sexual crime: Two centuries ago there was little dispute over the existence of God, or the social benefits of a popular belief in a creator. Religion, on the one hand, teaches that people are born sinners. Social structures have different consequences depending on what group is affected. The diversity of religions across cultures. These include (a) giving meaning and purpose to life, (b) reinforcing social unity and stability, (c) serving as an agent of social control of behavior, (d) promoting physical and psychological well-being, and (e) motivating people to work for positive social change. Functionalism, conflict theory, and interactionism all provide valuable ways for sociologists to understand religion. Data correlations show that in almost all regards the highly secular democracies consistently enjoy low rates of societal dysfunction, while pro-religious and anti- evolution America performs poorly. A dysfunction for some people, is quite beneficial to others. Formation of Collective Consciousness. Structural functionalism, or simply functionalism, is "a framework for building theory that sees society as a complex system whose parts work together to promote solidarity and stability".. One dysfunction is the presumption that organized religion is a positive social force. This is an idea with deep roots especially in America. Sociologists study religion as both a belief system and a social institution. Sin is what we are made of, and whatever we humans are doing is bound to be corrupted in one way or another. Theoretical perspective Major assumptions; Functionalism: Religion serves several functions for society. Whether that change is good or bad would seem to require interpretative criteria not afforded by a social scientific paradigm for functional analysis. In particular, Durkheim thought of the close-knit interactions between families and small communities, groups of people who share a common religion, who may eat together, work together, and spend leisure time together. Keywords: religion, secularization, universality, socioeconomics, societal dysfunction, successful societies scale Popular nontheism is a similarly casual response to superior conditions. Compliance with role expectations and with rules is expected without any flexibility. Religion has also been the source of conflicts between different types of religion such as Christian and Muslims. Whether that change is manifest or latent is a relatively simple empirical question. How religions contribute to the maintenance of social order. But at the same time religion has many dysfunctions or performs many negative roles which destabilises and disintegrates societies in Ghana. However, some of the negative roles of religion hinders social and economic progress. As a social institution, religion is a pattern of social action organized around the beliefs and practices that people develop to answer questions about the meaning of existence. The function of religion is any service, role and effects of religion on human life. Are these functions unique or some human resources can play the role of religion? Functions and Dysfunctions of Religion Religion is a universal part of many cultures and affects societies through its functions and dysfunctions. Religion, gender, and sexuality. Religion is assumed to be a sociobehavioral factor similar to social support and education, factors that themselves are positively associated with several health benefits, including better cognitive functioning (Stephens, Kinney, Norris, and Ritchie 1987; Weintraub, Powell, and Whitla 1994). Religions fulfill psychological needs. What this suggests is one of two options: Either religion leads to social dysfunction, or that dysfunctional people turn to religion for relief. Dysfunction signifies the mechanism by which social change is evidenced within a social system. Why religion is so widespread amongst human societies? Essay on the Dysfunctions of Religion – Religion as a basic social institution of human society has been fulfilling certain positive func­tions no doubt. Religion helps to create social order and maintains the value consensus. This is demonstrated through such benefits as: religious organizations are not required to pay some taxes Psychological and Social Functions of Religion. Religious beliefs and practices, and why they change. The Vern and Bonnie Bullough Collection on Sex and Gender contains a variety of books that focus on the intersection of religion and human sexuality. They provide schools for the poor. Functionalists argue that religion is a conservative force and that this is a positive function for society and for individuals. It upholds traditionalism and impedes social changes by encouraging superstitions, traditions and customs. Often these families rigidly adhere to a particular belief (religious, political, financial, personal). Critical Sociology. Dysfunctions of Religion According to Durkheim, the collective consciousness is formed through social interactions. Social functions and dysfunctions of religion. Religion performs welfare, education and recreation functions - Religious Organizations carry out or build ip some welfare activities and social programs, and they also operate charitable institution, hospitals, orphanages, medical clinics and etc. This approach looks at society through a macro-level orientation, which is a broad focus on the social structures that shape society as a whole, and believes that society has evolved like organisms. Religion is also an example of a cultural universal, because it is found in all societies in one form or another. Functionalist Theory. Religion hinders Social progress and impedes social changes: Religion makes people dogmatic and God-fearing. It is further claimed that the absence of religious belief will contribute strongly to social dysfunction. 5. Those with the most dysfunction, such as Portugal and the U.S., are the most religious, as measured by self-professed belief, church attendance, habits of prayer, and the like. classifying religion as heritage – is, at the same time, a way of negotiating its attitude to its own history. As a belief system, religion shapes what people think and how they see the world. Religious people are at heightened risk of developing sexual disorders and feeling at a loss to deal with them or get help. Its role in promoting social solidarity, as Durkheim has pointed out, and its need in providing inner individual peace and solace as Edward Sapir has pointed out cannot be undermined. The classification of religion as heritage is supported inexorably by the erosion of the organizational power of religion in social life. levels of stress and anxiety produced by sufficiently dysfunctional social and especially economic environments. For example, in Iraqi the Sunnis and the Shiites have fought civil wars because of religion. Finally, religion promotes social control: it reinforces social norms such as appropriate styles of dress, following the law, and regulating sexual behaviour. In the case of religious beliefs, there is typically a social payoff to these mental contortions – a range of evidence supports the role of religion in social bonding. They help relieve our fears and anxieties about the unknown. Religion is turning people against themselves The demands that religion places on people are unrealistic. What part religions play in cultural and social transformation. Firstly, religion offers a reason for life on earth, by explaining life after death, and giving its followers missions and motives for daily life. They help us confront and explain death. 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