- What are the various aspects of secularisation? Do you think that fundamentalism emerged as a reaction to secularisation? 20
- India is a multicultural country with a place for all kinds of faiths and beliefs. In this context, discuss various types of religious practices prevalent in Indian society. 10
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1. What are the various aspects of secularisation? Do you think that fundamentalism emerged as a reaction to secularisation? 20
- Define Secularisation (Bryan Wilson)
- Secularization means rationalization of human life, respect for the spirit of science and questioning to the basic essence of religion.
- Supporting to secularization theory Peter Berger considers that we are heading towards a sensible society where orthodox belief is not going to explain our everyday action which is largely influenced by the values of rationality due to modern education, global migration, expansion of democracy and extension of capitalism
- Parsons goes to the extent of explaining secularization in terms of value transformation emphasizing on universalism, diffusiveness, individuality, etc.
- Aspects of secularization:
- Politics: Secularism is a corner-stone of Indian democracy. Secularization of politics is achieved through secularism as a value enshrined in the constitution
- Law: Secularization of personal laws and discussion around introduction of Uniform Civil Code
- Family: Primary socialization function of family now largely carried out through day care centres and media.
- Marriage: From ritualism to registration of marriages. Seeking divorce from courts which are part of secular infrastructure
- Religion: State control of temples
- Decreasing significance of organised religion.
- From collective worship to private worship (Robert Bellah)
- Fundamentalism is a process by which people develop unquestionable faith in the power of religion. Hence, they glorify their ethnic and religious identities, crystallize new ideology and take up arms
- Fundamentalism is a form of recalling religion.
- It emerged due to mind-blocks of people due to which they refused to accept the presence of other religions and have absolute faith in one's own religions.
- Religious fundamentalism is not only a challenge to tolerance towards other religions rather it is also a challenge to the truth of other religions and the spirit of science.
- In religious fundamentalism all the spheres of social life are determined by the writings of sacred text and anybody who refuses to accept those texts or reinterpret the text in their own way would be considered as enemies to their religion.
- It can be seen in the form of strict dress code for women in Afghanistan during the Taliban rule
- The issue of Fatwas is seen as a sign of fundamentalism
- Fedayeen/Lone-wolf attacks are carried out by misguided youth due to fundamentalism
- Cultural fundamentalism can be seen in the form “son of soil” concept in Mumbai wherein in the past, non-Marathi people were ostracized
- Habermas says that fundamentalism makes appearance in a symbolic manner when distinction appears between, we and they. It occurs on the basis of identity difference
- Foucault advocates that fundamentalism is a new form of religion appreciated by millions of populations.
- He believes that expandable and extended modernity gives man nothing other than frustration, suffering and pain.
- Hence in postmodern society people go for glorification of cult, develop unquestionable faith in the cult leaders, conceptualize that it is the only source of salvation and happiness thereby manifesting fundamentalist character.
- Hence fundamentalism is a reaction to over consumption of modernity and the ever expansive nature of modernity. Therefore, fundamentalism is a ''force that makes an appearance in postmodern societies.
2. India is a multicultural country with a place for all kinds of faiths and beliefs. In this context, discuss various types of religious practices prevalent in Indian society. 10
- India is a diverse country with various religions, sects, cults etc having different rituals, rites, beliefs. Various types of religious practices prevalent in India society are:
- Animism: It refers to a given form of religion in which man finds the presence of spirit in every object that surrounds him (E. B. Taylor). Various tribal regions in India practice animism. For ex- Donyi Polo, one of a few surviving centuries-old animist religions in the hilly state of Arunachal Pradesh is home to about 20 major tribes.
- Naturism: Naturism means the belief that the forces of nature have supernatural power. Out of reverence and dependency, man greatly worshipped all the greatest powers of nature: sun, moon, air water without which man's life and living will is exclusively impossible. In Hinduism, still sun, moon, nature, fire etc is worshipped. In Islam too, moon find an important place as religious rites.
- Monism: Belief in single attribute, god or religious idea. Eg. Advaita philosophy in Hinduism, Belief in one allah in slam, etc.
- Pluralism: They accommodate for different viewpoints, beliefs, etc. Eg. Sects in Hinduism, Trinitarians’ in Christianity
- Pantheism: The belief that all of reality is identical with divinity and everything composes and all-encompassing god.
- Totemism: Totemism, the system of belief in which humans are said to have kinship or a mystical relationship with a spirit-being, such as an animal or plant. The entity, or totem, is thought to interact with a given kin group or an individual and to serve as their emblem or symbol. The Birhor, a people that were traditionally residents of the jungle of Chotanagpur Plateau in the northeast Deccan, are organized into patrilineal, exogamous totem groups.
- Cults: The term cult usually refers to a social group defined by its religious, spiritual, or philosophical beliefs, or its common interest in a particular personality, object or goal.it is a voluntary association. For ex- Shree Shree Ravi Shankar (Art of living)
- The presence of various religious practices signifies the presence of distinct religious belief and form of religion in India