Puritanism Essay

Submitted By darlrdren22
Words: 1424
Pages: 6

Puritanism Today In a speech to the Puritans in 1630, John Winthrop stated, “we must consider that we shall be as a city upon a Hill, (and that) the eyes of all people are upon us” (Finely N.P.). *This very famous quote from John Winthrop, a famous Puritan leader, shows that the Puritans wanted to be looked up to and idolized, which is exactly what they got. When they first came over to America from Europe, they simply wanted to worship as they pleased. In fact, their view of future America was a religiously tolerant society, and that they (the Puritans) were going to be a big part of making America so religiously tolerant. The Puritans had an air of superiority around them because they believed that they were one hundred percent right about many things, such as their religion and view of God. Puritanism is one of the key religions that shaped America today, and is an important part of society. Many aspects of the religion have evolved and remain in society today in some form. During today’s society, this is evident through common religions, politics, and social behaviors. Puritanism remains alive in American society today. *Knowing about Puritan beliefs is important in understanding how they have evolved over time. Nothing is permanent, and everything, especially something as important to people as a religion, changes drastically throughout time. This change over time is how small bits and pieces of Puritanism are still alive in society today. One of their main beliefs was predestination, which is the belief that God already knows who is going to be saved and who is going to be shunned by him when they are born. Predestination also implies that it would be very difficult to change the “fate” that God has created for whomever. Another belief that they had was involving conversion. Conversion is when someone has an epiphany and, as a result, becomes holier than they were before, as if their soul had been cleansed (Puritanism N.P.). Conversion was a huge deal because the idea of conversion was that if God accepted the change from sinful to somewhat more holy, then, ultimately, his (Gods) plan for a person could be changed from damnation to salvation. In addition to those two main beliefs, Puritans also believed that they were not alone throughout their lives. That, meaning, that they were confident in the fact that God was with them throughout their daily lives. Although it started as a simple belief in God and a way to reform the Church of England, Puritanism beliefs have become very important nowadays. Although Puritanism is not specifically practiced today, it has made a huge difference in the history of America. For example, in Puritanism in American Literature, it states, “The Puritanical strands of religious thought and moral judgment continue to influence, in varying degrees, the social and political thinking in America” (Puritanism in American Literature N.P.). This quote describes how the Puritans are still influencing Americans today. They are still influencing American society in three major ways, religiously, politically, and socially. Obviously, Puritanism had a profound effect on the religious aspects of society, as it is a religion. In the 1730s, three protestant groups evolved from the American Puritans. These were the Old Lights, Old Calvinists, and New Lights (Elliot N.P.). Old Lights main goal was to keep the church open to more people even more that the Puritans did, Old Calvinists were a group of people practicing a version of Calvinism, and the New Lights were the ministers that joined a version of Calvinism. *In today’s society, does a person have to be a full church member to go to that church? No, they don’t. This idea of opening the church was passed down from the Puritan custom that they would not hold that all residents would be full church members. Although religion was the foundation of Puritanism, it has become alive in many other aspects of American life. The evidence of