Unit 9 Project
Religion and Identity
Professor Paul Forrey
January 13, 2013
The question often arrived what is religion? There are more than one answer to this depending on one’s culture, identity, ethics and beliefs. Religion can be found in different cultures and throughout the whole period of human history. There is evidence that shows signs of religion such as animal spirits in art and human burials that suggest the belief in life after death. There have been many different answers and definition to what religion is (Van Voorst, 2013). According to Robert E. Van Voorst (2013), religion is “Pattern of beliefs and practices that expresses and enacts what a community regards as sacred and/or ultimate about life (pg.5).
In addition to that, there is the separation of church and state. In America, the right to freedom of religion is very central to the American democracy that it was preserved in the First Amendment to the Constitution along with other rights such as freedom of speech and freedom of press. The country’s founders restrict the separation of church and state. This is due to the prohibition against government regulation or endorsement of religion. According to American Civil Liberties Union of Florida (2012), the standard of separation has been regularly tested. In early America, even after church establishment ended, some state legislators sought to revive the compulsory taxation of citizens to support religious institutions. In this century, public schools were once required to teach the biblical version of the earth's and humanity's creation, while the scientific theory of evolution was prohibited. Throughout our history, sectarian advocates have tried to inject religious exercises, such as daily prayer, into the public schools. At times, religious minorities, including members of "cults," have been...