George Herbert Meade's Influence On Religion

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George Herbert Meade refers to religion consistently throughout most of his texts. Specifically, Meade connects religion to his ethics and views of the world, illustrating that religion has had a tremendous influence on him. Meade’s father was a Congregationalist minister in Massachusetts, and was also a professor at Oberlin Theological Seminary. As a result, religion was a substantial part of Meade’s early life and clearly had an impact on his writing. Meade’s views and ethics position is highly influenced by religion. In Meade’s view of ethics as contained in his writings entitled Mind Self and Society from the Standpoint of a Social Behaviorist, he states: “Or it may pass into those mystical experiences in religious life – communion with God. The conception of the religious life is itself a social conception; it gathers about the idea of the…show more content…
Further illustrating the influence of religion on his writing, Meade refers to the Prophets of the Bible when attempting to give an example of a social hypothesis. A social hypothesis, according to Meade, is necessary when making moral judgments. Meade states that when creating a social hypothesis, the only answer is to take into account all the interests that are involved. Meade’s example of the Prophets creating a community in which all men were brothers further shows how Meade is heavily influenced by religion. Meade believes the Prophets took all of man’s needs into consideration when creating this community and, therefore, were able to make a moral judgment by way of their hypothesis. It is important to note that of all possible examples, Meade chose the prophets to hammer home his point, showing the influence the Prophets had on him, his writings and his
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