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What is the relation between religious ideas and the economic structure of so ciety? relevant readings: Weber published ‘Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism’ (reading 1) Protestant Asceticism and the Spirit of Capitalism is an excerpt from above The Origins of Industrial Capitalism in Europe The Protestant Sects and the Spirit of Capitalism What he said in Lecture: Slide 18 Meeting 9 In an article title “Churches and Sects” (1906), Weber States that a church is a compulsory association for the administration of grace, while a sect is a voluntary associat ion of religiously qualified persons. oks at sects to extent the argument of the Protestant Ethic, namely in showing that the Puritan sects breed special qualities in their members. They did so mainly by making their members hold their own under the watchful eyes of the other members. The religious associations that he encountered in America served as his major example. quote (pg 305) : It is crucial that sect membership meant a certificate of moral qualification and especially of business morals for the individual.

This stands i contrast to membership in a ‘church’ into which one is ‘born’ and which lets gr ace hine over the righteous and unrighteous alike. Indeed,a church is a corporati on which organizes grace and administers religious gifts of grace, like and endowed Affiliation with the church is in principle, obligatory and hence proves nothing with regard to members qualities.

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A sect, however, is a voluntary asso ciation of only those who, according to the principle, are religiously and morally qualifie d. If one finds voluntary reception of his membership, by virtue of religious probation, he joins the sect voluntarily’ Sparknotes Summary Points on The Protestant Sects and the Spirit of Capitali m 1. spirit of capitalism sees profit as an end in itself pursuing profit is virtuous. turns to Protestantism to explain spirit specifically Calvinism 2.

Calvinism Predestination God has already chosen who is saved // damned ppl want clues about whether they would be saved or damned worldly success a clue valued profit and material success as signs of God’s Favor 0 attitude broke down the traditional economic system, paving the way for modern capitalism Quote (Sects, 322): Only the methodical way of life of the ascetic sects could legitimate and put a alo around the economic individualist impulses of the modern capitalist ethos ” D sects allowed capitalism to be something that was not only legitimate, but als made an individual pursuing economic gain and success as something that w as actually a sign of holiness aka capitalism was legitimate Even after religion became less important to society, capitalism remained he r eferred to this as the “iron cage” Protestant Asceticism and the Spirit of Capitalism This is the quote he pulled from it in lecture, so most likely if he is going to do a weber quote on religion it will be this one: The Puritan wanted to be man with a calling; we are compelled to be. For wh en asceticism was transferred from the monastic cell to the life of the calling and moral concern with this world began to predominate, this helped to created the powerful economic world, bound to t he technical and economic conditions Of mechanical production, which today shapes the way Of life Of all who are born into it (… ). In Baxter’s view, concern for external goods should lie on the shoulders of the Saints only like a light cloak, which can be thrown aside at any moment. ” From Sparknotes on Preaching /

Puritanism (this is what I asked Bargheer to clarify in an email, I will tell you what he says) To understand how religious ideas translate into maxims for everyday conduc t, one must look closely at the writings of ministers. This was the primary force in th formation of national character. For the purposes of this chapter, we can trea t ascetic Protestantism as a single whole. The writings of Richard Baxter are a good mo del of its ethics. In his work, it is striking to see his suspicion of wealth as a dangerous temptation. His real moral objection though, is to relaxation, idleness, and dis raction from the pursuit of a righteous life. Possessions are only objectionable becau se of this risk of relaxation; only activity promotes God’s glory.

