scroll to top
Stuck on your essay?
Get ideas from this essay and see how your work stacks up
Word Count: 2,037
Defining what constitutes a religion is a difficult if not an impossible quest However before determining whether or not certain belief-systems andor ritualized practices can be considered a religion a definition is imperative For our purposes I am going to use the extremely elementary definition from Websters New Dictionary A system of faith and worship In The Elementary Forms of Religion Emile Durkheim a French Sociologist from the 19th Century examines totemism in an effort to draw universals between all religions Durkheim sets his focus on Australian totemism because it is the most primitive culture with the most resources available From Durkheims perspective the basis of totemism is to create lasting societal bonds Totemic tribes are assorted into clans whose unity results not from kinship but from the religious relationship between the members From Durkheims perspective the totemism in this culture is based on the sacred relationships developed by the clans members in addition to some totemic unit which is usually a plant or animals species common to the area If an entire society is based around its sacred ritualized practices it is only fair to consider those ritualized beliefs and practices as constituting a religion Thus the real question is can a society whose spirituality is based on kinship and whose idea of sacred lies only in the ties within the clan and not on a god or gods of some sort be considered a religion The answer to this question is yes Although totemic practices may not be familiar to many Westerners when real speculation is given to various totemic religions it is easy to see the complexity that underlies many forms of totemism In addition when looking at the religions that are common to us Westerners can we really argue that our common religions are more logical than theirs Through the totemic principles of the universe and the worshiping of idols even if these idols do not represent G-ds
@Kibin is a lifesaver for my essay right now!!
- Sandra Slivka, student @ UC Berkeley
Wow, this is the best essay help I've ever received!
- Camvu Pham, student @ U of M
If I'd known about @Kibin in college, I would have gotten much more sleep
- Jen Soust, alumni @ UCLA