Religion Influence On Society Essay Research Paper

Religion Influence On Society Essay, Research Paper

Religion is a major influence in our lives. Although religion covers every

aspect of our lives, I am going to discuss the influence of religion in two

areas. Religion among young adults and Religion and sexual issues. These topics

are large, so I will only scratch the surface by discussing only a few issues

within these two main topic areas. Religion is gaining popularity among young

adults and college students, increasingly more students are attending a church

and many different colleges are becoming involved in religious activities.

Students at Wake Forest University are looking into dorms that will diversify

the student body to educate students about other religions (4). Other schools

have programs where people with similar interests can live in the same dorm.

Some examples are the University of California, Berkeley and Davis Campuses,

University of the Pacific in Stockton, California, University of Missouri at

Columbia, and Columbia University in New York (2). These colleges allow students

with similar religious views to live together. And it?s not just a few

students, there are enough students to fill at least a wing of a dorm, if not a

whole dorm (2). On Monday February 22nd, students and faculty members at Clemson

University in South Carolina gathered to hear what Dr. Eugene C. Scott, from the

National Center for Science Education, had to say about "Adam and Eve, and

creationism versus evolution and a quivering mass of protoplasm." (1). She

stated that "Evolution in its simplest form refers to a change over time,

or decent with modification. Evolution is a scientific explanation based on

observable facts." And that "Creationism simply put, means that God

created." (1). Dr. Scott was trying to relay the message that religion and

science don?t have to be opposites. Like the idea that God created evolution

(1). The Students at Clemson received the message well. Despite the fact that

Clemson sits in the middle of a geographic area nicknamed "The Bible

Belt" known for its strong religious beliefs. In the Pop music industry,

which is popular with young adults, religious groups are beginning to gain

popularity. Greg Graffin, the co-founder of one of punk-rock?s most venerable

bands, believes " when you?re 18, some kids want more then just bland pop

culture , they want something with a little more substance." (3) And that

substance can be pop music with religion tied into it. Violence among young

adults is also becoming a greater problem. More is being done to combat violence

by introducing religion. Jan Arnow is a mother from Louisville, Kentucky who

conducts seminars for parents to reduce violence with religion. Her goal is

pretty simple, "To teach children how to grow up in a world of hate without

hating" (5). To put emphasize her point, Ms. Arnow makes pins out of spent

bullet casings that contain peace prayers from eleven different religions My

other topic, religion and sex, is also a broad topic that I will only briefly

cover. In Blanco, Texas on January 14, 1999, two monks have been charged with

indecency with a child. The monks are from The Christ of the Hills Monastery

founded 30 years ago. It is known for its weeping icon of the Blessed Virgin

Mary, which attracts thousands of visitors every year. Luis Vera, a lawyer

representing the monks, said his clients are innocent and that he is outraged by

the charges (11). Vera also states that the local authorities have not told him

exactly what the accusations are or who made them. It just shows you that

misconduct is everywhere, even in an Orthodox Church. Another twist in today?s

world is that landlords can now refuse unmarried couples leases. A Federal

Appeals Court has ruled that landlords with strong religious convictions can

refuse to rent to unmarried couples (8). The ruling was upheld in a 2-1 decision

by the 9th U.S. circuit Court of Appeals in Alaska. On January 23, 1999 in

Atlanta, GA, the Interdenominational Theological Center (ITC) discussed Sex,

Religion and AIDS. The ITC panel agreed that "AIDS continues to be a threat

to the black community." (7). In Georgia, 59% of AIDS victims are black,

even though millions of dollars are spent on educating blacks about AIDS.

"The conference will also examine human sexuality from a biblical

perspective as well as the behavior of promiscuous pastors"(7). Two

articles by John Leo indicate that sexual values and the sexual revolution are

being affected by religion. He reports that "75 percent of the women polled

said religion is very important in their lives. (9). And that "the growing

trend toward less permissive sexual attitudes in the 1990s is associated with

religious beliefs." (10). These articles also indicate that religion has

been influencing teens and there sexuality. I feel that religion either

influences your life on a regular basis, or it doesn?t influence you at all. I

am not a weekly church goer, but the upbringing I had as a Methodist has formed

me into a person with acceptable morals and values. I think that without

religion, civilization could not survive. I believe that God wanted us to be

good, he saw everything he created as good, but that brings up the question of

why there is so much bad in the world. Well that is a whole thesis in itself,

but God has a plan for all of us. God has a reason for everything.

1. "Anthropological Debate Tackled at Clemson U. Colloquium"

(1999), The Tiger via U-WIRE. 2. Bazer, Emily (Feb 15, 1999) "Dorms with

Themes Become Popular on College Campuses", The Washington Times, pp A2. 3.

Cromelin, Richard (Jan 14, 1999) "Pop Music; He?ll Never Loose Faith; Bad

Religion?s Greg Graffin still believes in punk?and the public?s love of

music.", Los Angeles Times, pp F22. 4. McSwain, Lauren (Feb 26, 1999)

"Wake Forest U. Students Look into Diversity Theme Housing.", Old Gold

and Black via U-WIRE. 5. Riley, Rochelle ( Feb 24, 1999) "Her Goal is

Giving Young People a Chance to Know Peace.", Gannett News Service, pp ARC

Topic 2 6. Blake, John (Jan 23, 1999) "ITC Event to Address Sex, Religion

and AIDS", The Atlanta Journal and Constitution, pp B5. 7. "Court:

Landlords Can Refuse Unmarried." (Jan 14, 1999), United Press International

via Comtrex.


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