Thus, wasting time is the worst of sins, because it means that time is lost in promoting God’s will in a calling. Baxter preaches hard and continual mental or bodily work. This is because labor is a acceptable ascetic technique in the Western tradition, and because labor cam e to be seen as an end in itself, ordained as such by God. This does not change, even for those people who are wealthy, because everyone has a calling in which they should abor, and taking the opportunities for profit that God provides is part of that callin g. To wish to be poor is similar to wishing to be sick, and both are morally unacceptable. Notes from Review with Bargheer: Marx did was economic determinism , vs. eber did religious or ideal determinism but Weber tries to deny this in essay on Protestantism In Protestantism Essay religious idea are only one element, other things that made capitalism possibl e, and then religious ideas were the last drop that made it possible, he thought what he w as doing was not a one sided explanation ll based on idea that there were some theologians that had some ideas and brought them to paper and then preached them to people, and this only happened once in history in one place. For him it made sense to interpret individuals in great detail. I. E. look at Baxter example that I mentioned above with sparknotes 1. Calling every human being has a place on earth, a certain calling, a certain class = thi notion gives something of a religious quality to every job that someone does affirmation of ordinary’ life = everything in life has religious quality, and peopl hould be devoted to it, it elevated human work to a status it never had befor e in human history 2. Calvinism idea of predestination answers question : who will be saved? Webers argument that back in the days it really mattered and it really determ ined how they acted, Calvin had this bleak outlook of these questions and answers, it was decided when they were born whether they would be rich or not, doesn’t matter how they act they will already be doomed, but it really matters to peop le if they will go go heaven or hell, calvin gave them idea of signs, people are chos n to go to heaven, those are the people means well this means people who get economically successful can take it as a sign that t hey are among the chosen one, when people get indicators they try to change the Not focused so much on the material objects they would gain, but rather on t he fact that success was a marker of being saved.

Thus people were more inclined to make more money ,and to make money that they invested it back in business to make more not a people rationally investing in future to make more money in the future, so we ber distinguishes etween venture capitalism , there are always a couple of people who can nev er get enough, but this is not enough to explain capitalism what capitalism is about is people doing rational planning, withholding desire for immediate material needs, aestheticism aestheticism, people just holding out wanting to be rewarded later = weber sa id this was focused on trying to make a difference in this world, they become people who want to change the world they live in this is why he calls it NNER WORLD AESTHETICSM this new spirit of economy brought about capitalism, they didn’t see capitalis happen, it just was a product. Note **not arguing that Protestantism caused the capitalistic spirit, but rather that it wasa contributing The Origins of Industrial Capitalism in Europe In this reading Weber addresses why only in the west is there a “science whic h has reached a stage of development which we today would accept as authentic” “But only in the West has there been a rational and systematic specialisation of knowledge and a body of trained specialists to any degree approaching the dominating import ance which they have in present day civilization.

Above all, it is only in the West that we find th e specialist official, the cornerstone of both the modern Western economy’ science/specialization unique to the West “the same is also true of that force in modern life which as the most influence on our destinies, Capitalism” Capitalism: Economic and Social History of Capitalism What Capitalism is not: “acquisitiveness or the pursuit Of profit Of monetary g ain of the highest possible monetary gain” “Capitalism may actually amount to the taming, or at least the rational moder ation, of this irrational impulse. At all events, capitalism is the same as the pursuit of profit by means of continuing rational capitalist enterprise:that is for the constant renewal of profit profitability. Through capitalism the idea of capital calculation occurred ie bookkeeping “From the purely conceptual point of view, all that matters is that the actual c oncern with the comparison of income with expenditure, both calculated in no matter ho w primitive a way in monetary terms should decisively determine the economic activity” this form of capitalism was seen in primitive forms as far back as economic can take us, but the West changes capitalism completely this is not the distinctive feature of modern capitalism The distinctive feature of modern capitalism: “The modern rational organizati on of capitalist enterprise would not have been made possible without two further i mportant developments: the separation of the household from the place Of work , which completely connects to the practice of rational bookkeeping primitive features of this existed elsewhere BUT the “peculiarities of Weste rn exact calculation is only possible because of “Free Labor” Class struggles always existed, but there was never a proletariat or bourgeois “There is no trace at all of the modern conflict between the big industrail entr epreneur and the free wage worker. ” before western capitalism Capitalism and the Law “one element which is certainly important is the rational structure of law and administration.

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