Religious Influence in Western Civilization Essay Sample

Religious Influence in Western Civilization Pages
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Religion plays a big influential factor in the development of the western civilization. A major impact to this development is how Christianity transformed the Roman Empire. The church started in Jerusalem with the twelve apostles mainly doing missionary work, and Christians like Paul were witnessing to God-fearers, people who admired Jewish monotheism but thought the Jewish law was too demanding. Paul explained that they could worship the same God without the Jewish law, and during this time of sharing the gospel, Christians were being persecuted on and off by emperors such as Roman Emperor Nero. It became a worse worry for Christians as Emperor Diocletian called for the first systematic persecution of Christians during his ruling. These were tough times for Christians, but they stayed faithful to there religion and to God. Soon Christianity was made legal and was made the only legal religion in the Roman Empire at the time. This shows how Christians shaped the Roman Empire from being hated and persecuted to making Christianity the only legal religion in the Roman Empire.

After the fall of the Roman Empire in 476 A.D., religious unity was lost. Many different religions other than Christianity start to become popular such as Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, and Hinduism. These religions shaped peoples lives since each of them had there own set doctrine or certain rules to live by. This diversity of religions later causes many conflicts as many of the religions defend what they believe. Also, Christianity starts to get twisted around to becoming more of an authoritative figure to people. The church becoming an authoritative figure is represented when Pope Leo III crowns Charlemagne as Holy Roman Emperor.

This was a milestone in history because he was the first emperor of the west in three hundred years, and technically, the eastern emperor can only make the decision of crowning the western emperor. Also, when King Edward the Confessor died, he needed someone to take over his thrown. The Catholic Church favored William of Normady so he was considered in the mix of who would take over the thrown. These situations show that religion was used for power and authority after the fall of Rome. Religion influenced the development of the Western Civilization in what religions were practiced, how people’s lives revolved around religion, and how religion was being misused as time went by.

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