Reinterpretation Essay

2002 words - 9 pages

Religions do not only relate to the past but also to the future: beliefs about resurrection or further rebirths, hopes of a better future, or even fears of apocalyptic tribulations. In this essay, various religious ‘futures’ will be investigated: the evolution towards spiritual individualism and consumerism, the success of yoga and the Christian speculations about the end of times. It will be easily demonstrated that each of these ‘futures’ is highly controversial – but are they controversial primarily because of the way in which they reinterpret the past? The essay will argue that the reinterpretation of the past should better seen as a legitimating force rather than the primary cause of ...view middle of the document...

64). Almost half of the shops in Glastonbury are ‘alternative shops, selling goods intended to enhance and expend people’s spiritual lifestyles and practices’ and these entrepreneurs ‘see no contradiction between spirituality and business’, regarding ‘their business as part of their spiritual part’ (Bowman, 2013, pp. 67-9). This evolution towards individualism and consumerism is often regarded as having negative impacts of religion, ‘damag[ing] (…) solid values, (…) break[ing] down tradition and the chain of memory, (…) lack[ing] the moral depth and social cohesiveness of more traditional religion’ (Gauthier et al., 2011, pp. 291-2). For Jeremy Carrette and Richard King, ‘the religious’ has been silently taken over ‘by contemporary capitalist ideologies’: ‘individualisation of the spiritual (…) has allowed consumerist and capitalist spiritualities to emerge in the late twentieth century’, promoting ‘accommodation to the social, economic and political mores of the day and provide little in terms of a challenge to the status quo’ (Carrette & King, 2005, pp. 2-5). In this view, religion has been swallowed up by neoliberalism and does not offer an alternative model anymore. In their discourses, critics are thus castigating spiritual individualism and consumerism by opposing it to an idealised past preserved from these flaws – but the reality is much less clear-cut. For Richard King, pick-and-mix spirituality is not a recent phenomenon: ‘in practice throughout history human beings, when they’ve encountered diverse practices and beliefs, have pick-and-mixed and hybridised traditions all the time’ (King speaking in ‘Interview with Richard King’). It must also be noted that nascent religious movements do not necessarily break with tradition, as they ‘often attempt to justify a new idea or a new social order by attributing to it the authority of tradition, (…) through a radical reinterpretation of the past (…) to portray themselves as the true embodiment of “tradition”’ (Lewis, 2003, p. 143). Therefore, it is more a continuum of related religious beliefs than a real opposition between tradition and modernity. Similarly, economic aspect was already present in religious activities in the past and stirred controversies as well: the sale of indulgences (denounced by Martin Luther), the payment of compulsory taxes or tithes to support religious organisations, the construction of religious buildings or statues… (Bowman, 2013, pp. 49-50). Spiritual individualism and consumerism are thus controversial per se and not primarily because of the reinterpretation of the past – but the reinterpreted past is nevertheless an important element of the controversy as it is used to legitimate the evolution or its criticism.
Yoga is a good example of a spirituality-tainted practice that has met an undeniable success, being promoted for its health benefits in the West, with ‘2.5 million people in Britain practis[ing] yoga’ and a commercial market ‘worth in the [US] of $30...

Find Another Essay On Reinterpretation

The Harlem Renaissance-Jazz Age Essay

647 words - 3 pages in the reinterpretation of African American history and culture. He earned universal acclaim as a poet and fiction writer, editor, scholar and teacher. Among the popular short stories he wrote was “The Boy Who Painted Christ Black”. Before his death in 1998, Clarke was honored in Union Springs and in Montgomery for his achievements. One of the most famous and gifted writers of the Harlem Renaissance was Langston Hughes. Mr. Hughes led the

Rise Of Islam Essay

547 words - 2 pages helped groups of Islam by giving them weapons as well as the financial support that they needed as well as aiding them in setting up a central form of government. Muhammad Iqbal called for a bold reinterpretation of Islam that would take the best of Western ideas, but recast them according to Islamic principles and values. He wanted to reconstruct the religious thought in Islam so that it would be more significant in the modern world. On the other

African

516 words - 2 pages reveals sources of insurrection and "reinterpretation". These issues are addressed in various ways by Michael A. Gomez author of "Exchanging our Country Marks" and Sidney W. Mintz and Richard Price authors of "The Birth of African-American Culture". Their reflecting views offer insight to the depth of this argument.In, "Exchanging our Country Marks" by Michael A. Gomez he states the point of the general procedure of which the native African

asdf

1293 words - 6 pages In the suspenseful, tragic drama The Tragedy of Macbeth, William Shakespeare conjures a tale that focuses on the ambition of a Scottish nobleman named Macbeth and his sudden rise to power. In 2006, Rupert Goold brought forth a theatrical reinterpretation of Shakespeare’s novel Macbeth with the help of PBS. Goold’s movie features well-known actors such as Patrick Stewart (Macbeth) and Kate Fleetwood (Lady Macbeth). Formally, the story line

