The field of religious studies offers a great multitude of interesting essay and research paper topics. This list of religion topics for essay and research paper writing has been constructed to assist students who wish to explore a number of ideas in the field of religious studies. This modern approach to the study of religion, it must be noted, has been variously named since its emergence (e.g., history of religions, comparative religions, religiology), although the term “religious studies” has become the most frequently used designation for that academic study of religion in colleges and universities since, roughly, the middle of the 20th century.

Need a custom Essay? Check the price and Order Now!

Religious Studies Topics

  1. Buddhism Topics
  2. Christianity Topics
  3. Freedom of Religion Topics
  4. Hinduism Topics
  5. Islam Topics
  6. Judaism Topics
  7. Religion and Politics Topics
  8. Science and Religion Topics
  9. World Religion Topics

It is also important to recognize, however, that this purely scientific approach to the study of religion has not yet come to full fruition in the modern university. It has rightly been pointed out that even though it is possible to view “religious studies” as a reductionistic scientific project, this does not describe the kind of work in which the majority of those who teach in departments of Religious Studies are engaged. This may be accounted for, in part, by the fact that the formation of departments of Religious Studies has been intertwined in a variety of ways in earlier institutional developments related to religious education and the study of theology in the college and university context. Religious Studies, that is, was often introduced into the university curriculum through pre-existing departments of Theology and simply never fully succeeded in freeing itself from their well-entrenched and well-funded religious agendas. However, the lack of success in fully transforming the study of religion from a faith-based “science” to a “science of religion” may, on the other hand, represent a failure of nerve on the part of later students of religion to follow through on the scientific program for the study of religion set out by its 19th-century founders because of the possible negative affects such a program might have on religion itself. Whatever the cause, the academic study of religion in most colleges and universities today is predominantly a theological or crypto-theological enterprise, and it finds added support for its rejection of the modern scientific ideal in a relatively wide-spread postmodernist backlash against science in general.

Although attention has been focused here on the development of the scientific study of religion in the West, it must be recognized that it is not simply a Western phenomenon. Such an approach to understanding religion also emerged, at least in incipient form, in many non-western cultures and societies. In an important sense, therefore, it is a global phenomenon and not, as some have argued, a “regime of epistemic violence” nurtured by a post-Christian society and foisted upon others. It is neither complicit in a hegemonic political agenda of Western imperialism nor has it suppressed non-Western forms of knowledge and ways of life.

There can be no doubt that the most robust form of the “science of religion” emerged first in Europe and that it did so largely because of the work of a few “religious scholars” who were, so to speak, in the thrall of modern science and who were able to ensconce the enterprise in existing hospitable institutional structures. There is a great deal of evidence, however, to show that the European Enlightenment was not alien to Middle Eastern and Asian intellectual traditions in conceptualizing and analyzing religion. It has been shown, that is, that numerous scholars in non-Western cultures approached religion from a non-confessional and critical point of view and in the process created a religiously independent basis for the historical and comparative study of religion. These parallels between West and East in the scientific study of religion clearly indicate the limitations of a culturally isolationist view of its development and point to the promise of future growth of the field as a inter-culturally shared enterprise.

See also:

Security Payments

Looking for Custom Writing Service?

  • 100% plagiarism-free papers
  • Prices starting at $9/page
  • Native English speakers
  • Confidentiality guaranteed
  • Pleasant Discounts
  • Free revisions
Order Now!