Category: Sociology
A Sociological Inquiry into a Failed Religious Movement

Sociology is the study of the social actions, their courses and all possible effects associated with them. Sociology of religion is the study of practices and beliefs of a religion invoking the tools and methods associated with sociology. This may invoke quantitative methods, as well as qualitative approaches, to conduct an investigation. This study began in 1897 after many cases, where many Christians who belonged to Protestants, were associated with suicide, as compared to Catholics. This was well documented by Emily Durkheim. This study is the one, which led to the difference between sociology and psychology. Max Weber also brought about the knowledge about the relationship that exists between religion and society’s structure.

Sociologists Weber and Durkheim were among those, who had interests in religion. The two of them acknowledged that religion is a vital requirement in society. These people, however, had various theories set to explain the aspect of religion. Weber had theories that were very coherent, as compared to others. He has explained that the people, who belong to a certain religion, tend to behave to the different aspects, which should be first understood. These aspects may, however, be understood according to their religion. Weber congratulates religion, as it has provided education to individuals about the world. This has made people understand what choices to make in order to cope with life. He continues to explain that religion has provided an answer to the question of theodicy. This aspect is what makes people switch to salvation, as it provides answers on the way to live a life and to escape from the punishment of earthly behaviors. This aspect becomes a motivation for people to choose the right way to follow.

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Weber believed that the motivation that is steered by religion has an impact on capitalism. This is explained by the fact that the aspect that people wanted to see the kingdom of God made them choose to live life according to the book. This, as he explains, means that not everyone would enter the kingdom; thus, this brought about capitalism, as many wanted to acquire that kingdom. This aspect made many lose this, as they had to fight for profits after puritans started the aspect of bookkeeping. His main interests were based on culture and individuals, and this is what has led to his studies. Weber, however, conducted studies in all religions to ensure that he got the right answers.

Weber in his studies indicated that the Protestants are known to have a significant effect on the civilization and capitalism that occurred in the west. He stated that the economic progression was steered by these people. His main study, however, was not merely on people, but on the ways, these people disregard the aspect of magic. Weber explains that the idea of monotheism became apparent with the rise of capitalism. According to him, this aspect has led to many believing that there is only one God. Weber explained that Catholicism, Hinduism, and Buddhism, obstructed to the growth of capitalism in the west and also in other parts of the continent. Weber argued that there were reasons why Protestants wanted capitalism. He explained that people could only understand the reasons that led to Protestants attaining capitalism if you joined them. This, he explains, that has led to the fact that Protestants were restricted to spending their money in any extravagant way; a condition that led their money to growth and establishment of capitalism. Weber clearly stated that religion is one institution, which was independent and which could stimulate the growth of the economy.

Weber explains that other religions may reject what the Protestants did, but argues that they like and uphold that economic activities are accepted. Weber explains that a prophet is the one, who is known to steer the change. He explained that there were two types of prophets. Some of these prophets include those, who live the life of being an example to others. He explains that the other prophet is the one, who is known to steer the change. In all these studies, ideas and interests are intertwined to ensure the rise of capitalism.

There are many religions that had come up, but which have failed to grow or were submerged by other religions. A cult is a new association that has beliefs, which the greater society sees as being abnormal. This word is the one, which is constantly used, but many have started to deem as inappropriate. It was used in order to describe the new rituals. These followers are criticized by many, an aspect that was caused by their practices. This has made the greater church to refuse and to disapprove of what they do. Some governments have started the aspect of rejecting some of these cults that have sprung up.

Types of heresy

Rastafarian is one of the widely popular heresies. This heresy is a practice, which is known to have started a long time ago. This movement is associated with King Solomon, who is said to have started the movement. It is said that the origin of Rastafarian is associated to the Nile valley. This valley includes Ethiopia and Egypt. It is said that this movement started in Africa. Followers of this movement believe that their god who is the “god of the sun” is the overall giver of life and that mankind is also the same with him. They call their god Jah, which is an abbreviation of Jehovah. This movement is said to have started when Solomon was the king who ruled over Ethiopia, Egypt, and Persia. It is referred to as an Abrahamic movement.

Marcus Garvey is a philosopher, who is widely known, and who has great influence on the growth of the Rastafarian movement. This is the man, who is believed to have ushered in the movement of Rastafarian. Marcus Garvey, who was a black activist, had prophesied that in the year 1927, there would be a liberation for the black race after that king would crown. This prophecy happened in 1930 when Haile Selassie was announced as king and the black race made him their god. Rastafarian, as indicated by those who believe in it, confesses that it is a way of their life and the way, by which they struggle for their freedom and their rights. The prophecy made by Marvin was the one that is known to have started years back, dated 1920. Marvin had stated that no culture knew what oppression was and that is why the black people would give the world a surprise. He claimed that nobody knew what he thought of and that he would surprise the world by what he could do.

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Marvin claimed that the black was really facing oppression from the white people. This philosopher had gone a long way to explaining that the western part of the world was Babylon. He explained that this land was the place, where the black people suffered the most. He also branded the white as a rejection of the black race. He explained that the black people had to return to their promised land, which was Africa. This prophecy is the one, which was made in the liberty hill, where there were many delegates in attendance. The main reason why Marvin pushed for liberation was to enable the black people to live in peace and in their own land. He wanted the oppression of the black people to be terminated. He also wanted to support the beauty that the black people comprised of and that their land had. Marvin wanted the black to go back to their land and to settle in Liberia.

