Acts of Faith: Explaining the Human Side of Religion

Acts of Faith: Explaining the Human Side of Religion
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go here In , fewer than 1 in 5 Americans were active in church affairs. Today, church membership includes about 6 out of 10 people. But, as Finke and Stark show, not all denominations benefited. They explain how and why the early nineteenth-century churches began their descent, while two newcomer sects, the Baptists and the Methodists, gained ground.

They also analyze why the Methodists then began a long, downward slide, why the Baptists continued to succeed, how the Catholic Church met the competition of ardent Protestant missionaries, and why the Catholic commitment has declined since Vatican II. The authors also explain why ecumenical movements always fail In short, Americans are not abandoning religion; they have been moving away from established denominations. A "church-sect process" is always under way, Finke and Stark argue, as successful churches lose their organizational vigor and are replaced by less worldly groups. Some observers assert that the rise in churching rates indicates increased participation, not increased belief.

Finke and Stark challenge this as well. They find that those groups that have gained the greatest numbers have demanded that their followers accept traditional doctrines and otherworldliness. They argue that religious organizations can thrive only when they comfort souls and demand sacrifice.

The Equality Act vs. Religious Freedom

When theology becomes too logical, or too secular, it loses people. Jonathan Sacks. Theorists of "secularization" have for two centuries been saying that religion must inevitably decline in the modern world. But today, much of the world is as religious as ever. This volume challenges the belief that the modern world is increasingly secular, showing instead that modernization more often strengthens religion.

Acts of Faith

Seven leading cultural observers examine several regions and several religions and explain the resurgence of religion in world politics. Peter L. Berger opens with a global overview.

About the Author

An-Na'im, with political Islam in national politics and international relations; Grace Davie, with Europe as perhaps the exception to the desecularization thesis; and Tu Weiming, with religion in the People's Republic of China. Lawrence A. Rational Choice Theory and Religion considers one of the major developments in the social scientific paradigms that promises to foster a greater theoretical unity among the disciplines of sociology, political science, economics and psychology.

Digital Library of the Faculty of Arts, Masaryk University

Applying the theory of rational choice--the theory that each individual will make her choice to maximize gain and minimize cost--to the study of religion, Lawrence Young has brought together a group of internationally renowned scholars to examine this important development within the field of religion for the first time. Acclaimed scholar and sociologist Peter L. Berger carefully lays out an understanding of religion as a historical, societal mechanism in this classic work of social theory. Berger examines the roots of religious belief and its gradual dissolution in modern times, applying a general theoretical perspective to specific examples from religions throughout the ages.

About the Book

Rodney Stark. Rodney Stark's provocative new book argues that, whether we like it or not, people acting for the glory of God have formed our modern culture. Continuing his project of identifying the widespread consequences of monotheism, Stark shows that the Christian conception of God resulted--almost inevitably and for the same reasons--in the Protestant Reformation, the rise of modern science, the European witch-hunts, and the Western abolition of slavery.

In the process, he explains why Christian and Islamic images of God yielded such different cultural results, leading Christians but not Muslims to foster science, burn "witches," and denounce slavery. All Rights Reserved. In Stock.

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"Acts of Faith is the single 'big book' in the sociology of religion in the past decade , a monumental effort that both demolishes old theories and creates brilliant. Acts of Faith: Explaining the Human Side of Religion: 1st (First) Edition [Roger Finke Rodney Stark] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers.

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