Religion vs. Philosophy

Topics: Religion, Faith, Philosophy Pages: 4 (1216 words) Published: June 14, 2007
Religion Term Paper
Philosophy and Religion
"An Idea is more powerful than an army (pg 14, Munroe)."

When first looking at the relationship between philosophy and religion, I found it easier to explain the differences rather than the similarities. I began this paper the same way I do others. This generally involves a profound amount of research on the topic at hand. However, in contrast to the other papers I have done, the definitions of philosophy and religion only raised more questions for me. It was fascinating how the explanations differed dramatically from author to author. I will begin this paper by reciting some of the definitions that I did find. The simplest definition states, "In many cultures and times, religion has been the basic foundation of life, permeating all aspects of human existence (pg 12, Fisher)." Another more extensive definition read, " Religion is not just a social, cultural, political, or ideological factor; instead it finds its power in the personal chambers of the soul of the individual. Within the soul we discover the source of the private motivation that forms perceptions and behavior ( pg 7, Rediscovering the Kingdom)." Together I believe these two definitions give a very clear example of what religion truly is. Religion cannot be defined as something with a one fixed meaning. It is unique to almost every individual. At times it can be vastly different from its surrounding culture. So it is easy to see why it has caused so many controversial world issues. Religion has existed as long as humans could think and wonder. A vast majority of people have always believed that there is a higher power or a divine being that controls the events that occur in our lives. Unfortunately, though, religion and its many components has commonly raised more questions for people. Why is it that wars and international tensions are, almost always, strongly influenced by a person's religion? A person's religious belief has the potential to get him...

Cited: Fisher, Mary P. Living Religions Western Traditions. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Prentice-Hall, 2003.
Hawkins, Bradley K. Introduction to Asian Religions. New York: Pearson Longman, 2004.
Merriam-Webster Online. "Philosophy." Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary. http://www.m-w.com/dictionary/philosophy (accessed May 28, 2007).
Munroe, Myles. Rediscovering the Kingdom. Shippensburg, PA: Destiny Image Publishers, Inc., 2004.
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. "The Holocaust." Holocaust Encyclopedia. http://www.ushmm.org/wlc/en/index.php?ModuleId=10005143 (accessed May 28, 2007).
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