Paraguayan War

2202 words - 9 pages “reinterpretation” of the Great War and it is certainly that. Her position is that the total loss of pre-war population should be shaved down to between 8.7 and 18.5 percent. 8.7 percent is a very far departure from the 50 percent theory, so how does she support this argument? Reber states that “there were four censuses of relative accuracy, those of 1792, 1846, 1886, and 1899.” There was no complete population count for almost 20 years before the war

Freedom Through Faith

1811 words - 8 pages to ethos and logos, and through allegories that introduces a reinterpretation of scripture and a new interpretation of God’s role in Christianity. Paul initially uses an appeal to ethos in his letter to build his credibility in order to make his audience acquiescent of his ideas. He first asserts that “the gospel that was proclaimed by me is not of human origin…but I received it through a revelation of Jesus Christ” (The New Oxford Annotated

Taming the Inner Wild Child

1586 words - 7 pages differences in rhythm and message of text and picture compel reinterpretation by the reader, who is constantly using one medium to better comprehend what is conveyed in the other, and reconciling the two to obtain a complete understanding of the book. Where the Wild Things Are capitalizes on this idea of continuous reinterpretation by juxtaposing plain, minimalistic text with highly detailed, nuanced illustrations. For example, Nodelman calls

Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities: Marco Polo

1008 words - 4 pages Within Italo Calvino’s Invisible Cities, Marco Polo recalls from memory cities he has visited and explored. While reciting his accounts to Kublai Khan, the reader views each city as an entity of its own. Small anecdotes from Kublai Khan insist that he views the individual experiences as small fragments of one, singular city. Kublai Khan’s reinterpretation of Marco Polo’s experiences change the meaning behind Marco Polo’s experiences whether

Cannibalism and Feeding Habits of Dinosaurs

787 words - 3 pages reinterpretation of the bones suggests that they may have actually been below the rib cage rather than inside it, and the stomach capacity of the species might not have been capable of ingesting that amount of material (Rogers et al, 2003). A theory has also been proposed that the tyrannosaurids of the Late Cretaceous were cannibals due to the occurrence of tooth marks on tyrannosaurid bone but this example is subject to question because of the

Presidency of Theodore Roosevelt

828 words - 3 pages McKinley into a new imperialism. Roosevelt's reinterpretation was dedicated to the idea of order in world affairs, rather than occupation or colonization, eventual independence for undeveloped or developing nations once they had conformed to the American model of government, and a world in which international disputes would be settled by negotiation instead of war. The new world order that Roosevelt envisioned was broad in that it would open

All Ye Faithful

1016 words - 4 pages holiness of their religious leaders, and to discourage questioning the faith. The Pharisees believed that God gave the Jews both a written Torah and an oral Torah, both of which were equally binding and both of which were open to reinterpretation by the Rabbis only, men with sufficient education to make such decisions. So the Parisees became devoted to study of the Torah and education for all. Fortunately, their legacy lives on and continues to

Similar Essays

The Kornilov Affair Essay

2120 words - 8 pages .283-298. II. Secondary Sources Ascher, Abraham (1953). 'The Kornilov Affair', Russian Review, 12, No.4 (October), pp.235-252. Asher, Harvey (1970). 'The Kornilov Affair: A Reinterpretation', Russian Review, 29, No.3 (July), pp.286-300. Asher, Harvey (1953). 'The Kornilov Affair', Russian Review, 12, No.4 (October), pp.235-252. Jones, David R. (1976). 'The Officers and the October Revolution', Soviet

Albert E Essay

643 words - 3 pages , based on Maxwell's equations andthe laws of thermodynamics which assumed that electromagnetic energy consisted of waves whichcould contain any small amount of energy. Einstein used Planck's quantum hypothesis to describe theelectromagnetic radiation of light.Einstein's second 1905 paper proposed what is today called the special theory of relativity. Hebased his new theory on a reinterpretation of the classical principle of relativity, namely

Modern Art From A Christian Perspective

650 words - 3 pages , and found none. And so, the questions festered in people's hearts, and over time, it was noticed. It became all too apparent over the course of the last few centuries, with art becoming meaningless and increasingly horrific.The essence of the modern movement is hard to pinpoint, exactly, because modern art covers such a wide range of subject matter. From the random paint drippings of Jackson Pollock to Francis Bacon's reinterpretation of Pope

Neo Classical Architecture Essay

512 words - 2 pages During the 1700s, architects began to turn away from elaborate Baroque and Rococo styles. The classical architecture of ancient Greece and Rome became a model for restrained Neoclassical, or Neo-classical, styles. A reinterpretation of the principles of Classical architecture in the late 18th and the early 19th century, and beyond. This term often includes the Federal style, Classical Revival style, and Greek and Roman orders; sparing