Ethnocentrism

Ethnocentrism in social theory of religion when we use a definition that is looking to define and limit the ground-based concepts clear and distinct as Descartes would say. A maximalist definition considering functionalist theory of religion as a part of social theory. The religion thus becomes practical. If we take a very broad definition of religion, we fall into the error of considering any religious phenomenon of spiritual or therapeutic nature as with acupuncture or as some artists who attributed his genius to divine influence. If we adopt a definition from the study of small groups or communities that do not represent the majority social group, will not get a full picture of the religious phenomenon. The field work must be done on the entire social group considering both majority and minority groups and the evolution-diachrony “of religious ideas in parallel with changes in society.But the biggest problem for a social theory of religion is not the breadth of the field to observe only the starting point. We have elaborated a theory of religion based on a given religion: Christianity, in a given society, the western. This starting point is conditioning defective largely a neutral interpretation of religious phenomena as we see today with the categorization of sects that applies to any religious movement that disagrees with Christian orthodoxy. The concept of religion arises as a generalization and export features of Western Christianity to other similar social and spiritual phenomena in other societies, which carries the typical ethnocentric bias of early anthropology as social science. In this way, can not conceive a definition of religion that does not include Christianity. Christianity and the West are inseparable concepts.By applying the Western concept of religion to social structures of primitive peoples or east entered the paradox of Eastern religion, Confucianism, Buddhism, Hinduism, Jainism and Shinto religions but are not themselves moral systems, wisdom about life and internalization techniques., A concept of religion must at least meet the requirement to include religious forms of East and West., The main concepts for the study of phenomenology of religion as a church, sect, popular religion against official religion, charismatic leader (messianism), symbolic practices (rituals) religious ideology (dogma), come from a particular historical experience of a Christian tradition and are not exportable to other forms of religiosity or spirituality. To make a neutral approach to primitive religion or Eastern thought these concepts must be understood within the context of the social culture of the group to which they belong.The generalization, in a subject as complex as this, is the greatest enemy of the truth to which every student should seek the religious phenomenon. For example, the concepts of mana, magic, chi, universal energy or teacher does not agree with their Western counterparts of divinity, prayer, God or Son of God. The messianic idea involves the concept of the Son of God, as Savior only, or renewal of the established order comes through Judaism. You can not apply this concept to the idea that in the east there is the spiritual master or mahatma. Aterno as a way to see it in ethnocentrism, when separate religious language of theological language. Please note that religious language is the symbolic manifestation of a religious ideology. When you take a word ( concept) the language of everyday life and applies to a theological concept, it should be noted that we have given an extra semantic load.Religion, well separated from the theology that has nothing to do, can approach the religious phenomenon from a neutral approach. The theology is discourse about God, while religion is an attitude, a belief, a prayer. A theologian is a grammarian of religious language. The metaphysical serve much but say nothing.,. The language of theology without the religious experience becomes empty. Another attempt of empirical studies of religious phenomena to find a religious concept that includes East and West is to reduce the concept of religion to moral conduct within the meaning of life style or ethical behavior. Other authors reduce religion to psychological function, of the myths including religion in the emotional field. Because it is so difficult to define what is meant by religion would be better to dispense with this term and refer to religion as “phenomenology of religion” or “religious phenomenon.”