Religion in a Multicultural World

Topics: Religion, Definition, Extensional definition Pages: 4 (1286 words) Published: March 11, 2012
In a multicultural world where language, traditions and culture differ from country to country there is one thing that may be deemed to be true and this is that religion is the centre point for most of them. So then what exactly is religion? And how can you define it? In this paper I will be analysing and considering the different definitions that have been proposed by Victoria S. Harrison in her article “The pragmatics of defining religion in a multi-cultural world” and what I consider to be the most applicable definition of religion to date, though there may not be one. Firstly before we can analyse a text we must first understand what the author or publisher of that particular text is trying to bring forward. In Harrison’s article she discusses the different definitions for religion that has been tossed around by different philosophers in the world, she states “there is little agreement about what religion is or, indeed, if “it” is anything distinctive at all. Scholars have sought to define religion so as to identify both what makes religion and what if anything, distinguishes religion from secular social clubs” (Harrison, 2006, pg. 133) she continues to go and state that no matter how many definitions there are; the three basic definitions in which every definition given by philosophers towards the practice or doctrine of religion falls into one of the three and they are intellectual definition, affective definition and functional definition. She then follows this by going into depth about each definition. Reading through the article and the definitions given to us by Victoria S. Harrison and then comparing the definition to the dictionary; which defines religion as being “an act of service or worship to God, a Spiritual being or the Supernatural” whilst James Martineau suggested that “Religion is the belief in an everlasting God” (Harrison, 2006, pg. 134) it can be said that the two definitions link together. Now for a more accurate definition...
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