Religion and Identity essay

Religionand Identity

Inmy opinion, identity refers to internal and external factors thatdefine an individual. Internal factors include character, name,qualities as well as beliefs. On the other hand, external factorsinclude environment, friends as well as situations. Therefore, anindividual can have multiple identities. As a result, someone`sidentity can change when factors change. One`s identity defines theirsituation, a future prediction as well as social status. Individualidentity is majorly determined by choices people make as well asaspects that one cannot change such as background. Social contextscan make an individual identity contradictory. It happens whenpersonal viewpoints are dependent on these contexts.

Religionaffects my individual life through influencing feeling, mental healthas well as behavior. Majorly, each religion has stipulated beliefsthat single out values. These values define and guide a person onwhat is right and what is wrong. Therefore, a believer in anyreligion is identified by beliefs as well as a constant struggle todo what is religiously right. That struggle in doing affects one`scharacter, feelings about things and actions as well as enhancingmental health. Religion helps me acquire a good character as well asmanaging human crisis and individual identity.

Sincereligion serves as the manual for goodness and truth, adjusting one`sbehavior best serves to suit the society. An individual with goodcharacter not only serves as a role model but also sets the standardsthat people follow. As a result, religion enhances peace to peoplearound me and gives me a highlight of good the moral values that Ishould follow. Peace is brought about by knowledge and expectationthat all is well as long as good values are upheld. Therefore,religion creates people`s way of living, beliefs as well asidentifying truth through guidelines of right and wrong.

Understandingoneself is a book with repetitive chapters and it ends with an end oflife. It is so majorly because individual`s identity is subject tochange under circumstances of context. Therefore, one cannot predictimmediate next step as there is room for flexibility and change ofplans. Sitting back in retrospection and analyzing reactions over asituation helps me understand my nature better. Hindsight alsoidentifies character, beliefs and values as one tries to justifytheir actions. I have also learned my identity through peopleespecially friends and family with whom I spend a longer time. People`s descriptions may not be accurate but give a descriptionclose to the truth as it is often based on actions or reactions.

Myidentity ranges from my name, gender, origin, religion, character,beliefs, and values that I exhibit on a day to day life. Being ayoung male from a Chinese origin suits physical descriptions.However, my character, beliefs and values affect what I do and how Ifeel about various things. In addition, academic level and externalexperiences may add to reasons as to why I do things the way I dothem. It is a support of what I believe in as well as what I believeis right.

Myfriends make me feel real as they give me an opportunity to remaintrue to myself without pretense. It is this nature of my characterthat gives me my identity. My identity, however, may change dependingon the diverse contexts and different environments I am exposed to.That way, there is a need to appreciate that I have multipleidentities that show up depending on situations.

WhenI joined a school, I could not help but mingle with cohorts from adifferent background, religious beliefs as well as traditions. It isduring this time that I realized people have a different way ofseeing things. At one point in upper grades, my friends through peerpressure would convince me to sneak out of school, skip classes, playtricks on others and all these highly contradicted my beliefs. I wasa believer of being in the right place at the right time as well asdoing justice to others. To me, these plans were not ethical buteither way sometimes I would join in to feel placed. In other cases,I would join as it made my life unique and enjoyable for the moment.

Thegreatest social pressure that has faced hit me when I joined college.Coming from China to the United States, I was hit by culture shock.People had a different way of living, different types of food to eatas well as beliefs. At first, I felt misplaced and though I wouldnever settle. I had a hard time getting used to American culture thatis different from Chinese culture. Some things happen to be taboosfrom my original culture. Through my stay in college, I havewitnessed people being pressured to change their identity andreligious beliefs. It was a way of getting absorbed in modernization.

Insome cases, they would change their beliefs believing that the otherculture is more superior to what they are used to. In such instances,the environmental factors force individual to change their identityand in extreme cases their religious beliefs. That way they are ableto fit in groups of their peers.

WhenI was faced with the social pressure I had to succumb to change inmost cases. It was the best thing for me to do as it helped me tocope with a new culture, changes and appreciate that difference doesnot mean that one thing is wrong while the other is right. Change isinevitable at some points in life. I realized that changing andappreciating other people`s culture would make my stay in Americamore comfortable. At the same time, I realized that appreciating thediverse cultures of other people will help me adapt to the newenvironment easily. However, I managed to resist some changesespecially those interfering with my identity and those that make mymoral values be compromised. That way I retain what I believe isright especially in terms of character.

Peoplewould like others to change and join their beliefs as well as theirculture because they believe that it is the best. That way, they dragfriends and peers to join them in doing what they think areprestigious at the cost of dropping individually beliefs. It is alsopleasurable to have recruits in one`s way of doing things asmanipulating people to see things at one`s point of view bringspleasure and makes one continue believing in their culture more.However, others would pressure people to change out of malice anddesire to see different identities in them. Such cases are rare,though. Changes may also be made to someone to make their stay in acertain environment easy. In other situations, a cohort may make uptheir lifestyle through modifying existing cultural beliefs. Thatway, one would be expected to change their beliefs and identity tofit in that group.