Theories of Religion Essay

Submitted By Jaime22
Words: 891
Pages: 4

Jaime Sanclemente
Theories of Religion
Dr. Phil Theories of Religion German philosopher Ludwig Feuerbach was by far the most influential and realistic thinkers of the nineteenth century. In both of his books, The Essence of Christianity and The Essence of Religion, Feuerbach explained how religion was a project based on the wishes and needs of humanity. According to Ludwig Feuerbach, people feel hopeless when they are faced with problems life gives them. For example when I get stressed over a major test I have to present, I then feel like I am helpless and immediately think I’m going to fail that test. Many people feel this way when it comes to human nature. When people get to this stage in their lives, they then imagine a power that can help them in most cases what is known as praying. In my case when I feel lost in life or feel like I am going through a huge struggle, I always pray to my lord because I feel that he is always there for me when I need him and deep inside it makes me feel better about myself. We picture god the way we want him to be even though it’s necessarily not true. Feuerbach believes religion is a form of wishing, people try to find great things in heaven that they cannot find on earth but it is all a simple imagination. He also believed that when people become powerful or problem less, they then push religion away and replace them with other things such as technology or politics. Karl Marx, one of Feuerbach’s younger contemporary also added to his theory of human needs. He stated that man makes religion, and that religion does not make man. He also adds that religion is the self-esteem of people who have not yet found themselves or has already lost themselves again. Both of these philosophers believed humans projected or imagined an image called “God”. Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis felt that religious ideas are “illusions, fulfillments of the oldest, strongest, and most urgent wishes of mankind” (Hopfe, 9). I believe that out of the five theories of religion, the theory of human needs is by far the one I relate the most to. My whole life I have always wondered if there was really a “God” that was looking after me and keeping me safe from all danger. When I was younger I tended to get in a lot of trouble and the consequences were awful, that’s when I thought that “God” did not exist because he let me down on that one. However, at the same time I would pray to my lord and savior to help me lift back up and make all the problems go away. I thought that by praying to “God” my problems will be gone and it was the only thing I could do at the moment to help me feel better about myself. This theory of human needs really had me thinking a lot, what if we really are just imagining a figure called “God”? I think that this figure of “God” all started back in the day when people didn’t have the technology or supplies to live a healthy lifestyle. People back in the day felt that they were