Pals = Eight Theories of Religion (new edition, Nine Theoriesâ€¦.)
Livingston = Anatomy of the Sacred
1.Myth and Sacred Scripture we have seen are essential aspects of all religions. Yet believers seem to be uncomfortable with the category of myth when scholars apply it to their particular religion. And this is especially true in the three Western religions, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Even Hindus are now upset that a Western scholar would consider one of their great epics, the Ramayana, â€œmyth.â€ Christians never had a problem labeling the stories in other religions myth, while strongly defending the historicity of every story in the Genesis narratives, or events in the life of Jesu, even to the minutest detail. Orthodox Jews and Muslims would be offended if anyone suggested there is myth in the Torah or the Qurâ€™an. How do we deal with myth? Even if a myth is historically untrue, can it still be true in a more important sense? Question: Discuss the different views of myth in Chapter 4 of Livingston, and state with which view do you agree the most and why?
2. One of the important contributions of
Ernst Troeltsch to the analysis of religion is his typology of church, sect, and cult. Discuss what Troeltsch (influenced by Weber) means by these categories and how can they be used to explain the social or communal aspects of religious phenomena. To be able to write an acceptable essay on this question the
chapter on Weber in Pals and Chapter 7 of Liviginston,
Anatomy of the Sacred, are indispensable. (Weber strongly influenced Troeltsch, but the question is about Troeltsch, not Weber.)
These two essay should be four pages in total and double space 12 Pt .