Extremism In Christianity

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The topic of religious extremism has been relevant for as long as religion exists. The spread of religious behavior is large, and so are the factors of it. In this work we decided to focus on Christian faith and how it gets adopted by individuals. This confession is very convenient for scientific research because of the distinctive morality of its initial dogma. The concept of love to God and man is associated with selfless behavior and universal acceptance. However, at all times there have been enough fundamentalist movements in Christianity to show discrepancy between Christian principles and actual social behavior of some of its followers.
The goal of our work is to determine inner personal features that correlate with religious fanaticism
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(Cornwall et al., 1986) proposed a tested model consisting of 3 components and 6 dimensions and combining previous findings in that area. First component is Cognition, which is the belief itself, religion’s “ideology” (Glock, Charles, 1962). It consists of two dimensions: one is Traditional orthodoxy – general, basic beliefs of the confession; another is Particularistic orthodoxy – set of beliefs which belong to a particular religious group (e.g., Protestant beliefs, in which they differ from Catholics). Second component is Affect: religious commitment, an emotion, focused on faith and religious values (Mol, 1977). It consists of Spiritual commitment (an affection towards transcendental features of the religion) and Church commitment (a feeling towards religion as a social institute). Last component is Behavior, which is how religiosity is expressed by a person. It includes Religious behavior – basic behavior based on religion’s values (benevolence or personal prayer), and Religious participation – following the rituals and attending the church (Glock, Charles,…show more content…
The effect of religiosity on a person, however, may be completely different in the cases of different religious doctrines. The contents of a religious dogma, perceived by cognition component, can initially contain hostile attitudes and therefore modify affect and behavior towards more antisocial forms. In other words, if a person accepts a fundamentally extremist, aggressive idea (e.g. in a sect), his behavior will be antisocial with a much higher probability than if he accepted an idea of universal equality. At the same time, the behavior of a religious person cannot be defined only by the contents of his religion, otherwise every its follower would be the same (Norenzayan, 2013). This is why the scientific research of Christianity seems to us more efficient: its dogma is based on prosocial ideals, naturally accepted and encouraged by society (which possibly could emerge due to the appearance of Christianity in the first place, but that is a discussion for a philosophic study). Because of distinct prosocial nature of Christian beliefs, we can more clearly observe the factors that modify these beliefs, as they have a lesser range of interpretations. This range became narrower with the arrival of Reformation and overall improvement in public education, as the abuse of religious power and beliefs decreased (Cameron, 2012). Even without a well-defined moral ideals
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