The article, Weber argues that the religious principles

The
article: “The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism” focuses on Weber’s
study about the connection between the ethics established by Protestantism and
the effects it had on the essence of modern capitalism. Through the article,
Weber argues that the religious principles of the different groups such as
those like the Calvinists have played a role in molding the spirit of
capitalism.

He
first observes the connection in being a Protestant and being involved in the
capitalist business and states that he intends to explore the fields of
religion as a possible cause for the growth of the modern economic conditions.
Weber contends that the contemporary spirit of capitalism views profit/money as
a means , and the following profit as good and righteous. Weber’s aim is to
comprehend the origins of the spirit. He then turns to the idea of
Protestantism for a possible explanation. According to Weber, Protestantism
gives an idea of the concept of “calling,” thus gives the activity a religious
character. While essential, this idea can’t explain alone the motivation to
pursue gains. A branch of Protestantism, known as Calvinism has proven to
provide the necessary explanations for the current state of modern capitalism.
Through his study, Weber states that Calvinists believe in the idea of
predestination, that God has already identified who is damned and saved. As the
branch of Calvinism progressed, there was a deep mental need for signs about
whether one was mainly saved, and that Calvinists looked to their achievement
in the activity to look for those signs.

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Therefore,
the Calvinists then realized the value of material achievements and success as
the sign for the favor of God. Other religious groups such as the Pietists, Baptists,
and the Methodists all had the same attitudes but to a lower level. It is
argued through Weber’s study that the new attitude towards material success and
profit have broken the usual system of the economy which then opened the way
for the contemporary condition of capitalism. But then, once the idea of
capitalism began, the values of the Protestant was no longer needed, and their
ethic exercised and enlivened the idea of the contemporary capitalism. The
economic status of the modern capitalists was now sealed into the life of
capitalism because it has become beneficial for the contemporary economic
process.

However,
it is clarified that it is not Protestantism which caused the capitalistic
growth, rather, that the religion contributed to the progress. Weber recognized
that capitalism influenced the progress of the religious notions. Through his
accounts, it was shown that the Protestants were found to have a stronger
tendency to develop the economic system more than the Catholics have done. The
task is to study the different religions and to discover what might have been
the origins of the economic behavior. An explanation is that the Catholics were
found to not have believed in worldly materials as compared to the Protestants
and are unresponsive to any form of material gain.

In the textbook, page 550 discussed Max Weber’s
belief that the Protestant Reformation

 

together
with other factors led to the rise in the capitalism development. He claims that
the

 

religion
change set up the necessary conditions for capitalism to grow. People looked at
worldly

 

fortune
as a sign from God that they were going to heaven. He, like Marx, had a negative
view of

 

capitalism,
but he reasoned that capitalism created an iron cage and eats at the soul of people
and

 

living
life.

 

Weber’s
writing has essential effects on how religions are viewed. Weber does not
simply imply that religion is on its own just to see what it means to its
followers and founders. For the said writer, religion has other functions.
Religion has created wider societal values and is instrumental in the creation
of institutions in the social sector which is completely irrelevant to its own
ends and goals. Religion has a reproductive power and that its influence must
be studied in a manner which seems to be disconnected to its religious
principles, for example, the creation of economic establishments.