When reading chapter four of McGuire’s “Religion: The Social Context”, something that struck me straight away was how ethics and morality tie in with religion. I’m curious about the “ethical and moral norms” that “official religions” have. How are these norms and expectations established? How are they different within different religions?
When thinking about the film that we watched, I found it interesting to see how Glenn and Susie would be treated differently within their respective religious community if they were to go against the ethical and moral norms prescribed to them. If Susie were to wear something “inappropriate” or go against what is the norm for her gender and household role, she would probably be looked down upon by her community members. If Glenn were to go against his own preaching and go against his role in the church, he would not be accepted by his community. The rules and regulations set by “official religions” may seem restricting but it is a way to set boundaries within their community. How do the separate expectations for women and men within the church differ between religious groups, and how does it affect the dynamic in the space? Additionally, the moral norms within the church set different standards for men and women, creating a sort of inequality within the community.
After watching the film, reading the text, and participating in the class discussion, I want to continue exploring norms within religious groups. I find it interesting to see how different communities want their members to behave.