"Religion / God / Theology" Essays

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Exegesis of Hebrews 12 Term Paper

Term Paper  |  18 pages (5,679 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 18

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Hebrews 12:1-3

An Exegesis of Hebrews 12:1-3

One cannot give an account of Hebrews 12:1-3 without first giving an account of the letter to the Hebrews as a whole. And that cannot be done without first considering the author of the letter. The traditional acceptance is that the ideas are Pauline if not the literary style, which is of a… [read more]


Superstition Is a Belief Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (674 words)
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Superstition is a belief in something that is not based on reason. In other words, it is the opposite of faith -- which, as the medieval world understood and tried to show (in the works of Thomas Aquinas, for example), was based on reason. Superstition is usually associated with what are called "old wives' tales," and they usually deal with luck or things that might occur in the future.

I do not believe that I am superstitious about anything, even though I sometimes play along with superstitions. For example, I might root for the number 8 (which is said to be lucky) and shy away from the number 4 (unlucky).

The difference between science, pseudoscience, philosophy and religion is that in a modern sense science is held above the others because it is based the collection of empirical data. Pseudoscience is a kind of false or wishful collection of data but is mostly hyperbole. Philosophy is the study of wisdom, as the ancient Greeks used to say. But such figures as Aristotle would have seen no difference between philosophy and science. And religion is that which binds us back to God -- as we appear to be separated.

The difference between proving something and having faith is this: proof is something that can be ratified by the intellect as true. Faith is the leap the will must take when reason shows that one must accept solely on the authority of the messenger alone -- hence, faith comes by hearing, but rests upon reason.

I do not believe in pseudoscience. But I do have faith in God.

I can attempt to prove that God is true. I can point to the quinque viae that Aquinas used. Or I can point to the argument of Anselm: God is that than which nothing greater can be conceived.

I do not believe that prayer is a pseudoscience, but I do believe it is how we talk to God and I believe He listens and that prayer is good for us.

My…… [read more]


Art Appreciation Dorothea Lange's Migrant Mother, Nipomo Term Paper

Term Paper  |  7 pages (2,190 words)
Bibliography Sources: 7

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Art Appreciation

Dorothea Lange's Migrant Mother, Nipomo, California (1936)

Dorothea Lange's 1936 photograph may be interpreted from the perspective of both ideological criticism and feminist criticism. From an ideological perspective, Lange captures the ideological consequences of the Lawless Decade that preceded the Great Depression -- the effects of which Migrant Mother perfectly reflects. The children recede into the background as… [read more]


John Donne's "The Canonization" Begins Research Paper

Research Paper  |  7 pages (2,681 words)
Bibliography Sources: 6

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" Although in some ways this may be read "as a consolation for what the poet cannot do -- although the speaker cannot make history or build a monument, the small beauty of a sonnet or an urn can be as good as a tomb or chronicle," Donne is ultimately saying that recording their love in poem and song will… [read more]


Death the Four Categories of Human Being Essay

Essay  |  7 pages (2,676 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+

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Death

The four categories of human being are biological, psychological, sociological and religious.

The four types of Transcendence are ancestral, experiential, cultural and mythic.

A disembody spirit is the survival of a person through consciousness and will but without a physical body.

Spiritual embodiment is a body not associated with the physical body in death but signifies a person's survival… [read more]


Greek Orthodox Church Term Paper

Term Paper  |  6 pages (1,913 words)
Bibliography Sources: 6

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Greek Orthodox Church

The only real exposure I had ever had to the Greek Orthodox church before this assignment was going to my first Greek Festival back in high school. I had the pleasure of talking to a priest there, who explained their services. One of things that I noticed right off was that a lot of the traditions resembled… [read more]


Personal Religious History Religion Today Essay

Essay  |  3 pages (1,057 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0

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Personal Religious History

Religion today is probably one of the most contentious areas of debate in society. The fact that there are so many possible belief systems is one of the challenges faced by today's religious person. Those who grew up in a Christian background, for example, have a tendency to believe in the absolute truth of their own position without giving much consideration to other directions. The same is true of other fundamentalist religions such as Judaism or Islam. My own personal history is very much informed by the Christian background in which I grew up. I just also take into account, however, more recent events that have influenced who I am today, including the events on September 11, 2001.

My childhood was infused with Christianity. As a family, we attended regular church services, had Bible study times at home, and generally professed ourselves to be children. In my young self, this created a philosophy that believed in heaven and hell, as well as the necessity of being a Christian in order to be able to go to heaven. At the time, I believed that people who believed otherwise than myself were "lost souls."

As a believer, I also held the philosophy that compassion and love for others were one of the manifestations of Christianity in myself. I always tried to help where I could, especially where a person was suffering to a greater extent than I was.

I was part of a community that generally held the same beliefs that I did. When one grows up in a home that is based on a certain philosophy, it is easy to accept this philosophy if it is not challenged by anyone in one's immediate environment. Growing up as a Christian, my parents always provided me with a large amount of support for developing my ideas around my religion. They also made sure that I came into contact with a community that held the same ideas as I did. Many of our friends were Christian as well, reinforcing the philosophy in myself.

I believe there are many beautiful things about Christianity. I like the idea of heaven, for example. I also like the idea of compassion and helping others in need based on the love Christ had for the suffering world. In retrospect, the time when I held these beliefs without question seems painfully peaceful, especially in the light of the things I have known and experienced since.

When one grows up in a certain philosophy, there is always a measure of protection. Depending on the extent of this protection provided by the parents, one might be somewhat shocked to come into contact with a world where the reality is far different from that promoted at home. In my home, for example, I was taught the value of caring for others, as well as the value of the Christian philosophy.

When I grew up and started serving as a Naval officer from 1999 to 2005, I was exposed to many… [read more]


Impact of Religion on the Elderly Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (917 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2

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Public health emergency preparedness and response.

lab assignment two topics gerontology the impact of religion

The Impact of Religion among Elderly

Clear identification, description, and definition of the topic. Present relevant information such as: incidence, statistics, and demographical information.

