Family life and approaches to parenting
are greatly influences by religious beliefs and practices. A person’s religious
faith is usually something that was passed down from generations. Although,
there are some family members who choose to not have a faith or convert to
another religion. Majority of Americans have a faith or belief (Tsonis, 2016). Having a religious
presence in the household can be very positive for a marriage and family life.
Religion is such a controversial topic. It
is in our daily lives and decisions; in what we do and say. William Doherty, a
therapist and professor of family
social science at the University of Minnesota believes that today’s families need the “community ties and
rituals that a faith community can offer, though he decries the idea of worship
as a spectator sport or a form of entertainment” (Berggren, 2000).
don’t have to claim one religion over the other nor do we have to rep being a
pantheist or nihilists but we are surrounded by religion in many aspects of our
lives. At least according to the definition of religion. What is the definition of religion? Also, how
and where did it originate?
There is not one cohesive definition of
what religion is. The definition (or definitions) that I mostly agree with are from
Oxford English Dictionary and are as follows:
conduct indicating belief in, obedience to, and reverence for a god, gods, or
similar superhuman power; the performance of religious rites or observances.
system of faith and worship
Belief in or
acknowledgement of some superhuman power or powers (esp. a god or gods) which
is typically manifested in obedience, reverence, and worship; such a belief as
part of a system defining a code of living, esp. as a means of achieving
spiritual or material improvement.
This definition isn’t partial, it’s
broader and gives depth to the definition of religion (Press, 2017).
Where did religion start? Religion originated with just three basic categories:
Monotheism, Pantheism, and Polytheism (Outlaw, n.d.). Monotheism is the
belief in one God. Pantheism is the belief that all is God (such as the nature,
the sun, animals). Polytheism is the belief in many gods (such as a god for the
moon, a god for the rain). Every religion originated in a different place for
different reason at the time. There is many speculation about the actual first
place that religion was created so there isn’t one actual pinpoint of origin.
The United States is truly a melting pot.
Rich with diversity in cultures, traditions and theories. We are a country
known to dream chasers who want a better life. We are a truly privileged
country because we have a considerable amount of knowledge and experience as
Americans. We don’t have to go too far to encounter someone of a different
ethnic background; to taste their food and listen to their music. I think that
in the south, religion is more vehement. Most likely due to the history of the
south with slavery and segregation but also due to their upbringing and larger
families. Religion is their comfort and support; their justification for their
Globalization has a
big influence on many things including the values and traditions many families
uphold. In traditional cultures, parents are the authority figures who demand
respect from their children, especially the father. Children are expected to
obey their elders and not question their requests’ and conform to their
parents’ expectations and cultural norms. “Even when they disagree with their
parents, they are unlikely to mention it because of their feelings of duty and
respect” (Arnett, 2013). With religion, this may mean attending church, daily
prayers or wardrobe restrictions. As globalization progresses, it brings about
different cultural views. While in the West, independence is what is highly
sought after, “Outside of the West, independence is not highly valued as an
outcome of adolescent development.” (Arnett, 2013). Every culture looks at
another’s traditions as otherworldly. If adolescents from traditional cultures
start to merge or adopt Western traditions there will be big consequences from
their family, such as their family disowning them. Especially because
traditional parents tend to be very closed minded it would be hard to get them
to understand the point of view of their child.
There are a number of different religious
groups and organizations into which people belong. The top five religious
groups are (Major Religious
Chinese Folk Religion (Although not
acknowledged by many)
Religious organizations can be categorized
as churches, denominations, sects, and cults.
Christianity is a
societal norm. Everyone within their spiritual norm has certain privileges that
they don’t realize they get or that it happens. That also goes with race and
history. For example, if the hiring manager, who is Portuguese, has to choose between
a Portuguese woman and a Dominican woman, she’s most likely going to choose the
Portuguese woman. In situations like that, I’ve heard it being called “looking
out for your own”. Is it right? No, but it happens all over, all of the time (Camp,
Sloan, & ElBassiouny, 2016)