For a long period of time, the issues of spirituality and religion have not been able to be discussed in the globalization context since many scholars did not see the connection between the two concepts. Spirituality and religion issues are highly affected by globalization, and also, globalization is affected by religion and spiritual matters. Forces of globalization, economics and technology exact a lot of pressure on matters of spirituality and religion. Today's globalization efforts show some trends in spirituality and religion including increasing the number of attempts to harness religion and spirituality in all corners of life, a larger force in the personalization of spirituality matters among consumers and clients, the enhanced role of technology in the spiritual industry and the concretization of spirituality. The discussed trends have an impact on the relationship between globalization and the religious industry. Globalization has affected American native religions in that it has imported religious practices from the outside world and brought to the United States.
The process of globalization in the United States takes the example of movement of goods and services across the world. When an idea is born from one side of the country of the world, it moves through globalization to the other side and can affect the way people had lived before it emerged. The process of globalization has created now known as the global culture, whereby the world operates like one small geographical area. The phenomenon of globalization makes the world a smaller geographical area where people can exchange political, economic and social events and ideas. A birth of an idea in one place can affect individuals from another side of the world as if they were in the same geographical area. Spreading of ideas has been enabled by the fact that technology has advanced hence people nowadays can share ideas over longer distances and faster.
The association between religion and globalization has impacted positively and negatively on the American religions and denominations. For example Native American religions take advantage of globalization in some areas such as communication and transportation technology whereby they can reach a larger number of masses as well as communicating to them well. This can be seen as a power because globalization here enables the religions to achieve what they could not have achieved before. Equally important, globalization has negative impacts in that it is the greatest source of resistance to the religion since it acts as a haven for the people standing in opposition to the church. When people oppose something, they normally use technologically advanced tools to communicate their message.
This paper argues the impact of globalization on Native American religions can be described as complex because on one side it brings advantages and on the other hand it brings disadvantages. Due to this scenario, it cannot be said whether it is a negative impact or a positive impact because it is a combination of both positive and negative impacts.
The first point on how globalization affected has changed on the Native American religions is that it has brought a greater religious tolerance in the country. The concept of globalization brings a culture of pluralism in the religion setting where it encourages that different religions can coexist together in peace the way different world economies and political settings coexist in the world together. Different religious groups such as Christians, Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam can coexist together because they all teach similar values such as human dignity, freedom, equality, solidarity and peace and stability. Globalization enables them to coexist together by showing the example that religion cam also coexists with other areas of interest such as economics, politics and the society in general.
The Native American religions have immensely benefited from the advancement of technology and technological products. For example, different religious denominations have been able to open pages in social media and also set up websites whereby they can reach their congregation's despite their geographical locations. Many Native American religions have television shows that show visual content to worshippers in spite of where they are. Through the use of technology to reach their congregations, the religions have been able to come together and have a common goal. The goal of coming together has only been achieved because of globalization.
Since globalization is a revolution, it is a known fact that revolutions disrupt the traditions and customs of people everywhere they happen. This is known as creating a backlash in religious parochialism whereby the people who are stressed by the revolution will seek the religion to seek refuge because it gives them hope. The main point here is that globalization caused a lot of stress to people hence individuals began to see that globalization was not their cup of tea hence they went ahead and sought refuge from the religion. The religion gave a picture if stability and security hence people thought they could get the answers that they were looking for in religion. This way, it can be said that globalization affected positively on Native American religions because it was able to direct many people there and the religions increased in sizes because of the influx of people.
Globalization had also shattered the protective cocoon that people felt before when they were referred to by their country of origin. In the United States, people were more proud to be reminded which state they came from but due to globalization, large areas became global villages, and people decided to seek comfort in religion. As one can notice, people nowadays prefer to be called by their religious identities as opposed to national or personal identities. Globalization has replaced the feeling of nationalism with "religionism".
Globalization causes mental stress because of the worrying of losing money, status, jobs and many more things in life. Globalization also favors the idea of material possession hence a person who does not get these materials may be mentally stressed. People who are mentally stressed normally turn to religion for their saving and to have a peace of mind. When people turn to a religion, they realize that inner peace can never be achieved through acquiring material possessions. This shows that globalization has pushed many people to consider religion as an alternative way of solving their mental stress resulting from globalization.
Globalization has led to fighting between some religious groups such as Jews, Christians, and Muslims. Terrorism is as a result of globalization and after September 9/11, Muslims were accused of being evil and the united states government respondent by killing those it assumed were responsible for the act. Due to globalization, religion suddenly becomes a threat to another religion for example Muslims regard other religions as sinners and hence must be destroyed while those other religions regard Muslims as murders and hence must be destroyed. This shows that globalization is affecting negatively on religion in America.
It makes sense to see that past conflicts occurred because of globalization issues such as capitalism and communism but in future, most conflicts will occur regarding religious denominations. So far, terrorists who claim to be representing the interests of Muslims have been attacking Christians everywhere while the Christians want to retaliate too. This shows that the world is about to witness another world war that will be between religions.
In conclusion, one can see that globalization impacts on religions both negatively and positively. Positive impacts of globalization on the religions are that they can use advanced technology such as smartphones and social media to reach more and more people. Globalization also promotes religious pluralism whereby different religions can coexist together in peace without fighting each other. Religions are shown that since they preach and teach almost the similar thing, they can coexist together while enabling their scholars to learn from the ideas of one another. The negative impact of globalization on Native American religions is that it has brought enmity between Islam and other religions. This is because the other religions view Islam as the religion of violence. Access to the latest technology has acted in a negative way since people of different religions can spread hate over the social media.
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Kale, Sudhir H. "Spirituality, Religion, and Globalization." Sage publications (2015): 74-115.
Kinnvall, Catarina. "Globalization and Religious Nationalism: Self, Identity, and the Search for Ontological Security." Political psychology (2004): 741-767.
Skinner, David. "Globalization And Religion." International Business & Economics Research Journal (IBER) (2003): 20-31.
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