"An analysis of Gallup polls between 1992 and 1999 shows that thirty-eight percent of Americans over fifty years of age attend church at least once a week and seventy percent in that age group rate religion as an important part of their lives (Ehmann, 1999). Jeffrey Levin, the premier writer in the field of religion, aging, and health points out that 50% of those over 65 attend church at least weekly" (Onken 1999). Research conducted by the Yale University School of Medicine indicates that religion can have a significant impact upon the health of the elderly: Americans over 65 who regularly attend religious services are more apt to engage in preventative self-care and are more likely to have positive social ties that promote better psychological and physical health (New research, 1997, Science Daily). Religion does not specifically 'heal' the elderly, but it does promote the creation of a healing environment.

Explain the bio-psychosocial aspects/factors or theories which impact your topic (discuss at least 2 aspects)

According to Erik Erikson, the central developmental conflict of the elderly is the conflict between integrity vs. despair (Harder 2005). Individuals search for a sense that their lives were meaningful. Religion can help give people a philosophical and emotional context in which to place their lives. There are also biological and sociological aspects that affect the perceptions of the aging person. Sickness can cause the elderly to feel depression, and retirement and the loss of friends and loved ones can also provoke depression. Religion can help the individual better understand 'why me' if he or she is afflicted with an illness, and religious communities can create a network of ties to sustain the elderly person even after adult children have moved away and loved ones and friends have passed away.

What are the specific needs of this particular elderly group on a micro, mezzo, and macro level?

On a micro, or individual/familial level, the elderly person must find a balance between independence and interdependence. Some elderly people may be resistant to seeking support for activities they once performed with ease, such as cooking a meal for themselves. On the other hand, children may be overly protective of parents who do not need intensive support. On a mezzo level, elderly individuals can benefit from retaining a sense of connection to the community and also engaging in personal development, either through travel or taking classes. On a macro, societal level, elderly persons deserve to have their skills and past knowledge respected, and for elderly persons who…… [read more]


Action(s) Should Christians Research Paper

Research Paper  |  3 pages (948 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5

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Surely, it would practically be impossible for someone today to consider that absolutely all of the activities that he or she performs are environmental-friendly. Even with that, the respective person should do anything in his or her power in order to pollute as little as possible, as people are likely to find that it is actually very easy to assist the environment. The general purpose of Christianity is to protect and save humanity, and, considering that in order to do so Christians should first focus on saving the planet because it is humanity's home, it only seems natural for Christians to want to take on an environmentalist position. Christians are traditionally focused on protecting the natural world, as "there is a tendency, especially among some Christian environmentalists, to invoke a model of nature as a harmonious, interconnected, and interdependent community" (Sideris 2).

Christians need to understand that recycling is not limited to partitioning trash so as for garbage men to be able to select and recycle materials. Mostly everything, ranging from clothes to electronics can be reused. Also, it is very important for people to focus on buying and using materials that can be recycled.

With members in the Christian community being particularly close, it is very likely that it would achieve great results if it would unite in starting a general recycling process. Priests are particularly important in this situation, as they have the ability to promote environmentalist concepts and because the public is typically accustomed to follow directions that they receive in church. The church itself is likely to benefit from this process, as people would regain their trust in the institution, especially considering that its history has been particularly troubled during the last centuries.

One of the easiest (and surely effective) methods of assisting the environment would be for Christians to be certain that the bibles that they buy are made out of recycled materials. Given the large number of bibles commercialized around the world, it is very probable that such an act would prove to be efficient. Similarly, in an attempt to save trees by refraining from using paper, Christians should use present day technology with the purpose of sending mails, as conventional mailing devices are obsolete, insecure, and generally less effective when compared with modern e-mail mediums.

Works cited:

Jenkins, Willis "Missiology in Environmental Context: Tasks for an Ecology of Mission," International Bulletin of Missionary Research Oct. 2008

Novotny, Patrick Where We Live, Work, and Play: The Environmental Justice Movement and the Struggle for a New Environmentalism (Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, 2000)

Reilly, Patrick "Leftists Pushing Radical 'christian' Environmentalism," Human Events 22 June 2009

Sideris, Lisa H. Environmental Ethics, Ecological Theology, and Natural Selection (New York: Columbia University Press, 2003)

"Religion and the Environment," Retrieved May 12, 2011, from the Palomar College…… [read more]


Religious Content or Ideas of Ann Bradstreet Phillis Wheatley and Olaudah Equiano Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (845 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2

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Religion in Early American Writers: Bradstreet, Wheatley, And Olaudah Equiano

For some early colonial writers, America was a shining city on a hill. In the eyes of the Puritans, America was supposed to provide them with a respite from oppression and the ability to create a new Jerusalem, a place of salvation away from the religious and politician institutions of Europe. However, for women and African-Americans, their role in this new project of creating an American identity was more uncertain. Authors such as the female Puritan poet Ann Bradstreet and the African-American writers Phyllis Wheatley and Olaudah Equiano all struggled with the question of whether they had a 'right' to articulate themselves as writers. Religion was a common means of justification for socially marginalized writers -- by appealing to God and the humility required of all authors, regardless of sex or race, female and black authors could justify their authorship. By taking a stance of humility, they could gently remind the reader that all should be humble before the divine and all human beings had a right to be free.

Ann Bradstreet was a Puritan writer who used her verse to articulate her personal and religious concerns. In her poem "To my dear and loving husband" Bradstreet states that love is priceless, and prays that she will be rewarded in heaven by being reunited with her husband. However, since election is uncertain in the Puritan worldview, this desire is expressed as a fond dream rather than absolute certainty. Love of husband and God is to be prized above material wealth -- this idea is also expressed in "The prologue." "The prologue" also makes a case for Bradstreet's right to speak as an author. Not ancient tradition, only God can confer the right to speak; "A poet's pen all scorn I should thus wrong, / For such despite they cast on female wits; / If what I do prove well, it won't advance, / They'll say it's stol'n, or else it was by chance." Even though Bradstreet humbly says that men write best, she also begs the ability to put down her thoughts in prose: "Give thyme or parsley wreath, I ask no bays." This humility is befitting a Puritan as well as a woman, and despite her show of meekness, Bradstreet also indicates that the religious subjects of her "mean pen" are still worthy. This humility is also manifested in her poem "Contemplations" which stresses the interrelated web of God, humanity, and nature.

