Literature Wide Web, there are new techniques at

Literature ReviewReligion, religious affiliations and rituals are an important part of people’s identity. It not only shapes their perceptions about a myriad of issues, it also drives their course of action, decision making, and world view. In a study conducted by Maclnnis and Gordon (2016) it was found that more religious individuals reported that online pornography addiction is a much serious and problematic issue than racism, gun violence, homophobia etc. There is clear disregard of discrimination, human rights violations, and death that is a critical theme in these issues. One’s own religion also seems to affect how they perceive the religious population affiliated to another religion. Implicit attitudes held by Christians in Denmark were significantly more negative towards Muslim immigrants, while Atheists held neutral attitudes (Anderson & Antalikova, 2014).Religious affiliations have also proved to be quite useful in dealing with adversities. Certain aspects of religion are quite successful in mitigating or protecting against the deleterious effects of childhood adversity on the adult self-concept, by offering opportunities to cultivate a self-perception outside of their adversity like religious or spiritual self-identity (Henderson, 2016). Politics has also been influenced by religion. Religion has always been an important factor influencing political attitudes but with the changing times people are now seen to be moved by cultural issues more. Religious priming serves to be very important in the political sphere. People who share similar religious views like their political leaders tend to vote for them more (Weber & Thornton, 2012)Considering how religion has now moved over to what we call the cyberspace or the World Wide Web, there are new techniques at employ. The Online world provides a place for expanding religious contacts, governance of long distance religious groups, accessing of spiritual resources remotely (Meintel, 2012). Some even believe that religion might have more meaning online than offline (Cowan, 2005). The various social media websites available also provide a platform to showcase one’s religious affiliation. On MySpace profile owners who turned out to be more religious were more likely to identify religiously and disclose religious information overall (Bobkowski & Pearce, 2014). Along with resources for wider spread for religion, social media also provides another kind of platform, a place where doctrines and teaching be challenged by anyone openly, contradicted or even ignored completely, all through a medium that is accessed by hundreds of millions of religious and non-religious people everyday (Meintel, 2012)Religious priming techniques employed offline can turn older Black Caribbeans immigrated to United States more religious than native born older black Caribbeans (Taylor, Chatters & Joe 2011) due to them listening more to the radio programs and keeping abreast with their home country culture in a foreign country. In a study done by Tesler (2015) various panel studies were discussed from the context of religious priming. These panels included topics like attitudes about catholics, gays, lesbians, Obama administration, Bush, and republican support for religiosity. The study found out that religious communication between individuals primes the population and people. Also religious ideas mostly remain crystallized and become important for the formation of a new idea. The source of the message being received also affects the way religious communities perceive the message. In a study done by Nosek and Lindner (2010) Christians self-reported being more explicitly negative toward gay people and more likely believed that homosexuality is a choice when the priming message was attributed to the Buddha (a religious outgroup leader). Thus there is a strong sense of ingroup and outgroup attitudes that shape the way a message is viewed. Research has also shown that religious priming can also promote prosocial behaviour (McKay, Efferson, Whitehouse and Fehr 2011). People can be driven to be a Good Samaritan, be kind, compassionate. Religious primes strongly elevated the costly punishment of unfair behaviour for  people who had previously donated to a religious organization (McKay, Efferson, Whitehouse and Fehr 2011). The ill effects of priming are thus not unexplored by research either. For further research in religion can be expansion can be done by utilising the online tools itself. The coming of age methods include online questionnaires which are highly cost effective and useful in a variety of different types of researches. Other methods with high potential are website link analysis and recommender system (Bainbridge 2007).Many of these researches lack the “why” concept of why things are the way they are. There are speculations and theories but lack of empirical evidence as to why religion affects people the way it does. The studies are often done on highly specific sample populations that makes generalization difficult. There are many factors like economic status, gender, current political scenario that also needs to be taken into account, with clear defining of relationships between these variables that can affect the study.Religious research in India has still been on back stand. Data available about the practices and perceptions of Hindu in themselves, as opposed to other religious communities and religious research on Christians, Sikhs, Muslims, (and others) in the Indian context is lacking. Keeping in mind the highly religious centric voter pool of India, this is a disadvantage. The new voters of the nation that include the current undergraduates need to be researched upon in the context of their extensive use of social media, religious beliefs along with political views. Our study attempts to take a step in this direction of research, studying the thinking of today’s Indian undergraduate in the context of religion.


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