Religious Relativity

1028 words 5 pages
Bailey Jamile
October 11, 2010
Rel 150; T/R 1045-12:00


Relativism is the theory that truths, values, and norms are different for different people, depending on their cultural, economic, political and religious backgrounds. The theory of religious relativism requires students to tolerate other people’s religious beliefs and practices, at the same time recognizing their own beliefs and practices as just one system in a world of diverse, yet equally legitimate, religious systems. In todays society we see an array of people practicing, preaching, and learning religion. We find people everyday that recognize their own beliefs to be beliefs and nothing more but we also see people who consider their beliefs to be the truth
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Also, pre-contact native hawaiian religion was very much an orthoprax religion and required for their believers to do all sorts of different things to show that they were true followers. For example, in pre-contact native hawaiian religion, believers would perform rituals such as sacrifice and offerings to the god, Ku. When looking at religion in this sense, I can understand why people who whole-heartedly give everything they have into a certain religion wouldn’t be open to any other religion or belief. Though, when looking at most orthoprax religions, I can tell why the followers of those certain religions would dislike the issue of relativism. On the other hand, in today’s society we don’t really find people who practice pre-contact native hawaiian religion and in America we barely see people practicing Raja yoga. So, we can also say that relativism should be adopted by most people in today’s society. Especially in religion classes. The purpose of a religion class is not to preach and sway the student into believing or following a certain religion, the gist of the class is to provide the students with information and the theory that relativism can help them appreciate the study of different religions. I believe that a student who is learning about religion definitely has a responsibility


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