Arguing from a position of humility before God was…… [read more]


Wesleyan Quadrilateral Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,192 words)
Style: MLA  |  Bibliography Sources: 1

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¶ … Thorsten's argument is that Wesley developed a pneumatology in crafting his Wesleyan Quadrilateral and that understanding this pneumatology would enable one to most accurately understand Wesley's intentions, therefore approach the Scripture in a more accurate and appropriate manner.

John Wesley proposed four methods for evaluating the Scriptures. These came to be called the Wesleyan Quadrilateral and refer to the four elements that John Wesley saw as fundamental for theological method: experience, reason, tradition, and Scripture.

The quadrilateral for Wesley serves as God's message to humans. It is through these four ways that one can best approach and understand God. However, oftentimes, invoking all four at the same time as evidence for one's argument, or commingling them into theoretical debate, can be confusing since one or more of the ways can be non-complementary to the other. It is, partially, this that has resulted in dissension between scholars and different churches through the ages, and when evangelical and liberals quote the quadrilateral as defense of their views, confusion can be seeded.

Thorsen attempts to demonstrate that Wesley saw Scripture as being the primacy approach and that the other three elements, reason, tradition, and experience were secondary to -- and off shoots from - scriptural interpretation. In other words, that the other three elements served to elaborate on, serve as analogy to, and apply scriptural truths to life.

Discovery of and clarification of this pneumatology bridges relations between evangelical and liberal Christian viewpoints rather than exacerbating dissention. This does not mean that scriptural perspective is the exclusive method of interpretation as per contemporary evangelism, bur rather that it denotes the primary lens of interpreting the Bible. There is a big difference between the two. At the same time, Thorsen tells liberals that Scriptural interpretation is supposed to, per Wesley, direct other means of interpreting the Book.

The originality and strength of the Wesleyan Quadrilateral, per Thorsten, lay in the fact that it gave each and every Christian his or her own individual way of approaching God. There was no one specific doctrine that was THE TRUTH, rather each Christian could understand God and attain the Holy Spirit in his or her way by using the 4 methods as described by Wesley's Quadrilateral. This provided a theological method as contrasted to a systematic theology, and is another indication of the ecumenical spirit that Thorsten sees pervades Wesley's work, and that may be traced back to his Methodist roots.

An examination of each of his four recommendations in turn will give us insight into his theological method as delineated by Thorsten:

Scripture

Here, Scripture stands primary whilst Christian experience, reason, and tradition may be used as lens for relaying the Scriptures to one's own experiences and understanding it better. Experience, reason, tradition are complementary to the scripture; they have a complimentary relationship one to the other whilst being deployed in better understanding of their arch-objective -- the Scriptures.

Wesley asserted that the "written word of God [was] the only and sufficient rule both… [read more]


Etymology and Definition Essay

Essay  |  5 pages (1,766 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3

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Sacrifice is a word used by many in a variety of contexts, yet this word has an array of meanings which still have the same but yet different definitions. It is difficult to describe exactly what this word means without going back to the root of it. Depending in what tense the word is used and in what form, it… [read more]


Meaning of Baptism Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (673 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2

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Baptism is a sacrament practiced in most Christian denominations. According to Anonymous (2005) "views of baptism vary, but common views of the rituals include: it grants or symbolizes salvation, commemorates Christ's death and resurrection, fulfills the command of Jesus to baptize, cleanses away sins, confers grace, and publicly expresses one's faith." This important Christian sacrament originated with Judaism. Porter (2008) explains that before worshippers who were considered unclean could enter the temple, they had to be cleansed. Worshippers could be considered unclean as a result of touching an unclean person, dealing with the dead or diseased, or being intimate with a woman who was menstruating. Individuals who wanted to worship brought offerings such as doves or lambs to the priest who administered the cleansing rite by washing the unclean person in the waters, oils, and perfumes at the temple (Porter, 2008). The worshipper was then considered clean and allowed to enter the temple. Shaw (2003) explains that "Jesus was baptized by John the Baptist in the River Jordan; after Jesus emerged from the water, the Holy Spirit descended upon him, in the form of a dove, and the voice of God spoke from heaven, declaring Jesus to be 'my well-beloved son'." As a result Christians are now baptized in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Shaw (2003) adds that according to Matthew's gospel, Jesus commanded his disciples to baptize thus in his post-resurrection appearance to them in Galilee. According to The Columbia Encyclopedia, the baptism of Jesus is considered part of the founding of the Christian Church.

Porter (2008) explains that baptisms continued in the early Christian Church typically involved large groups of people who were immersed nude in a river. Converts were assisted into the river by two priests, baptized by two other priests, and assisted out of the water on the other side of the river and into a white robe by two additional priests. The priests represented the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and the emerging from the river represented…… [read more]


Gran Torino Is a 2008 Film Essay

Essay  |  5 pages (1,481 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1+

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Gran Torino is a 2008 film, directed by, staring, and produced by Clint Eastwood. Eastwood remarked that this is his final acting role, and was a family project; his son Scott played Trey, and his son Kyle wrote the score. It opened in North America on December 12, 2008 and worldwide on January 9, 2009. Despite what some might see… [read more]


Historical Islamic Faith Essay

Essay  |  5 pages (1,489 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2

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Islamaphobia is one of the most catching illnesses of nowadays and on the rise. However, Islamaphobia is caused by an erogenous impression of Islam where people make the mistake of mixing up Islamists with Moslems. Moslems, according to the way I see it, are the true practitioners of historical Islam that had developed throughout the generations but stayed close to… [read more]


Islamic Faith Essay

Essay  |  5 pages (1,301 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2

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Islamic Faith

Religion is a very revolutionary thing, especially in the hands of the right person. This is hard for the modern mind to accept in the West where religion hs been dethroned. To understand this, it is necessary to return to the time of Mohammad and comprehend his time and faith. This is exactly what is done in A Concise History of the Middle East by Arthur Goldschmidt Jr.

Short Summary

The book functions as an introduction to the history of the Middle East from Islam's beginnings to the present. This work is distinguished by a clear style and a broad and balanced treatment of the subject. The authors wrote it for undergraduate college students, assuming that they have no prior knowledge. Thematically, its central treatment circles around focuses on the development of Islamic culture and institutions and culture, especially the life and times of Mohammad and his successors in the early history of Islam. Without Mohammad, it is likely that there would not be Islam. He is evidence of what one dedicated person can do to change history and the society around him.

