Religion and Violence Essay examples

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Conflict and violence is around us throughout the world and the mass media has made a huge impact of what we think of violence and the relation to religion, especially in the last couple of years. In addition violence has been considered as being part of human nature and comes from our biological structure of aggression. It is an out let for us to relieve stress levels and some believe that it can be a device of vengeance and a positive mechanism to human survival. For example it is a system for the survival of the fittest and reproduction. Another way that we can look at it on a different spectrum is the way religious beliefs utilise non violent mechanisms that try to diminish the impacts of aggressive behaviour. When we think of religion …show more content…
Historical theories of violence have been part of human and animal sacrifice. Rene Girard has been the most influential to this theory and believed that violent sacrifice is “the ritualized killing of a living being channels the group's innate violence and renders it harmless. Violence is inherent in the religious act because violence as a threat is innate in humans, and religion offers a symbolized way to domesticate and defuse it” . Violence is throughout the traditions of religions and in biblical text of many of them. Violence can range in scale from self harm to destruction of a state or country. This idea about sacrifice has been very much an influence on Jainism, Hinduism and Buddhism. Because before these three religions became distinct there was a period of time in India called the Vedic period and was known as the Indus Valley civilisation. The civilisation believed in sacrifice in rituals. What changes this belief system was the influence of

On the opposite scale of violence or religious violence there are non violent religious traditions that believe that harming others is a destructive thing. However “Virtually every religious tradition contains some sort of injunction against taking human life”. This is because violence is justified through scripture or belief. Juergensmeyer states that non violence can be put into three categories.

One of the most prominent religious traditions