The Importance Of Religion In Benjamin Franklin's Autobiography

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When Benjamin Franklin’s Autobiography was published in the eighteenth century, it reflected Franklin’s uncommon and advanced mindset during this time, considering that during this time humans were hanged for doubting the Revelation. In his Autobiography Franklin expresses skepticism towards religion and explains why he does not commit himself to one particular faith. However, Franklin respects the freedom of religion and highly promotes moral and virtues behavior. Franklin discusses his reflection on religion and the distinction between organized religions and beliefs that are not bound to religious systems. He stresses that organized religion and sects are more focused on following specific rules and practices, than concentrating on really…show more content…
Many people left their homes in Great Britain to start a new life in a foreign country they are not accustomed to. It is believed that God had chosen them for a new beginning in the Promised Land. As colonies start to settle more and more the influence of the church also starts to grow. People start to form communities and social connections. Even though Franklin criticizes the influence of religion on people’s life, he also understands and tolerates the social use of religion.

“I grew convinced that truth, sincerity, and integrity in dealings between man and man were of the utmost importance of felicity of life; […] Revelation had indeed no weight with me, as such; but I entertained an opinion that, though certain actions might not be bad because they were forbidden by it, or good because it commanded them, yet probably these actions might be forbidden because they were bad for us, or commanded because they were beneficial to us.” (Franklin 55)

These feelings of solidarity formed a common identity which eventually results in the beginning of the American Revolution. Away from the Anglican Church and the English royal dynasty, people formed their own identity independently. They became a
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He soon discovers the religious persuasion “Deism”, which coincides with his beliefs. He was at the age of fifteen when he discovered books against Deism. The arguments which were brought up against deism had an opposite effect. To Franklin deists appeared more reasonable, while organized religion appeared totally refuting. (Franklin 55) The Deism allowed Franklin to understand and tolerate different religion while maintaining his basics belief of divinity. Franklin criticizes that organized religions follow doctrines that interfere with people’s life unnecessarily. For example, even though Franklin respects the Quakers and their doctrines, he stresses that their “Principles against War” (Franklin 108) became a hindrance, not only to the government but also to the Quakers who “frequently” gave Franklin “Opportunities of seeing their Embarrassment” (Franklin 108) given by their
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