Does religion discourage social change and maintains things the way they are? Or does it encourage social change and accept new rules, ideas and behaviours? Each theory has their own interpretation to whether religion is a conservative force or a radical force. Marx and most Marxists believe religion is a conservative force, they believe that religion contributes in the power of the ruling class, each person’s role in society is given to them for a specific reason, God has chosen them follow the life they are living and why would they want to change this? Therefore they would not question their role.
However, the citizens wanted to make their own rules to follow, sensible and understandable rules. Further on Paine explains “the sun will never shine on a cause of greater worth?” I think that Paine is saying that it is such an issue that we should look to reform it in any way so that it is more fair to all citizens. The struggle of having a King or a Monarchy for the people at that time was difficult. The community wanted a more fair and equal government, while the king was not giving that to them. Let’s take for instance when Paine refers to the past writings of another author, Mr. Pelham “they will last my time.” The name of ancestors will be remembered for their great deeds by future generations with destinies of their own.
Paine thinks the distinction between King and Subject is different from other societal distinctions among people because he says originally the world lived in equality. All men are born equal and has no right to establish his family over another. Other distinctions have religious or natural reasons, but the distinction between of men into Kings and Subjects has no specific reason. Paine says that when Kings were made it was a mistake, because man was supposed to only have god ruling them. He says the reason for this distinction, could most likely be due to sin.
From today as mine by right.” Creon also now believes that as he is now king he is infallible and believes that his own laws should come above the laws of the gods. “But I am the law” Creon`s own attitude towards his own rule seems very autocratic, his opinion that a king does not need to listen to the people and make judgements he believes are the most beneficial to the state. “ I have never based my political principles on the opinions of people in the streets” “And I will act according to my own convictions” Creon believes that his actions to deny the burial of Polynices are justified because he believes that the gods will support his actions as Polynices was a traitor and Creon sees no reason as to why the gods would honour a traitor. “No, he must be left unburied, his corpse carrion for the birds and dogs to tear, an obscenity for citizens to behold! These are my principles.
In the perfect society, Plato believes that it is necessary for rulers to occasionally refrain from telling the whole truth. He explains why it is in the best interest of the governing class to lie to its working classes in order to maintain the structure of power. First, he discusses his reasoning behind The Guardian class. His system of rulers is based on individual ability, unlike most ruling systems where the people in charge become so based off of family history and financial status (in The Republic, Guardians are not specifically wealthy or poor, as he believes either circumstance would render them unable to accomplish their work). Plato's society is one built around excellence and formed under an aristocratic class that thrives off of the necessity to be as first-rate as possible.
No one would forget such a quote when you once heard it, especially if you are born in a period full of inequitable and unfair treatment, “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it”. The author of this quote is Francois-Marie Arouet de Voltaire, a man who leads us to the world of liberty and justice, which would never be a desirable world for us before. As 3rd estate people, we would never think of opposing the tyranny upon us just like we would never think of coming to the king to ask him to chop off our head. We would never fight for demanding more crops that we grow with our sweat and tears even though we are in a hungry condition. We are burdened by the heavy taxes in the entire affair, even salt.
Sacred objects differ from religion to religion, but they all serve the same primary function and that is to unite the believers into a collective and give them a sense of belonging, and to also create social harmony. However, Postmodernists such as Stjepan Mestrovic argue that Durkheim’s theory cannot be applied to modern society due to the increasing diversity that has split the collective consciousness, so now there is no longer one shared value system for religion to reinforce, and so it cannot create social harmony. Bronislaw Malinowski, another functionalist, agrees with Durkheim’s theory that religion promotes social solidarity and social harmony. But, he believes that it does so by performing psychological functions for individuals, like helping them cope with mental stress that may undermine social solidarity. Malinowski identifies two situations where religion performs this role, one of them being times of a life crisis.
ID 198624 Humanities 2341 February 8, 2012 Values The principle values found in the Declaration of Independence are equality, freedom, life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The major premise of the Declaration of Independence opposed an unruly government. Jefferson’s second paragraph states that all men are equal according to the rights that were given by God and to protect those rights the people should establish a government that served the interest of the people. During the Enlightenment there was “an absolute opposition to cruel legal procedures and arbitrary government.” (Enlightenment Values Matrix 3) Philosophers of the Enlightenment wanted to create a secular utopia, where people had the right to oppose an unfair government and speak freely. One way was the idea of a Social Contract; an agreement by which human beings are said to have abandoned the "state of nature" in order to form the society in which they live.
John Locke was one of the influential political philosophers of modern period (1632-1704). At his works he supported the claim that men are by nature free and equal against the claim that God had create all people naturally as a subject to monarch. Moreover, in his work Two Treaties of Government he argued that people have rights such as the right to life, liberty, and property that have a foundation independent of the laws of any particular society. Locke supports the right of the people to overthrow rulers who betray them; he asserts that if a leader violates the community’s trust, the people can and should replace him immediately. Similarly, if the government does not fulfill the needs of the people, it should be dissolved and replaced with other form of government which people think is the best.
The first of these dangers is susceptibility of Americans to extreme individualism, and isolation from the community. Secondly Tocqueville fears that American’s would develop an excessive desire for material things. Moreover, he believes democracy would cause American’s to lose the ability to think for themselves and, instead conform to society. Tocqueville’s final concern of Democracy was that an intense aspiration for total equality would in turn create a society who sacrifices many rights. Tocqueville argues that the only thing which will keep Americans away from these dangers, which would undoubtedly lead to despotism is religion as source of moral education.