In his video presentation, Jonathan Haidt uses the metaphor of the staircase to describe the role religion in self-transcendence. According to him, this aspect of humanity is the main reason that people claim that they are spiritual. He describes various experiences of people who coexisted r had illusions that led them to be selfless. One example is Stephen Bradley’s “experience with the savior”. Another experience of self-transcendence is Glenn Gray’s narration of how a warrior can be so dedicated to service that they perceive that self-sacrifice makes their spirit live along with those they are trying to save. This war story, according to Haidt, is an incidence where individuals feel heroic because of uniting with others, a major function of religion. During his presentation, he says that selfish people will not cohere and without this, they cannot achieve anything. He continues to give a wide range of examples of other cases of cooperation such as a college boat competition, the generation of wasps in the same hive that have to live together and cooperate because of circumstances.
I believe that there exists great logic in what the speaker says during his presentation. Religion drives people towards self-transcendence, where one can sacrifice their self-interest for the sake of spiritual desires. This however can only be achieved when individuals coexist and intermingle on various scales as Stephen Bradley became loving and forgiving because of his spiritual illusion. For the world to realize a situation where people will sacrifice self-interest and selfishness, it is important that religion becomes a key aspect of humanity. I agree with Jonathan Haidt that through the Spirit, believers undergo self-transcendence, which leads them to be united, loving and forgiving.
The number of those who claim to affiliation with Christianity is on the decline in the United States. Based on the report by the Pew Research Center, it is evident that the rate of decrease is nonselective based on age despite the U.S being home to many of the Christian population in the world. It is worrying that college students are not exempted from this trend (Pew Research Center). Therefore, when the study shows a reduction in the appreciation of spiritual matters and especially Christianity in the U.S., it raises concern about the future of religion.
There are various reasons that the study outlines as the primary reasons for the matter. One main reason for the trend is the result of religious intermarriages (Pew Research Center). It is a realistic reason because it is possible that many Americans end up not being sure about their future religious move when they are engaged with a spouse who has different beliefs.
Moreover, there is a lack of statistics on both the national level and church level on the number of members of a certain faith (Pew Research Center). This is especially worrying for the catholic and the protestant churches. The Catholic Church is particularly less stringent on those who drop out of the church, and there is inadequate information on the member population.
Several interventions need to be implemented to amend the situation. First, there should be more emphasis by churches on religion especially by keeping records. Alternatively, though not feasible, intermarriage between members of different beliefs should be discouraged. Finally, because the young generation is the future, religious subjects should be made compulsory for U.S. colleges to encourage the young generation to appreciate Christianity.
Clydesdale identifies that there is less passion from college students because of the different life experiences in their new environment. He refers to this as a situation in which their religious lives are abandoned, pursued, or safely bestowed.
By “abandoned”, Clydesdale implies that college students are now fond of neglecting the religious aspect in their lives. To refer to this statement, he states that students are forced to abscond their religious roles upon being subjected to critical thinking by their professors (Clydesdale 1). The other major reason for leaving spirituality is that scholars have recently felt inspired by the need to develop an internal intellectual curiosity that leads them to question religion.
The author also states that students are feeling “pursued.” From the relation used in the manuscript, pursued is used to refer to the tedious activities that college life entails. Many of such accomplishments include managing relationships, finances, gratifications, and many other roles they have to meet while in school (Clydesdale 2). Because of the tight schedules, the scholars rarely find the time to coexist with spiritual matters.
College paper writing service as of the sources also states that religion for college students is “safely bestowed.” According to him, the scholars tend to exaggerate the fact that unlike other activities, religion can be postponed to a later date rather than view it as a necessity at the time (Clydesdale 2). Because of this, they tend to assume that they will resume religious activities upon graduation.
In his article, therefore, Clydesdale uses three terms to refer to the college life of an American student today. These terms are abandoned, that means neglecting religion, pursued, to mean the daily activities that substitute spiritual matters, and safely bestowed to refer to the state of postponing religious activities for the future.
In a summary of their research, Smith and Snell note that there are several key findings that their study elucidated on the subject of the reduction in the number of religious adults in the United States. Among the major findings is that in the latest years, six different religious classes have been noted. According to the researchers, many of the American adults are likely to fall into any of the six classes of religious groups.
One such category is the committed traditionalists, who are driven by their personality for inner moral behavior. The other group is the selected adherents who despite being brought up in religious backgrounds, tend to disapprove the faith tradition later. They constitute thirty percent of the emergent adults and live both religious and nonreligious lives. Smith and Snell also identify the spiritually open, who appreciate the presence of a higher power but are not loyal to one faith. The religiously indifferent category is close to the spiritually open and similarly claims to be religious but do not consider it as the priory in their lives. Smith and Snell also note a different group of adults who fall under the religiously disconnected classification. These are the least popular and have never been exposed to any religious affiliation and no nothing about the subject. Finally, the researchers reveal the irreligious that they identify as the atheist and the agnostic groups. The irreligious are skeptical about religion and could get angered that people believe in religion.
Therefore, the scholar adults have lately been less religious because of other affiliations. Among the major religious groups there are committed traditionalists, selected adherents, spiritually open, religiously indifferent, religiously disconnected, and the irreligious.