Body

The meat of the Islamic history is explored in the book and this is critical to understand. While one textbook can not hope to fill in all of the holes in Western knowledge concerning the region and Islam, it certainly does yeoman's service in only a few pages.

Luckily, though a brief history, the book does a very nice job explaining the historical background of the Islamic faith in explaining its development by Mohammad in chapters 3 and 4. (Goldschmidt and Davidson, 2009, 15-42). The Quran is seen as the central miracle of Islam, proof itself of Mohammad's prophecy and the existence of God himself due to the beauty and integrity of the text. Even though Mohammad could not read, he produced this perfect book of law as it was dictated to him by God himself (ibid, 43).

Mohammad as God's messenger is key to understanding the Islamic world's view of itself in God's revelation to humanity. In addition to being the founder of the religion of Islam, he is considered by Muslims to be a messenger and prophet of God. In addition, he is the last law-bearer in a series of Islamic prophets and the last prophet of God as taught by the Qur'an. Thus, Muslims consider Mohammad as the restorer of an the original monotheistic faith of Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus and other prophets that had become corrupted. In addition, Mohammad was also functioned as diplomat, social reformer and revolutionary, merchant, orator, philospher, legislator, military leader, humanitarian/philanthropist and an agent of the divine will. So that people would not worship Mohammad, his image could never be shown (ibid, 27, 43-44).

Born in 570 C.E. In Mecca, Mohammad was orphaned at young age and was brought up under the tutelage of his uncle Abu Talib who was a powerful man in the city. Mohammad later worked as a successful merchant and shepherd… [read more]


Confucianism, Catholicism and Islam Essay

Essay  |  4 pages (1,442 words)
Bibliography Sources: 3

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3" To that end, even robbers possess moral knowledge "if you call them robbers, they are embarrassed.4"

Wang Vangming's statements were revolutionary in that he contested the need to spend hours of one's life learning moral improvement from books. Rather, he insisted that moral improvement was an innate aptitude that all were born with and that all could achieve and… [read more]


Old Testament Berit, Typically Translated Into English Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (763 words)
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Old Testament

Berit, typically translated into English as "covenant," "promise," or "pledge," is a Hebrew term that takes on far more than literally meaning within the Bible. Politically, it is a relationship between peoples, a way to describe that a level of responsibility is owed to a group from an entity (King, ruler, group, etc.) based on fealty, loyalty, and an agreement. Biblically, it is a way to describe that God chose the Jewish people through a covenant with Abraham. In that, Abraham and his offspring were special people who could have a land of their own and enjoy peace and good will through their own promise of relationship with God. The people must, in this example, give a pledge that Yahweh is the one and only god, and that the people will worship and serve that God above all others.

As a historical word, the term berit implies a special type of relationship between a lord and his servants. The lord takes on the role and responsibility to protect the servants; neither required nor expected by law, and in return, servants must make promises of their own to fulfil the bargain. A berit is a relationship agreement; two sided, and is valid only if both sides adhere to their part of the bargain.

Taken further, since Christianity arose out of Judaism, the promise between God and believers goes a step further. It becomes the doctrine of the Trinity, which is the basis of realization of the divinity of Christ, teaching that there are three parts to God: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. One basic idea of the Trinity, then, within the Torah is that of the covenant of God, the Jews, and the Promised homeland of Israel. That there is but one god is revealed many times, but the Judaic Old Testament belief is that God is one-being, split into three essences, but the same God, or one being. In the Old Testament, there are several proofs that there is but one God:

"Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is One Lord." (Deut. 6:4)

In the first of the Ten Commandments, 'Thou shalt have no other Gods before me." (Deut. 5:7).

Thus, the covenant of berit moves beyond the Ancient Jewish lands, to modern Christianity, as…… [read more]


Faustus and Everyman an Analysis of Resemblance Term Paper

Term Paper  |  11 pages (3,798 words)
Bibliography Sources: 8

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Faustus and Everyman

An Analysis of Resemblance: Faustus and Everyman

Marlow's Doctor Faustus can be viewed on various levels, four of which are worth mentioning: First, Doctor Faustus can be considered as "Homiletic tragedy" in which the protagonist incarnates intellectual pride, compared with both Icarus and Lucifer -- existing simply to be punished. Second, it can be interpreted as a… [read more]


Problem of the Planets Book Report

Book Report  |  13 pages (4,178 words)
Bibliography Sources: 13

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¶ … Total

The Problem of the Planets

The problem of the planets relates to their movement. The Ancient Greeks were the first to address the issue thoroughly, and one of their men - Ptolemy - came up with a theory about how planets moved (Knox, n.d.). This was needed, because the Greeks said there were "wandering stars" that did… [read more]


Thomas Jefferson Deist and Patriot Research Paper

Research Paper  |  5 pages (1,624 words)
Bibliography Sources: 7

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Thomas Jefferson -- Deist & Patriot

"Patriotism is not a short frenzied burst of emotion, but the long and steady dedication of a lifetime…" (Jefferson)

Thomas Jefferson is certainly well-known in the United States history books as the man who helped write the Declaration of Independence and the U.S. Constitution -- and of course he served as President of the… [read more]


Old Test Love God Research Paper

Research Paper  |  2 pages (597 words)
Bibliography Sources: 0

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It is not simply the Egyptians to whom God was actually showing love through the actions taken by Moses and Aaron in the bringing of the plagues. A great deal of love and compassion is shown to the Israelites in the bringing of the plagues and in the ultimate flight from Egypt that will eventually restore this nation to its rightful home. The Old Testament as a whole is about a nation learning to find and understand their God, and it is God's love for His people that drives the action of the Old Testament stories. This is most definitely true when it comes to the ten plagues Moses and Aaron bring to the Egyptians through God's command; it is through the power of these signs that the Hebrews are eventually allowed not only to escape the bonds of their slavery, but these miracles continue t protect the people to some degree through the knowledge of the might and power of God when it comes to defending His followers. The ten plagues are one more sign in the Old Testament that God is never away from His people, and that his love and compassion for those who have accepted Him is infinite and full of corporeal power. By giving the world these concrete signs of this love, compassion, and power, God was not demonstrating a desire for vengeance, but rather a desire for the return of love that He extends.

