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Influence of Religion on Developing Societies - Research Paper Example

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Most religions of the world today are usually based on a belief system that acts as a guide upon which the religions’ believers derive their moral and ethical codes of conduct. …
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Influence of Religion on Developing Societies
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Influence of Religion on Developing Societies

Download file to see previous pages... In order to appreciate more clearly the role that religion plays in developing societies, it is important to understand the concept of religion. Religion refers to a social system of beliefs and attitudes regarding objects, people, the sacred/divine and morality. Religion has made key contributions to societal development in the past as it does today. This paper elucidates the complementary nature of religion and development. Research has shown that one of the most significant contributions that any religion makes to societal development is by playing its role as a means of enforcing morality to society members. In societies where there is a prevalent belief in God and a substantial number of the members of society are religious, the moral value of integrity is also prevalent. As such, the resources in such societies are more likely to be fairly distributed to all members of society; this is because those who are in charge of the distribution of resources work with integrity.
This contributes to the holistic development of the society. Furthermore, in a society that is prevalently religious, members of such societies are less likely to be distrustful of firms/companies’ ethics since such companies also have ‘religious’ employees who share similar moral values....
According to Weber, the reformation emphasized moral values, such as hard work, austerity, frugality, and loyalty to interests of the group. These values, according to Weber, were the cornerstone of capitalism, which led to intensified economic development (Weber, 1992). Another way in which religion influences developing societies is through its ability to promote the development of personal characteristics, which promote higher productivity among societal members. Such traits include (but are not limited to): a work ethic, prudence in financial spending, integrity and sincerity (Cohen, 2002). Studies indicate that people who possess such characteristics are likely to be more productive and, hence, they contribute more to a society’s economic development. These traits are also invaluable to social development since they encourage productive social interaction. One of the moral traits that members of most developing societies are mostly urged to develop and nurture is hard work. Some religions even regard hard work as a God-given responsibility that all human beings should fulfill. As such, religious leaders encourage members of their religions – followers -- to be diligent in everything. Since hard work is required to sustain development; religion, therefore, serves a crucial role in fostering development in societies. Furthermore, religions, such as Christianity and Islam, urge their followers to use hard work as a means of avoiding idleness, which can lead to immorality. Because of this, religion is an effective tool in development since it discourages the undertaking on non-productive activities, such as crime and laziness, and it encourages members to engage in productive endeavors. By promoting the concept of honest living, ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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