The Sacred And The Profane Essay

787 words - 3 pages

The “Sacred and the Profane” by Mircea Eliade, explores two innovative perspective of religion with aspects of the traditional and modern. Eliade draws principles such as heterogeneous in space based on experiencing the world as sacred. On the contrary, the homogenous man is blocked to these sacred experiences, since the world is experienced as profane. Additionally, Eliade discusses the alignment in space allowing the manifestation of the sacred—hierophany. This is the most fundamental concept that I believe is the main focus for Eliade, this concept of transcendence, as well as space including the cosmos.
Eliade discusses humanistic principles of religion while providing a connection to traditional religion, explaining the concept of “sacred” and drawing a connection to time, space, and nature. They serve a purposeful function in rituals and practices presented by the various religions, both traditional and modern. This “re-enactment” of rituals or practices in various religions that people conduct provides them a sense of “reality,” while establishing a mystic bond. As a result, the experience of space known to non-religious man, one who rejects sacrality of the world, accepts only a profane existence.
I believe Eliade is simply pointing out that in order to be real in a space whether religious or non-religious, there is something much more grand at play—the cosmos. For the sacred our world is symbolic, it serves as a plane in which man lives to complete a spiritual re-birth (hierophany). Therefore, cosmogony is “repeated” and the rituals take place in this sacred space. It is important to trail the ideas presented by Eliade, since it provides us a way to maintain worship to restore the mystic bond between man and God. Note that Eliade alludes mainly from monotheistic religions such as Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. In these religions, there are several mentions and exemplifications of scared space.
Taking Islam for example, Mecca is a holy city where Muslims perform pilgrimage. Mecca serves as a focal point in the world for Muslims to gather and in union worship God, though there is much more to it than just pilgrimage. Taking Eliade’s idea of rituals in a sacred space paralleling the cosmos, the practices allow one to align them self by re-enacting worship to transcend. Quite similarly in Islam, Muslims are obligated to pray fives times a day to Allah (God) based on solar time...

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