Answers to QuickCheck Questions. A2 Sociology Beliefs in Society Studyguide 10 Religious Organisations Many members of society express their religious beliefs through religious organisations, and often the organisation is responsible for shaping those beliefs. - Hundreds, thousands or even millions of members. The hierarchy that is used within the organisation outlines the structure and size of the organisation. Instead, religious organisations are positioned on a scale, with the amount of tension between the group and its surrounding society as the determining factor. According to Troeltsch, the Sect is basically the opposite of The Church…. STUDY. institutionalized religions has encouraged some people to consider less Sources: Haralambos and Holborn (2013) Sociology Themes and Perspectives, edition 8. church is a historical phenomena that cannot continue to exist in modern A church is - A large, well established religious body. They are typically offshoots of an already existing religion. They tend to have been founded by a charismatic leader, and membership tends to demand loyalty to that leader. Haralambos and Holborn: Sociology Themese and Perspectives, Chapman et al: Sociology AQA A-Level Year 2 Student Book. Temple) may still come into serious conflict with the society’s values. traditional alternatives, and sees world-affirming new religious movements as a Take your favorite fandoms with you and never miss a beat. Strictly speaking, according to the various categories used by sociologists, such organisations are ‘sects’, not ‘cults’. are much more individualistic and lack a fixed doctrine, varying with personal They tend to focus on helping individual members develop their own interior sense of spirituality and commitment to God. modernization and secularization. These movements tend to aim to restore the ‘spiritual purity’ which they believe has been lost in the larger institutions they have broken away from. their ideology living in greater harmony with mainstream society - hence Economically disadvantaged ethnic minorities are more likely to join World Rejecting NRMs such as the Nation of Islam. Seeking radical individual transformation or even radical social change is often the main goal of World Rejecting NRMs. Bruce argued that most A belief in extra-terrestrials, and ‘cosmos’ religions. many people feel increasingly difficult to draw on to their public roles for He claimed that New Age For example, neo-Pentecostal groups developed from Protestantism or Catholicism. According to Troeltsch* Churches have about 5 characteristics: Steve Bruce (1996) suggests that the above definition of church may have been true in pre-modern Christian societies, but ever since the Reformation, and especially since the increase of religious pluralism, this type of definition of a ‘church’ no longer applies to organisations which formally call themselves churches in modern societies – organisations such as the Church of England. response to rationalization of the modern world, where the fragmentations made subcultures, however some sects with radical ideology (e.g. The New Age Movement is probably best characterized as a ‘spiritual supermarket’ from which individuals are free to pick and mix those spiritual beliefs and practices which they feel best help them achieve peace of mind or realize their full human potential. Like churches, denominations draw members from all sections of society: they are inclusive. individualism; traditional authorities are regarded with more skepticism. Roy Wallis has suggested that it is more useful to distinguish between different types of sect according to their orientation to the wider society – such as world affirming, world accommodating and world rejecting. Unlike World Affirming Movements, World Accommodating Movements are not obsessed with ‘maxing out personal spiritual growth’, they are more about helping members cope with their ordinary lives, improving their quality of life within in society. It is also a They are extremely individualistic: success is seen as a matter of individual effort. professions”, causing them to have articulate interest and beliefs of Religious organisations, including cults, sects, denominations, churches and New Age movements, and their relationship to religious and spiritual belief and practice 23. There is very little commitment involved with being a member. The main aim of World Accommodating NRMs tends to be to provide members with ‘spiritual solace’ and a way of coping with their ordinary lives. becoming denominations. the People’s It is often the case with typologies that reality never quite fits with the theory. In modern This website uses cookies to improve your experience. Some denominations place more restrictions on their members: for example the Methodists and the Pentecostals. According to Neibuhr, denominations have about 6 characteristics: Steve Bruce suggests that denominations have become more important in society with the rise of religious pluralism. A belief in the power of natural healing and ‘spiritual energy’… as found within Tai Chi and Reiki. are religious organizations lacking the claim to a monopoly of religious truth, World Rejecting Movements typically demand high levels of commitment from members. Sects and Cults: key characteristics 26. Many NRMs have conservative religious beliefs, especially where sex and marriage are concerned. We also use third-party cookies that help us analyze and understand how you use this website. Bruce defined it as a ‘loosely knit group They tend to be more individualistic than other forms of religion. In the case of ethnic minorities, they may also have experience racism, which compounds the effects of economic deprivation. commitments. The New Age Movement is also a type of new religion which embraces the diversity of globalization. A belief in mysticism, clairvoyance and the psychic power of certain individuals. development of religious pluralism in societies undermines the dominance of the Outline and explain two ways in which religious organisations have changed in response to globalisation, Outline and explain two reasons why some groups are more likely to join World Rejecting New Religious Movements than others (10), World Accommodating New Religious Movements, Types of religious organisation: the cult, Types of Religious Organisation: The Sect, Types of Religious Organisation: The Denomination, Types of Religious Organisation: The Church, All My A Level Sociology Revision Resources, The Functionalist Perspective on the Family, Positivism and Interpretivism in Social Research, Environmental problems and sustainable development, Social Action Theory (Interpretivism and Interactionism), Social class, wealth and income inequalities. Ernst Troeltsch (1931) used the term ‘church’ to refer to a large, hierarchically organised  religious institutions with an inclusive, universal membership, typically with close links to the state. by isolating themselves from the secular influences of society. Return to Book Two Activities List. We'll assume you're ok with this, but you can opt-out if you wish. Hence, Bruce attributes the To him, total institution in the form of Such people are typically from middle class background and they have witnessed their parents being successful, but not necessarily being happy. PLAY. He believes the weakness of conventional These cookies do not store any personal information. They have significantly smaller memberships than churches, The membership base of sects is drawn from the lower social classes. They aim to help members achieve their full potential in terms of the dominant values of mainstream society. explained by Bruce as a product of modernity, rather than postmodernity, it is The Church of England does not have universal membership. societies sects can prosper as people have more chances to form their own Start studying Sociology Religous Organisations. As the name suggests, their orientation to wider society is one of ‘accommodating’ the world rather than rejecting or affirming it. Sects have a charismatic leader, who is generally perceived to be special. whereas sects were originally a product of Reformation, but some of them This can provide a sense of not only hope for a better life, but also solidarity while engaged in the struggle for a better life. Evaluating sociological definitions and explanations of these religious organisations. Page 57 DOWNLOAD: Answers to QCQs on page 57. NRMs offer something different, something which such people lack – they make up for their spiritual deprivation.

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