Religion Shaped AMERICAN& 8230; How Religion Thesis

Excerpt from Thesis :

Revisionist historian often seek to find non-Christian association among the lives of the founding fathers, such as the Freemasons, and Humanism, yet it is clear that these organizations were not dominant to religion and that a strong Protestant ethic still reigned supreme, especially in the language of the foundational documents of the nation.

Fundamentalism

Fundamentalism has in fact created a more recent expression in modern America as churches attempt to "go back to the word" and support the idea that the scripture of the church is divine and unfailing. Though interpretations are varied in this group in general they espouse and return to "family values" via some "golden era" ideals regarding the past.

At its base, fundamentalism was compatible with the religiosity of the people, for both assumed the reality of supernatural power and the prevalence of supernatural forces at work in the world. By stressing such theological notions as the virgin birth of Jesus, the bodily resurrection of Jesus, a literal and physical second coming of Christ, and miracles as proof of the divinity of Christ and the reality of sacred power, fundamentalism buttressed the supernaturalism that has long sustained popular religiosity. At the same time, that very sense of the supernatural prevalent in popular religiosity predisposed many, particularly those whose religious consciousness and experience were shaped by American Protestantism, to be drawn into the fundamentalist orbit. (Lippy, 1994, p. 167)

Fundamentalism has a secure foundation in America, and is often seen as the source of the extreme right conservative camp.

Prayer in Daily Life

The ideals of religiosity in America bring to mind the power of prayer, as an individual tool for
...Though the controversy over school prayer and other public expressions of religion is an outgrowth of modern faith denial there is a clear sense that prayer, even outside of a religious tradition has a link to daily life for many Americans who believe that, "…sincere prayer could in effect channel that sacred power to the benefit of the devout." (Lippy, 1994, p. 35)

Issue for Politicians

Conclusion

There have been countless challenges in America to make and remake its religious faith. The current challenges in the modern world, associated with modernism and fundamentalism or the right-left extremes mark the issues of current debate. Politicians, individuals and even bureaucracies are currently facing extremes excesses on both the right and the left, yet if history is to repeat itself it will likely find a moderate mostly protestant answer, despite the more recent Supreme Court rulings on religious expression, needing to be equal religion will still continue to be a part of the American culture. Kennedy being the first Catholic president and Kerry espousing environmentalism as a faith are proof that the issue will rear its head continually and cyclically in the U.S. into the foreseeable future and continue to shape society in the process.

References

Domke, D., & Coe, K. (2007). The God Strategy: The Rise of Religious Politics in America. Journal of Ecumenical Studies, 42(1), 53.

Harries, R. (2003). After the Evil: Christianity and Judaism in the Shadow of the Holocaust. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Lippy, C.H. (1994). Being Religious, American Style: A History of Popular Religiosity in the United States. Westport, CT: Praeger.

McDermott, R.A. (1993). The Spiritual Mission of America. Re-vision, 16(1), 15-25.

Werhan, K. (2004). Freedom of Speech:…

Sources Used in Documents:

References

Domke, D., & Coe, K. (2007). The God Strategy: The Rise of Religious Politics in America. Journal of Ecumenical Studies, 42(1), 53.

Harries, R. (2003). After the Evil: Christianity and Judaism in the Shadow of the Holocaust. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Lippy, C.H. (1994). Being Religious, American Style: A History of Popular Religiosity in the United States. Westport, CT: Praeger.

McDermott, R.A. (1993). The Spiritual Mission of America. Re-vision, 16(1), 15-25.

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