Religion has an important role in politics. Whether it be the desire to establish a theocracy or the claim that western civilization is superior because of its Judeo-Christian roots, religion often plays a big part (religion influence) in political agendas. The nature vs. nurture debate concerning whether people are born with their political ideologies or if they are shaped over time through experience is a debate that has been going on for some time. I want to argue that material and non-material factors, such as religion, play a major part in shaping political ideologies.

Religious influence in politics

How does religion influence in politics?

Religion influences politics through the political process called “theocracy,” also known as “God’s rule.” The effect of religion on both domestic and foreign policy is immense. It influences decisions made in international relations about human rights, trade agreements, economic sanctions, peace treaties, military intervention/withdrawal, war-making, murder of civilians, and many other issues. Religiously influenced politics to impact education, taxation, and public safety, the environment, animal rights, and human life.

Religion and politics

They are inseparable. Each relies on the other for legitimacy. Religion influence is a moral authority to govern. It justifies why society should act in certain ways and it offers comfort to those who are unhappy living within this world by promising them an afterlife in the hereafter. On the other hand, the political system needs religion as its foundation because, without the support of the people, it would have no legitimacy.
Some clerics are more vocal than others when it comes to how their views influence politics, but in general, there are two main ways that religion impacts politics, which are through public life and private life. Public life includes what happens in the public sector. It is about the policies that are created and how decisions made by politicians impact society. Religious leaders have a public role to play within the political sphere, as they often guide their followers on how best to exercise their democratic right at election time. They also campaign for political candidates who believe in the same values as them, i.e., if a cleric is against same-sex marriage, he/she is likely to promote a political party that also opposes it. So, in essence, religion is trying to influence politics by doing this.

Public life and private life is the other side of the coin

It refers not to what goes on in the public sector but rather how religious teaching shapes personal values and politics. Their religious beliefs heavily impact the way in which people live their lives. Religious leaders are also likely to provide spiritual guidance to followers, telling them how best to lead their lives. For example, some clerics may believe that it is not right for women to have abortions or for family planning clinics to be available here. This is their private view, but if this were to become a political issue (for example, by protesting at clinics), it would influence politics.

The religious politics

Whether it is conservative or liberal, have religious politics (religion influence) an impact on legislation and how society operates. This is good for those who share the same outlook as religious leaders and politicians because their voices will be heard and represented more than others. But there is a downside, too, as those who do not believe in religion may feel that their views are not considered. This may lead to a poor relationship between those who practice religion and those who don’t, such as atheists and religious people.

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