People with exclusivist beliefs typically explain other religions as either in error, or as corruptions or counterfeits of the true faith. Religious adherents often distinguish their own religious beliefs from superstition. It may be prescribed by the traditions of a community, including by a religious community. Symbolic interactionism, or interactionism for short, is one of the major theoretical perspectives in sociology. We also acknowledge previous National Science Foundation support under grant numbers 1246120, 1525057, and 1413739. Alongside the personal dimensions of worship and reverence, rituals can have a more basic social functions in expressing, fixing, and reinforcing the shared values and beliefs of a society. The term usually refers to actions which are stylized, and usually excludes actions which are arbitrarily chosen by the performers. Examine the complexity of belief and the categories of belief within society. In symbolic interactionism, religion by itself is a symbol, but as this theory focuses on micro level, on interaction of individuals in one another's presence, religion must be divided into many sets and subsets of smaller symbols. Adherents of these institutional faiths are expected to respect or follow these mandates closely, all of which rely on demarcations and rigid hierarchies. In ecstasy, believers are understood to have a soul or spirit which can leave the body. Catholic Religious Experience: Religious experience in Catholicism is accomplished by praying to Catholic religious symbols. There are many benefits to such a course of inquiry, but in general the comparative study of religion yields a deeper understanding of the fundamental philosophical concerns of religion, including ethics, metaphysics and the nature and form of salvation. People with pluralist beliefs make no distinction between faith systems, viewing each one as valid within a particular culture. In monotheistic faiths, references to God are used in constructs such as “God’s Chosen People”. The believer discovers that he or she is not distinct from other objects, other people, the cosmos, the deity, but part of an interconnected whole. This perspective has a long intellectual history, beginning with the German sociologist and economist, Max Weber and the American philosopher, George H. Mead, both of whom emphasized the subjective meaning of human behavior, the social process, and pragmatism. In fact, interactionist are interested in the very basic and building block of society, “social interaction”. ” By contrast, people with inclusivist beliefs recognize some truth in all faith systems, highlighting agreements and minimizing differences, but often see their own faith as in some way ultimate. Both religion and superstition seek meaning in otherwise random and chaotic events. Ritual actions are not only characteristic of human cultures; animal rituals exist as well. Many animal species use ritualized actions to court or to greet each other, or to fight. Conventional religions, by definition, have strong institutional structures, including formal hierarchies and mandated sacred texts and/or creeds. The German thinker Rudolf Otto argued that all religious experiences are “numinous” experiences. For Otto, this meant that they invoked the mysterium tremendum, which is the tendency to invoke fear and trembling, and the mysterium fascinas, which is the tendency to attract, fascinate, and compel. A religious experience is usually an uncommon occurrence in which an individual encounters what he or she considers to be the divine. People with inclusivist beliefs recognize some truth in all faith systems, highlighting agreements and minimizing differences, but see their own faith as in some way ultimate. Symbolic interactionism is a theory that analyzes patterns of communication, interpretation, and adjustment between individuals in society.The theory is a framework for understanding how individuals interact with each other and within society through the meanings of symbols. CC licensed content, Specific attribution, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_symbolism, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universalist_religion, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_symbolism, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparative_religion, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universalism, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/comparative%20religion, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Aum.png, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/social%20function, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Devotees_tie_red_crimson_threads_on_making_a_wish,_and_come_back_and_untie_when_fulfilled...Jai_Mata_Di.jpg, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chosen_people, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_beliefs, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Superstition, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/pluralist%20beliefs, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/supernatural%20power, http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/superstition, http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Praying_Hands.jpg, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religious_experience, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/numinous%20experiences, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/mystical%20experience, http://www.flickr.com/photos/twon/2175925464/sizes/m/in/photostream/. From the perspective of _____, religious ideologies serve to support the status quo and inhibit social change. In religion, a ritual can comprise the prescribed outward forms observation within a religion or religious denomination. Characteristic of the shaman, the goal of this type of experience is to leave one’s body and experience transcendental realities. Religious belief is a strong belief in a supernatural power or powers that control human destiny. Religions view religious texts, rituals and works of art as symbols of compelling ideas or ideals. The dysfunctions of religion:-Justification for Persecution-War and Terrorism. Rituals can fulfill religious obligations or ideals, satisfy spiritual or emotional needs of the practitioners, strengthen of social bonds, provide social and moral education, demonstrate of respect or submission, allow one to state one’s affiliation, obtain social acceptance or approval for some event—or rituals are sometimes performed just for the pleasure of the ritual itself. For more information contact us at info@libretexts.org or check out our status page at https://status.libretexts.org. Definitions of what exactly is divine, and what is not, might differ from person to person. In ecstasy, the believer is understood to have a soul or spirit which can leave the body. (adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({}); Religious symbolism is the use of acts, artwork, and events to create a mythos expressing the teachings of the religion. The symbolic interaction perspective, also called symbolic interactionism, is a major framework of the sociological theory. First, it had to include the mysterium tremendum, which is the tendency to invoke fear and trembling. Although ritual is often used in conjunction with worship performed in a church, the actual relationship between any religion’s doctrine and its ritual(s) can vary considerably from organized religion to non-institutionalized spirituality. People with syncretistic views blend the views of a variety of different religions or traditional beliefs into a unique fusion which suits their particular experience and context. Weaver and Agle (2002) add a measure of clarity by introducing a symbolic interactionist perspective. Unlike functional and conflict perspective, interactionist perspective focus on; micro level analysis of society. Religious adherents often distinguish religious belief from superstition. In mystical experiences, all ‘otherness’ disappears, and the believer recognizes that they are one with the transcendent. Discuss the use of religious symbols as means of representing the ideals and values of a particular religion. A person capable of being possessed is sometimes called a medium. The study of religious symbolism is either universalist, a component of comparative religion and mythology, or seen in a localized scope within the confines of a religion’s limits and boundaries.