In turn, Islam has also been around for such a long period of time that it has led Mbiti (1999:223-248) to comment that these two religions can both claim to have become indigenous, albeit as later additions to African societies (when compared with African Traditional Religion). These values include the sanctity of human life, human equality and human dignity (Tsele 2001:213). [ Links ], Kalu, OU 2010g. Concepts and Measures," Poverty in Focus, December 2006:5-6. The enormity of corruption in African society in the midst of intense religiosity inevitably raises serious questions about the kind of Christian, Islamic and traditional religious morality that exists in this predominantly religious continent. [ Links ], Rodrick, M 2002. [ Links ], Kwashi, B 2008. The influence of the beliefs and practices of the AICs on mainline and Pentecostal churches in Africa and the African diaspora is substantial (Adogame 2013:60-78). "Culture, Empowerment and Local Government with Reference to North Western Nigeria," in Adedeji, A & Ayo, B (eds. Whilst the resilience of religion in African societies is evident, religious communities and practitioners should build on the privileged place that they occupy over and above other institutions, and respond more effectively to the moral, sociopolitical, economic and technological challenges of Africa. Such values are crucial for the development of good economic and democratic political systems. As a solution to the African Christian moral crisis which gives impetus to poverty and corrupt-tion, African Christians in particular, but also Africans of other religious communities, should approach life holistically, living with a concern for one another as a community, and recapturing the key concepts of shame and honour. Christian news and views about South Africa. "Religious Pluralism and Secularization in the Nigerian Religious Sphere," in Adogame, A, Chitando, E & Bateye, B (eds. Why have Africans, both in moments of crisis and when in political or elevated positions, failed to live up to their religious vocation, especially in terms of enacting sound moral values? They can help their worshippers to access NGO assistance. Whilst ZANU-PF and its president, Robert Mugabe, were routinely intimidating and attacking religious leaders such as Archbishop Pius Ncube3 for criticising the bad policies of government, Mugabe sought to woo other Christians. This same worldview also accounts for the religiosity of the African in political and socio-economic life (Kalu 2010a:11-15). Definitions of poverty are varied and there is no consensus on the definition of the concept (Laderchi et al. In many African countries people who do not subscribe to any form of religion make up less than 0.1% of the population (Koenig 2009:283; cf. In the early days there was a lot of opposition to Christianity, especially from the Roman emperors. With reference to the case of Nigeria, for instance, Agbiji and Swart (2013) have pointed out that religious and political leaders have through the centuries derived their leadership ideology from similar ideological sources. This idea is derived from Yoruba traditional beliefs but finds biblical backing in 1 Thessalonians 5 and 1 Corinthians 4:20. Religion is about virtue and moral values. The Search for Alternative Systems of Governance at the Grassroots, 73-85, Ibadan: Heinemann. It also means to be healthy and ethically sound, and to be in tune with one's creator, ancestors and community (Narayan 2001:40). [ Links ], Narayan, D 2001. Finally, we will end our discussion by giving new consideration to the ways in which the resources of religion could be utilised by Africans as a force for positive social transformation and development in African society. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the J. M. Dawson Institute of Church-State Studies. A stranger, on passing by a yam barn when hungry, can stop over to roast yam and eat to his or her satisfaction. Content uploaded by Ignatius Swart. Lecky has commented on the Enlightenment that “The greatest religious change in the history of mankind” took place “under the eyes of a brilliant galaxy of philosophers and historians who disregarded as contemptible an Agency (Christianity) which all men must now admit to have been . Whilst the African traditional religious heritage remains a potent force that – on a sub-conscious level – still influences the values, identity and outlook of Africans, Christianity and Islam have become major sources of influence in African society. Education - Education - South Africa: From the time of the first white settlements in South Africa, the Protestant emphasis on home Bible reading ensured that basic literacy would be achieved in the family. "When God Says Yes - Who Can Say No? AIDS programs promulgate to both the HIV-positive and larger populations particular forms of relating toward oneself and acting upon oneself that are not based on repressive modes of discipline but on freedom, choice and individual responsibility. [ Links ], Adogame, A 2013. Religion is used in this contest as both a contested field and as an instrument of competition. It creates linkages between social groups that would not normally exist. In the face of socio-political and economic challenges on the continent, instead of Africans rising to the challenge, they resort to prayer. Alongside the building of optimism in the lives of worshippers through the hermeneutics for conscientisation, religion also contributes towards conscientising the religious practitioner to be responsive to the challenges of society. In Africa, religious communities are serving as a unifying factor and as a vehicle for social, economic and political development on the African continent (Tsele 2001:215), which has suffered acute fragmentation as a result of colonialisation, economic globalisation and deepening pauperization. "Combating High-Profile Corruption in Transitional Societies: Overview of Experiences from Some African Countries." ), Religions in Africa: Conflicts, Politics and Social Ethics, The Collected Essays of Ogbu Uke Kalu, Vol. Such a Western worldview, which is unfamiliar to Africans, includes the compartmentalisation of life and asserts individual moral freedom in total disregard of the community. [ Links ], Kolade, C 2001. This principle would enable religious practitioners to hold themselves accountable to one another in all matters that involve moral choices and obligations in public and private life. The link between spirituality and morality, and the processes of immersion and moral formation in African Traditional Religion resonate with African Christianity (Kalu 2010c:84). Development-oriented Church Leadership in Post-military Nigeria: A Sustainable Transformational Approach. The Social History of Christianity in South Africa 1487 to 1994, University of Cape Town, Research Institute on Christianity and Society in Africa, Christianity and the Colonization of South Africa: 1487–1870, Christianity and the Modernization of South Africa: 1867–1936, From Dark Days to Liberation: Perspectives on the Social History of Christianity in South Africa, 1936–1994. Making the Most of Africa's Commodities: Industrializing for Growth, Jobs and Economic Transformation. Harold Koenig (2009:284) argues that the definition of religion is generally agreed upon by scholars of religion: it comprises beliefs, practices and rituals that are related to the sacred, to God, to the mystical or to the supernatural. Tinyiko Maluleke (2010:157) has used the example of certain aspects of the formation of the South African Christian community, in which ecumenical church leaders have engaged with political institutions, on the basis of the concept of "critical solidarity with the state", to argue that the church has tainted her image in society by embarking on such a mission. From the coming of European settlers and missionaries in the seventeenth century, to the establishment of apartheid and its overthrow in 1994, Christianity played a central role in the formation of the country. Distancing religion from how does christianity impact social change in south africa socio-economic and political Development such political power and wealth by... 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