Garvey also pushed for the transportation of the black from the US to Liberia. This is an aspect that brought controversies, as the leaders of Liberia feared that there would be a revolution. This movement is the one, which believes that there is a god, who looks over them, and that they are united, as one people by him. They also go ahead and claim that people went against the orders of their god; an aspect that led them to face slavery. These people accept the Bible as their guide to life and deduce it in afro-centric language, claiming that the whites made many changes to it. As indicated, it is said that Haile is the one person, who was very educated. Many also claim Haile was a Coptic Christian as opposed to being a Rastafarian. The very interesting aspect is that it is not recorded whether he talked about the whole movement or not.

History, as indicated by Marvin, was witnessed in 1930, when Haile Selassie was crowned as the African king. He was crowned as the Emperor, who was to rule Ethiopia. Upon his bestowment as the king of Ethiopia, he named himself as Emperor Haile Selassie, which meant the power that the holy trinity had. Haile was a descendant of Solomon who was viewed as the one, who had come to restore the people. His throne had been viewed by many as the one from god. This was viewed as per the covenant that was indicated in the Old Testament; the one that was between King David and God. It is stated that God had said that he would liberate his people, who would no longer work and be oppressed. This, as explained by the Bible, states that one descendant of David would help in this process.

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Queen Makeba, who was the one who had the legal power to rule over Ethiopia and Egypt became pregnant and gave birth to a boy, Solomon. This son is the one, who became the heir to the throne after his mother died. This boy was given the chance to visit his father, who after his visit was allowed to go back and rule over Ethiopia. Solomon wanted the kingdom of Ethiopia to continue existing. This aspect made it possible for the religion to stay. His mother, however, changed to Judaism after she came back from her journey to Jerusalem. This was after she was converted to worship the lord of Abraham by Solomon. Rastafarian movement in Egypt is explained in very mysterious ways. It is explained that the relationship between Judaism and Rastafarian is a result of Egyptian acceptance. This is claimed that it became a movement after Moses allowed it. One of the Egyptians, who were attached to Judaism, was converted to Christianity; an aspect, where Christianity began. This individual went ahead to convert many of those, who accepted Christianity. This Christianity was, however, attached to Rastafarian.

This movement is the one, which endorsed Haile Selassie as their god, who they believed would deliver them. This movement believes that the Promised Land where they belong is Ethiopia. This movement is believed to have originated from Jamaica. It is strongly attached to the black movement, and it wishes to hold this movement and to go back to its roots. This group is basically found in large numbers in Jamaica but is also known to be widespread in other countries of the world. It is known to hold too many beliefs that are the same as those of Jewish and Christians. This movement completely believes in God and that there is Jesus. They also believe in all that is written in the Bible. Their only complaint is that this book is corrupted by those, who are from Babylon.

The movement continued to grow and at one point it came to state that the Hebrews were black people. These people believed that Christian faith was an aspect that was not associated with the missionaries. This movement also claimed that God was associated with black people. Any reference that was associated with Ethiopia made those people stronger. Leonard Howell is the man behind the fuelled hatred between black people and the white race. Howell claimed that blacks were superior to whites. Howell taught that the god of the whites was the devil. Another historical moment was witnessed, when the emperor went to Jamaica. This visit was in 1966. The emperor is said to have urged those, who were in Jamaica, to ensure that they had liberated each black person before they went to Ethiopia. April 21 remains to be the day that these people celebrate. One dream that the people of this movement hold is that they shall return to Africa.

These people believe that God came in the form of Moses, who was the first savior. They claim that Elijah and Jesus were the second and third saviors, respectively. This movement said Haile was the living God, who died as a result of sins, but not for the sins of the people. Haile later died in 1975; an aspect that did not auger well with Rastafarians. His death is the one, which is very mysterious. Many of the Rastafarians never believe that he died and they claim that he will soon return to get those who are his followers. There are those, who believe that his spirit was spread all over the world to give rise to the new people, who will follow the movement. There are those groups that still cling to Rastafarian, including the Zion Coptic Church and the world federation, all of which are based in Ethiopia. Apart from their terms that are different from other religions, they still attest that there is only one God, who is the superior being. This movement is reported to have about half a million followers in Jamaica and almost a million in the whole world. This movement is said to be growing, as the lifestyles of people continue changing. This movement also grows from their music that they sing, called reggae, which they claim aims for unity in the world. The followers are said to consume marijuana, which they claim is a sacrament. This is, however, opposed by some of them. This movement is said to have grown with a considerate manner after the famous reggae icon, Bob Marley, helped to spread it through his music.


The work of Max Weber was one that many have referred to as astounding. His aims to explain more about religion and its implications were those that were cut short by his death. This, however, was an aspect that had seen him do a lot of studies, where he explained the theory of religion. His failure was that he was unable to give the meaning of religion. Max in his studies indicated that the Protestants are known to have a significant effect on the civilization and capitalism that occurred in the west. He stated that the economic progression was steered by those people. His main study, however, was not merely on people, but on the ways, these people disregard the aspect of magic. Weber explains that the idea of monotheism became apparent with the rise of capitalism. This is clearly an indication that religion had an upper hand in the growth and rise of capitalism.

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