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The Irony of Modern Fundamentalism, Essay Example

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Essay

Modern forms of fundamentalist worship seem to me ironic because they are uniformly reactive, and this alone runs contrary to how true fundamentalist belief is usually perceived and practiced.  Fundamentalism is focused on core aspects and creeds of a faith, and this suggests an adherence to the faith unconcerned with social or external conditions.  The fundamentalist, before anything else, believes.  Modern fundamentalism, however, is likely a response to conditions, rather than a religious foundation existing apart from them.  In my estimation, many people are dissatisfied with the way modern societies are evolving, as there is a consistent emphasis on personal gratification, technological progress, and other factors moving the society away from “natural” modes of thinking, feeling, and worship.  Consequently, modern embracing of fundamentalism is more a denial of current ways of living, rather than a deep-rooted belief in a particular faith.

If modernism reveals anything at all, it is the inextricable link between faith and ordinary living.  As with fundamentalism, there is a strong motivation in people to believe that faith is a core entity oblivious to external forces, no matter the actual faith or degree of belief.  Religion, usually based on belief in the highest of all possible powers, relies on this perception.   Modernism, however, connects anthropology and religion in a way that influences both dramatically.  It translates to mankind shifting its intents and practices regarding religion to accommodate beliefs, in a sense, of mankind itself.  If, for example, humanity perceives itself as more scientifically enlightened, it then employs this new idea of itself to reinterpret religion.  It is, in fact, an interesting transfer of authority, as the modernist views are permitted to alter what was believed to be immutable.  This being the case, world events also shift, as the religious beliefs are modified to support or oppose societal actions, depending on the needs of the society in question.

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