Religion’s Re-enforcement of the Status Quo Keeps Capitalists Content

We have been accustomed to religion as an explanation of the unexplained for thousands of years.  In the eyes of the Ancient Greeks, Apollo rode his chariot by day, lighting up the sky.  Any Marvel Comics’ fan of my age remembers the God of Thunder, Thor, (long before he ever grew a beard as portrayed in recent decades).

What to ancient civilizations was deemed holy is now considered myth.  At times we recycle these myths into our own popular cultures, thousands of years later.

This can give us pause.  It makes us ponder as to how our own beliefs will be construed — how will they be seen by a generation to come a thousand years from now.  Of course, this assumes some evolutionary leap or divine intervention to steer us clear of the destructive course we seem to be damned to follow today.

In any event, the leap of faith to explain worldly phenomena in mythic tales no longer pertains to solar cycles of day and night or other natural phenomena.  Nevertheless, religion today, at least in western societies, is fused with the dominant capitalist system.  Christianity in particular, far from the teachings of love accredited to Christ, has often come to justify a holy ideological Jihad in favor of the status quo.

Protestantism in particular, is one of the dominant forms founded on the myth of the work ethic.  It is a theory that each and everyone of us can pull ourselves up by the bootstraps, as any lit course analysis of Pilgrim’s Progress will point out.  This is the root of the so called American Dream, a somnambulant supposition, shaped to stave off awareness of harsh realities.

It was the German economist and sociologist, Max Weber in the early 20th Century, who was one of the early analysts of the relation between the social Puritanism of the Protestant faith and its relation to the birth of capitalist values.  A summary of Weber’s theories, published in English in 1930 can be seen at http://www.soc.iastate.edu/Sapp/ProtestantEthic.pdf.

Religion directly bolstered the development of many European states under crown kept kingdoms — monarchies in which the ruler was revered for their direct line to God.  In the Americas it grew subtler.  Religious values infiltrated the economic and social philosophy as part of what Marxists would call the superstructure.  This is an ideological underpinning aimed at maintain the status quo.

The media with its propaganda, the political parties with their channeling of political aspiration, education aimed at creating cogs and religious teachings of a new life beyond Earth (among other tenets), help keep subjects of power in their place.  These are some of the elements of the superstructure.

Of course religion for many of you continues to be a reverence for the spiritual.  To those of us that are solidarity-minded, that feel the tribulations of our sisters and brothers and sacrifice to help them, religion is a thing of beauty.  Yet it is easy for us to lose sight of the designs of those leading the major religions.

Just as politicians have grown indebted to the business elite that fund their campaigns, so too have the institutional churches become beholden to cash contributions.  They pass the collection plate, in several well known cases of the evangelical churches to pay for the big cars and mansions of the holy high rollers.

In his Sermon on the Mount it was Jesus who said, “You cannot faithfully serve both God and Money.”  Which of these two icons do you believe the mainstream churches have chosen to serve today?

What do religion and capitalism have in common? Find out the answer online and check out the government corruption exposed. You will definitely gain a new perspective on life after checking out the government corruption network!

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