Developing Religious Faith: an Expression of Rationalising Sufferring
Based on the theoretical premises provided by various scholars in the light of anthropological thought, the focus of the research paper is on the functional aspect of religion and its social function during crisis situations, like ill-health, to be precise. Religion often provides a realm of explanation with different subjectivity of each individual.
AIM: Thus, the aim of the present research paper is to understand how people develop their belief and faith in the institution of religion and how it later becomes a repository of health seeking behaviour among them.
METHODOLOGY: The research paper specifically focuses on the Sikhs residing in the Amritsar city of state of Punjab in India. The data were collected through in-depth interviews with 100 respondents (50 males and 50 females).
RESULTS AND FINDINGS: The religious identity is a sense of who one is and how one relates to one's own religion is a result of the dynamic interaction with the significant others, including direct interaction with other people or through their writings. For the respondents, religion was a source of moral existence, a system of putting checks and control on behaviour and mannerisms, a source of survival and source of identity.
CONCLUSION: Religion not only provides explanation for illness causation but also provides an elucidation on way towards attaining healing. Such beliefs and practices further get cemented through the actions, characters and teachings of the Sikh Gurus as mentioned in the Holy Book of Guru Granth Sahib. Events, like an illness experience, are often interpreted in the backdrop of religious beliefs and worldview to give some kind of semblance or how to overcome such situations.
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