It is true that God as presented in the Old Testament is more concerned with punishment than forgiveness. The two are not mutually exclusive, however, and indeed punishment can be seen as an outgrowth of love. It is a strong love indeed that will go to such lengths to make itself known.… [read more]


Epitome of the Teachings of Jesus Matt 6 25 34 Term Paper

Term Paper  |  6 pages (2,227 words)
Bibliography Sources: 5

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¶ … Ethnography: The Epitome of the Teachings of Jesus (Matt 6:25-34)

This paper offers a literary ethnography of the passage known as the Sermon on the Mount, the Epitome of the Teachings of Jesus, Matt 6:25-34. The passage offers guidance to individuals who worry, letting them know that God will care for their needs. Literary ethnography involves understanding the… [read more]


Bible Hosea Amos Isaiah Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (580 words)
Bibliography Sources: 1

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Bible-Hosea, Amos, Isaiah

Hosea, Amos, Isaiah

There are various figures of speech that are used by Hosea in the book of Hosea that are geared towards portraying God in a supreme and superior manner than man himself. Most of these figures of speech are repeated throughout the book of Hosea and are used with specific purposes, some of which overlap. For instance, in Hosea 11:10, there is a reference to God as the lion that roars and the people of Israel hence should follow Him,"… They will follow the LORD; he will roar like a lion. When he roars, his children will come trembling from the west…" (NIV). This verse uses the figure of speech roar like a lion to invoke obedience and supplication among the Israelites towards the Lord our God. This was after Hosea had seen the wayward behaviors of the Israelites who had strayed to worship other gods. This verse also alludes to Jesus Christ who is the Lion of the tribe of Judah, who was initially rejected by many but later they actually came bowing to him and saying surely He is the son of God.

The other very significant verse with figure of speech is Hosea 14:5 where the Lord is likened to the dew, "…I will be like the dew to Israel; he will blossom like a lily. Like a cedar of Lebanon he will send down his roots…" Here the verse is used to indicate restoration for the people of Israel once they come back to the Lord in reverence. This is a restoration from the Lord after the springs of Israel shall have dried up as indicated earlier on in Hosea 13:15.

The various figures of speech that Hosea has used in…… [read more]


Reply to Threads First Post: Respect Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (568 words)
Bibliography Sources: 2

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Reply to Threads

First Post:

Respect is important and it goes a long way in building a relationship, especially with a person of another faith. This post makes that point that respect does not necessarily mean agreement -- and that is true, but it is also an important point to remember because we must remember not to commit the sin of human respect. Human respect is good so long as it does not overwhelm the truth -- and if we believe that the Truth is Christ, then even though we respect the person who is Muslim, we must be strong in our faith and show how Christ is the True Way to salvation.

This post also brings up another very good point and that is the power of prayer: "Pray for them." There is a great deal of wisdom in this statement. After all, God alone has the power to convert souls, and if we are going to assist in the conversion of anyone, that assistance must begin with prayer. God listens to prayers and answers them and if we pray with a good heart and live our lives as Gods wills us to live them, then we are already on the fast track to converting other souls of good will.

However, there are always practical concerns one must realize -- such as the fact that one ought to understand the person with whom he is dealing. A better understanding of the Muslim background would go a long way in helping to reach out to such a person. You will have knowledge of that person's world, which will enable you to better know how to sympathize or how to keep from judging. Of course,…… [read more]


Factionalism and Schism Essay

Essay  |  2 pages (564 words)
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Schisms, in the religious context, are divisions between people or a break between two sectors of a religious faith that were previously a single, unified body. Two famous religious schisms occurred in Islam after the death of the prophet Muhammad and between Martin Luther and followers and the Catholic Church, which gave rise to Protestantism.

In the case of Islam, the Sunni Muslims are the largest denomination of Islam. Their name comes from the Arabic word meaning the "teachings of the prophet." This sect believes that Muhammad died without appointing a logical or liturgical successor to lead the Islamic community. Shia Islam is the second largest denomination of Islam, and believes that just as the prophet was, Imams after Muhammad are also chosen by God.

While Islamic law has developed to touch almost every aspect of human life -- Sharia, over time there have been different interpretations of these laws. Eighty-Five per cent of the Muslim community is Sunni, and roughly 15 per cent Shiite. The break between the two factions is ancient, going back to the 7th century and dealing with disagreements dealing with political, social and religious leadership. Interestingly enough, this schism continues in the contemporary world -- and is seen in the politics of Iran and Iraq, and well as the overall Islamic view towards the West.

Martin Luther, a priest and theology professor in what is now Germany, had, for years, disagreed with certain aspects of Church practices at the time. In particular, Luther was against the selling of indulgences, which was the practice of "selling" passes into heaven for people who had committed earthly sins. In addition, Luther believed that the Mass should be said in the…… [read more]


Voodoo Is Derived Comes From Vodun Term Paper

Term Paper  |  2 pages (664 words)
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¶ … voodoo" is derived comes from vodun, which means a god, spirit or some type of sacred object, in the Fon language of West Africa (Cavendish, 1970).

The term "voodoo," though, is typically used with reference to the beliefs and practices that are found in Haiti, where many adherents are descendants of slaves imported from many parts of Africa (Fluerant, 1996).

By extension, the term "voodoo" is also applied to similar practices in other Caribbean islands, in the southern states of America, and in Brazil, where plantation slavery was also commonplace (Cavendish, 1970).

For many in the Western world, voodoo usually carries some type of evil or negative connotation (Cavendish, 1970).

In fact, voodoo has long been misunderstood and misrepresented in popular Western culture and media (Childs, 2011).

The popular concept of voodoo in the West is that it is "dangerous" and marred by superstitious beliefs, and most view it as some type of hybrid religion that has been imported from Africa with a mix of Catholic elements depending on regional preferences (Frey, 2007).

7. Initiation into a voodoo cult can last several weeks and involves a rigorous ordeal in darkened rooms where initiates undergo a transformation and are assigned a new "voodoo" name (Cavendish, 1970).

