This week we discussed Religion’s power to hold society together, as well as its ability to cause conflict. This was a very interesting, and timely, discussion to have, as today’s society is very heavily charged in both the political and the religious sense. This was further emphasized in the discussion of one of the case studies, God Needs No Passport. Talk of the politics of religion, most notably the Muslim ban that the Trump administration is trying inflict, is always an important discussion to have, and it was a very insightful talk. The other case study presentation, Passionate Journeys, was also very fascinating, if somewhat less politically relevant. It was truly fascinating to see such an unconventional perspective on the sociology and psychology of joining a cult such as this, and I was truly fascinated to see these points of view.
This week was spent largely by me preparing for my own case study presentation on Monday. These preparations are, of course, the most prominent thing on my mind today, as is the subject matter of the book, Sacred Stories, Spiritual Tribes. The everyday perspectives given on the intimate relationship many normal people had with religion and spirituality are very interesting, and I look forward to getting a chance to present and discuss them in class tomorrow.