Religion as the Opium of the People

In: Philosophy and Psychology

Submitted By nikolePasilan
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Religion as the Opium of the People For Karl Marx, human dignity is grounded in human labor. It transforms nature into a meaningful whole as well as man's life. It gives him his life meaning and purpose, for through labor, it gives man the chance to express his creativity. People encounter life as a chain of complications rather than transcendental qualities. Karl Marx found this in religion. In Marx's “A Contribution to the Critique of Hegel's Philosophy of right,” he made a notion of religion being an opiate or opium, and many others. But what does this religion-opium statement imply? For Marx, he divulges that just as opium intoxicates people with erroneous feelings of well-being without relief, so does religion. Religion promises some cure, some form of shelter form human miseries and a temporary relief, when in reality; life is full of suffering, an affliction. It seems that in religion, when man puts more of himself to God, he loses a part of himself, and when he puts himself into God, he detaches from the reality of life. But here, Marx does not mean that religion drugs the people so as to dull their minds, rather it gives comfort and consoles people who are facing difficulties and suffering. The realization of pain and suffering is shown among the marginalized people. Those among the lower margins of human classes are waiting to be saved. Marx is saying that through class struggle, it is where human consciousness is determined. For the marginalized, he struggles materially to find the meaning and purpose of his life. The marginalized struggles to find meaning in his life but poorly does so because he is objectified by labor. Man is defined by the material conditions of his life and man is a slave of things. The capitalists who have the power over the marginalized emphasizes their sufferings. They can do so because they hold and maintain the status quo…...

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