8. Voodoo practices typically involve (a) black magic, (b) superstitious beliefs (e.g., sticking pins into so-called "voodoo dolls"), (c) casting spells, and (d) lighting black candles in cemeteries to Baron Samedi, the powerful lord of the underworld and patron of all black magic, summoning the dead, and being related to all manner of monsters, spirits and zombies (Cavendish, 1970).

9. In some cases, local and even nefarious underworld characters are invoked by voodoo practitioners in addition to Baron Samedi because these figures are believed to have many of the same powers to protect (Cavendish, 1970).

10. While many of these characters are male, females are also represented in the voodoo pantheon (Frey, 2007).

11. Songs and dancing, which can last for several hours or even…… [read more]


Dramatic Change in the Character of Paul Essay

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¶ … Saul of Tarsus embarked on his journey to Damascus, he had already gained fame as a devout Jew, member of the Pharisees, and leader of a group of Jews that wanted to wipe out the Christians. In fact, it was he who was one of those responsible for the death of the first Christian martyr, Stephen, in Jerusalem.… [read more]


Reign of the Emperor Justinian Is Largely Essay

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¶ … reign of the Emperor Justinian is largely considered to be the beginning of the period of art known as Early Byzantine Art which is considered the first of the three golden ages of Byzantine Art. Said period ended with the onset of Iconoclasm that occurred during the reign of Leo III from 527 A.D. To 726 A.D. Justinian's… [read more]


Flannery O'Connor Was Born Research Paper

Research Paper  |  8 pages (2,942 words)
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Its protagonist is again another false Messiah who seeks grace hard way, immersed in a whole gallery of characters ranging from comedy to extravagance. "Everything that grows has to converge '(1965), the latest collection of stories by O'Connor, hit the shelves months after its author died of the same disease that left her crippled. (Desmond, p129-38)

The initial, decisive obstacles,… [read more]


Faith and Reason Research Paper

Research Paper  |  6 pages (2,122 words)
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Faith and Reason

An Analysis of the Reconciliation of Faith and Reason

My thesis is that Thomas Aquinas reconciled Faith and Reason in a fundamental way -- or, more specifically, in five fundamental ways known as the quinquae viae. This paper will show how Aquinas helped move the relationship of faith and reason beyond the ontological argument of Anselm and… [read more]


Hamlet's Ghost Term Paper

Term Paper  |  6 pages (1,959 words)
Bibliography Sources: 6

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Sister Miriam thus places herself in agreement with the early critics of Hamlet who saw nothing unCatholic or unchristian about the Ghost's request for justice. Modern critics however view the request as one of blood -- incompatible with the Protestant notion of a saved soul.

Yet, there are characters in the play who respond to the Ghost like Catholic men: Marcellus and Barnardo, for instance, who open the play, "exhibit the traditional Catholic view…that a soul might come to earth from purgatory" (Sister Miriam "Discerning" 493). Meanwhile, others in the play offer Protestant views: "Horatio displays the skeptical attitude of Reginal Scot (1584), who flatly denies that spirits can assume material form and thereby appear to men" (493). Hamlet, therefore, is caught in between these two opposing viewpoints and (since he has been reared in a Protestant school) leans toward "the Protestant view of Ludwig Lavater (1570) and King James I (1597) that ghosts, though they might be angels, are generally devils who assume the appearance of the departed" (493). Thus, it is, as Sister Miriam suggests, a problem of the discernment of spirits. The Ghost, in other words, represents a Christian cry for justice -- not a devilish demand for blood and damnation. However, because Hamlet has had no proper training in the Christian, i.e., Catholic worldview, he cannot understand the Ghost's message. He puts off slaying Claudius for fear of sending him to Heaven -- a distinctly unCatholic and unchristian sentiment. If there are elements of unchristian thinking in the play, they may be found wholly in the character of Hamlet.

In conclusion, Hamlet's Ghost is a question mark for scholars who fail to place him within the framework of traditional Catholic teaching -- that he is, in other words, an exception to the 5th Commandment and represents a demand for justice. The failure of Hamlet to execute that demand is where the conflict lies -- and it is this tension that causes all the speculation concerning the spirit of the Ghost. What one might do better to analyze, therefore, is the spirit of Hamlet -- and how it fails (as Sister Miriam points out) to measure up to the idea of the Christian hero.

Works Cited

Battenhouse, Roy W. "The Ghost in Hamlet: A Catholic 'Linchpin'?" Studies in Philology vol. 48, no. 2, 1951, 161-192. Print.

Miriam Joseph. "Discerning the Ghost in Hamlet." PMLA vol. 76, no. 5, 1961, 493-502.

Print.

Miriam Joseph. "Hamlet, a Christian Tragedy." Studies in Philosophy vol. 59, no. 2,

1962, 119-140. Print.

Shakespeare, William. The Tragical History of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark. The Complete Signet Classic Shakespeare. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1972. 910-961. Print.

Siegel, Paul. "Hamlet, Revenge!"…… [read more]


Religious Teacher Essay

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Religious Teacher

Why do I want to become a teacher in a Catholic School Board?

Anyone that takes the effort and has the moral, spiritual and social motivation to become a teacher in a Christian / Roman Catholic environment is to be praised. There is so much for all of us to learn, and in particular so many young people… [read more]


Jewish Holiday of Sukkot Research Paper

Research Paper  |  10 pages (3,601 words)
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Sukkot, like many Jewish holidays, has multiple purposes in the Jewish culture, making it a religious celebration, but also a celebration of life. At this point in history, it is primarily a pilgrimage festival, and it commemorates the 40 years that the Jews spent wandering in the desert. When one examines the symbolism of the traditions connected with Sukkot that… [read more]


Popular Religions in the World Research Paper

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Christianity also utilized militant measures of its own in the form of warriors such as Charlemagne and various Crusades in an effort to coerce others to convert to its teachings. One of Christianity's greatest philosophers, St. Augustine, actually developed the idea of a "just" war that provided a moral justification for the efforts of Charlemagne and the Crusaders (Mayr-Harting, 1996). The Inquisitions that occurred throughout Europe and reached their zenith in Spain used the philosophies of Augustine as their justification (Walzer, 2002)

