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Touchstone 3: Evaluating the Impact of Religion on Individuals, Society, and the World
ASSIGNMENT: In each of the three units in this course, you have learned about the role of religions in our world. You have already reflected on some of the major approaches to studying religions, and compared and contrasted two religions. In Unit 3, you have investigated the impact of religion on individuals and society, including learning about religion’s role in shaping morality and ethics, as well as ritual and material culture. Finally, you also thought about religion’s influence on government and global affairs.
For your final Touchstone, you will evaluate the impact of religion on individuals, society, and the world.
In a 400-600 word short essay, you will evaluate some of the ways in which religions both unite and divide, using specific examples from the lessons in Units 1, 2, and 3 to support your conclusions, by responding to this question: How do religions both unite and divide humanity?
A. Assignment Guidelines
DIRECTIONS: Write a short essay of 400-600 words that responds to this question: How do religions both unite and divide humanity?
As you develop your response, you should choose two of the following areas of religious influence from Unit 3 to analyze:
Religion & the Individual
Religions & Society
Morality & Ethics
Ritual & Material Culture
Religion in Government
Religion in Global Affairs
Your short essay should include four parts:
Briefly introduce your topic and develop a clear and succinct response to the question: How do religions both unite and divide humanity?
Support your response by analyzing the first area of religious influence that you have selected from Unit 3. Use at least two specific examples from the lessons in any unit in your analysis.
Support your response by analyzing the second area of religious influence that you have selected from Unit 3. Use at least two specific examples from the lessons in any unit in your analysis.
Briefly summarize and conclude your short essay.
Your examples should be specific, and should cite the lesson from which your information comes, using in-text citations. Citations should use this style: (National Religions, n.d.) or (Monotheism, n.d.).

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