For nearly two thousand years Christianity and Islam have existed side by side. Often this coexistence has not been acrimonious. Still, all these years later both remain among the world's most popular religions. Interestingly, the two religions have taken differing paths relative to their secularism. Christianity has virtually abandoned any involvement in the political operations of the nations in which it is most popular while Islam has taken a different approach. Islam remains heavily involved in the politics of many nations throughout Africa, the Middle East, India, and Indonesia (Cesari, 2006). In recent years, Islam has actually seen a large increase in membership throughout the world and has actually by-passed Christianity in total world-wide membership. The factors for this upsurge are beyond the scope of this paper but the conflict between the two religions remains. Although the similarities between the religions are strong the differences continue to cause derision. Two thousand years have not allowed Christianity and Islam to grow closer together and there is no indication that it is likely to occur at any time in the near future. Despite their differences, Christianity and Islam have contributed significantly to the history of mankind and will continue to do so.

References

Cesari, J. (2006). European Muslims and the Secular State. Surrey, UK: Ashgate Publishing Company.

Latourette, K.S. (1975). A History of Christianity, Volume 1: Beginnings to 1500. New York: HarperOne.

Liu, X. (2011). A Silk Road Legacy: The Spread of Buddhism and Islam. Journal of World History, 55-81.

Mayr-Harting, H. (1996). Charlemagne, the Saxons, and the Imperial Coronation of 800. The English Historical Review, 1113-1133.

Walzer, M. (2002). The Triumph of Just War Theory (and the Dangers…… [read more]


Integrative Approach to Psychology and Christianity Book Review

Book Review  |  5 pages (1,368 words)
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Integrative Approach to Psychology and Christianity - Book Review

MAT Review: Integrative Approaches to Psychology and Christianity

The book Integrative approaches to psychology and Christianity: An introduction to worldview issues, philosophical foundations, and models of integration (2010), by David N. Entwhisle delves into the issue of how psychology and Christianity have traditionally been at odds with one another. Christianity is seen as being too focused on God and not focused enough on the self, while psychology is often thought to be godless (Entwhistle, 2010). Because psychology places human experience at the very core of understanding, it differs greatly from Christianity, which places emphasis not on humanity for understanding but on God and what He has offered to the world through Jesus Christ (McMinn, 1996). Psychology also does not leave room for belief (or faith) in the supernatural - a basic tenet on which Christianity is based (Johnson & Jones, 2000). Whether the two can blend from a counseling perspective and how that would take place in a world where there is so much division of opinion is the basis of the text (Entwhistle, 2010).

The worldview held by a person encompasses and to some extent controls how a person feels about everything in his or her world (Entwhistle, 2010). The significance of this, of course, is that a person's worldview is generally taught to him or her by parents and others, as opposed to being chosen by the person. People filter their worldviews through their culture, education, and family, and most do not realize that they are doing so - so they do not have any reason to question it or make an effort to change the way they are looking at things to a way that would be more acceptable for their ultimate belief system. Finding balance, however, is crucial when it comes to accepting God into one's life and also accepting what psychology can offer (Dineen, 2000; Jones & Butman, 1991). When both Christianity and psychology are viewed as areas of life that come from and belong to God, it is easier for believers to find psychology acceptable (Entwhistle, 2010).

At the end of the book, Entwhistle (2010) comes full circle and returns to the discussion of how a person's worldview and everything that he or she has experienced up to a given point in time, affects and alters the way that person interprets any data that he or she is given. That includes not only data that is given to him directly through verbal or written information, but also data that is provided through what that person sees, hears, and feels. How he or she handles life and how others react to him or her are very important aspects that relate to the understanding and processing of data. In the search for truth, Entwhistle (2010) ends the book with this: "we will sometimes have to live with ambiguity and uncertainty, be we affirm that God is the author of all truth…" (p. 275). This shows the strength… [read more]


Religion: Christopher Hitchens I Was Very Familiar Reaction Paper

Reaction Paper  |  2 pages (679 words)
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¶ … Religion: Christopher Hitchens

I was very familiar with Christopher Hitchens' position before watching his video. However, even though I was aware of his position, I had not really considered the depth and breadth of religion's involvement in modern conflicts in the world. While he said that he would avoid a Sesame Street response, but then stuck with the letter "B" and was able to name so many different conflicts that are directly traceable to people's religious affiliation came as something of a surprise to me. I simply had not considered that so many of today's modern conflicts were traceable to religion. Moreover, I am somewhat embarrassed to acknowledge that I was viewing religious conflicts as primarily disagreement between members of different religions and not even giving real consideration to the significant within-religious groups' conflicts that exist. For example, I was unaware that in Iraq people were destroying mosques that were of a different version of Islam than their own. In fact, I do not recall having heard this information at any other time, which made me reflect upon his statement that the media may discuss group-conflicts but does so in a way emphasizing ethnic differences and avoiding religious references when possible. I had not considered the media interpretations of these conflicts, and it made me think about how I might reframe some of the major "ethnic" conflicts of modern times if I had an understanding of the underlying religious issues.

The video triggered a significant amount of sorrow in me. So many people believe that religion is critical to someone being a good person. In America saying, "He is a Christian" is somehow supposed to be synonymous with "He is a good person." Likewise, mentioning that someone practices another religion immediately makes him suspect, particularly if that religion is one that is not well understood by the majority of Americans. However, the reality is that no religion has a monopoly on goodness and no religion has a monopoly on evil. People of all religious orientations do horrible…… [read more]


Hiring Policy Case Study

Case Study  |  2 pages (786 words)
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Hiring Policy

Facts of the Case

It would seem at the outset of a project such as Matthew and Thomas are launching -- a manufacturing facility -- that they would simply hire the most qualified individuals to work for them, candidates with the most experience and aptitude for this kind of employment. But the attempt to hire only evangelical Christians raises questions and appears to go against the law albeit it is legal according to 702 of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

Is such a policy legal? Answer: Yes, with a qualification

According to Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 employers -- when making employment decisions -- are barred from discriminating on the basis of sex, religion, age, ethnicity and disability. However, there is a statutory defense that allows employers to sidestep the Title VII requirements. It is known as the Bona Fide Occupational Qualification (BFOQ), and according to Chapter 13 (Civil rights and Employment Discrimination) an employer may "…lawfully hire an individual on the basis of religion, sex, or national origin" (485). The BFOQ can be used if the employer can prove that the discrimination is "reasonably necessary to the normal operation of that particular business" (485).

The BFOQ defense is not intended when the issue involves race or color. And moreover, because it is an affirmative defense, the burden of proof is on the shoulders of the employer to show a "reasonable basis for believing that the category of persons" (in this case, people of a certain religious faith) "excluded from a particular job" were not able to perform the work on that job.

In this case, the employer is discriminating against people who aren't evangelical Christians, which is an interesting twist to employment. The BFOQ exception is permitted under the Section 703 of Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 -- and though it is an available exception for both religious and gender issues Katie Manley explains that it is most frequently used for gender discrimination issues.

From a Great Commission perspective, would this policy be advisable? Answer: This would not be advisable.

In looking closely at the Great Commission -- following Jesus Christ's death and resurrection he urged his followers to go and baptize all nations -- it is hard to see why a company wanting to hire only evangelicals for a factory…… [read more]


Religious Influence on Art Research Paper

Research Paper  |  3 pages (1,141 words)
Bibliography Sources: 25

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Religous Influence on Art

Art has been significantly shaped by religious values through the ages, considering that the spiritual nature of religious concepts served as a perfect tool to inspire artists. Most artists who employ religious ideas while they devise their creations are interested in putting across their faith through art and in influencing the public in adopting spiritual attitudes in their relationship with society. Many individuals relate to how artists paint using their spiritual personality, with their material personality only being used with the purpose of giving shape to their thoughts. Some artists are likely to close their eyes before actually starting to create art, as this provides them with the opportunity to reach their spirituality easier.

Through considering supernatural concepts present in religious teachings, artists are enabled to create artwork that is as unique as possible. The fact that supernatural motifs are an essential part in the process of creation makes it possible for them to detach themselves from the material world and attempt to create art that expresses spirituality through its perfection. One can even say that spirituality fed some of the greatest works of art created through time.

Jones, Cheslyn; Wainwright, Geoffrey and Yarnold, Edward eds., the Study of Spirituality (New York: Oxford University Press, 1986)

Kuspit, Donald, "Reconsidering the Spiritual in Art," Retrieved February 17, 2012, from the Blackbird Website: http://www.blackbird.vcu.edu/v2n1/gallery/kuspit_d/reconsidering_text.htm

McCray, Linda, 'A Brief History of Spiritual Art," Retrieved February 17, 2012, from the EnvisionChurch Website: http://www1.georgetown.edu/centers/liturgy/envisionchurch/45498.html

Ponomareff, Constantin V. And Bryson, Kenneth a. The Curve of the Sacred: An Exploration of Human Spirituality (Amsterdam: Rodopi, 2006)

Von Ogden Vogt, Art & Religion (New Haven, CT: Yale University Press, 1921)

Religion played a major role in assisting some of history's greatest artists not only through feeding their thoughts, both also through financing some of the greatest artworks that have ever been created. Religious individuals commissioned artists with the purpose of having them create artwork in accordance with particular religious ideas. It can even be said that the relationship between artists and religion contained ideas related to marketing. Artists like Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo had no other choice but to work for religious persons in order to be able to make a living.

Although there were a series of patrons willing to pay for artwork, the influence of religion and the fact that religious people had access to a wide range of resources made it possible for them to have the authority and the means to force artists to create works that expressed religious concepts.

Brent Plate, S. Religion, art, and visual culture: a cross-cultural reader, (Palgrave Macmillan, 2002)

Chilvers, Ian, the Oxford dictionary of art, (Oxford University Press, 2004)

Lancaster Spalding, John, Religion and art: and other essays, (Ayer Publishing, 1905)

Martland, Thomas R. Religion as art: an interpretation, (SUNY Press, 1981)

Spector, Jack J. The Murals of Eugene Delacroix at Saint Sulpice, (Rutgers University Press, 1985)

Many artists focus on putting across moral messages through their works and religion provides them with… [read more]


Colonial Development the Progression of the Maturity Essay

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Colonial Development

The progression of the maturity of the English colonies within North America can certainly be marked by the passage of time. Therefore, it is accurate to state that the colonies of the mid-18th century, spanning from approximately 1700 to 1750, had matured in a number of ways in terms of freedom of thought. However, the progression of the maturation of religious freedom and economic freedom was a lot slower in coming, and took more time beyond the mid-18th century -- although the beginning of this progression could be demonstrated at this time. Once the intellectual climate of the day spread into these religious realms, greater freedom of expression and religious belief would be accounted for. A number of fairly important events within the history of the fledgling colonies demonstrate the truth of these statements.

The single most important movement of the 18th century, which had its roots in the end of the 17th century, was the intellectual sensibilities advocated by and pertaining to the Enlightenment. This conception originally sprouted from Europe before eventually finding its way to the colonies. It was a highly secular movement that championed the prowess and capability of mankind vs. that of God. Prior to the Enlightenment, there were few people who would challenge God's reign and his hand in the fate of their lives, as well as in the doings of other people. The Enlightenment, however, spawned "alternate" religious beliefs such as Deism, which held that the power, grace and glory of God was responsible for the creation of the universe and for mostly everything in it. However, Deists believed that after this initial construction, God removed himself from the daily affairs of the people and it was up to man's ability, his "enlightenment," his intellect and his own motivation to control his destiny -- whereas popular religious thought of the day believed that God was responsible for all of these things.

To that end, there certainly was a lessening of the limitation of freedom of thought within the colonies, particularly when one considers that many of the most influential members of the colonists, who would go on to become known as the Founding Fathers, believed in intellectual thought and actually subscribed to the philosophy of Deism. Science and personal achievement was valued significantly more than religious devotion under the principles and ideas of the Enlightenment. Several of the more radical notions that stemmed from Europe during the Enlightenment were available to the colonists due to the printing press, and the movement was able to yield tangible results, such as the separation of most colleges (all of which started out being highly religious in nature) from…… [read more]