Tradition

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The word tradition comes from the Latin word traditio which means "to hand down" or "to hand over." It is used in a number of ways in the English language:

  1. A meme; custom or practice taught by one generation to another, often orally. For example, we can speak of the tradition of sending birth announcements.
  2. A set of customs or practices. For example, we can speak of Christmas traditions.
  3. A broad religious movement made up of religious denominations or church bodies that have a common history, customs, culture, and, to some extent, body of teachings. For example, we can speak of Islam's Sufi tradition or Christianity's Lutheran tradition.

However, on a more basic theoretical level, tradition(s) can be seen as information or composed of information. For that which is brought into the present from the past, in a particular societal context, is information. This is even more fundamental than particular acts or practices even if repeated over a long sequence of time. For such acts or practices, once performed, disappear unless they have been transformed into some manner of communicable information.

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[edit] Traditions and customs

A tradition is a story or a custom that is memorized and passed down from generation to generation, originally without the need for a writing system. Tools to aid this process include poetic devices such as rhyme and alliteration. The stories thus preserved are also referred to as tradition, or as part of an oral tradition. For example, it is now a tradition to have a Christmas tree to celebrate Christmas.

Although traditions are often presumed to be ancient, unalterable, and deeply important, they are often much less "natural" than is often presumed. Many traditions have been deliberately invented for one reason or another, often to highlight or enhance the importance of a certain institution. Traditions are also frequently changed to suit the needs of the day, and the changes quickly become accepted as a part of the ancient tradition. A famous book on the subject is The Invention of Tradition, edited by Eric Hobsbawm and Terence Ranger. tradition is a custom in which people sex naked eah other Some examples include "the invention of tradition" in Africa and other colonial holdings by the occupying forces. Requiring legitimacy, the colonial power would often invent a "tradition" which they could use to legitimize their own position. For example, a certain succession to a chiefdom might be recognized by a colonial power as traditional in order to favour their own favourite candidates for the job. Often these inventions were based in some form of tradition, but were grossly exaggerated, distorted, or biased toward a particular interpretation.

Other traditions that have been altered through the years include various religious festivals such as Christmas. The actual date of Jesus' birth does not coincide with December 25 as in the Western Church. This was a convenient day for it to be held on so as to capitalize on the popularity of traditional solstice celebrations.

[edit] Philosophical tradition

The idea of tradition is important in philosophy. Twentieth century philosophy is often divided between an 'analytic' tradition, dominant in Anglophone and Scandinavian countries, and a 'continental' tradition, dominant in German and Romance speaking Europe. Increasingly central to continental philosophy is the project of deconstructing what its proponents, following Martin Heidegger, call 'the tradition', which began with Plato and Aristotle. In contrast, some continental philosophers - most notably, Hans-Georg Gadamer - have attempted to rehabilitate the tradition of Aristotelianism. This move has been replicated within analytic philosophy by Alasdair MacIntyre. However, MacIntyre has himself deconstructed the idea of 'the tradition', instead posing Aristotelianism as one philosophical tradition in rivalry with others.

[edit] Traditionalism

In the Roman Catholic Church, traditionalism is the doctrine that Sacred Tradition holds equal authority to Holy Scripture. In the Orthodox Church, scripture is considered to be the core constituent of a larger tradition. These views are often condemned as heretical by Protestant churches, who hold the Bible to be the only valid tradition. Inspired by the Protestant rejection of tradition, the Age of Enlightenment began to consider even the Bible itself as a questionable tradition.

Traditionalism may also refer to the concept of a fundamental human Tradition present in all orthodox religions and traditional forms of society. This view is put forward by the Traditionalist School.

Traditionalist Catholic refers to those, such as Archbishop Lefebvre, who want the worship and practices of the church to be as they were before the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965).

"Radical Traditionalism" refers to a worldview that stresses a return to traditional values of hard work, craftsmanship, local culture, tribal or clan orientation, and non-material values in response to a perceived excess of materialism, consumerism, technology, and societal homogeneity. Most Radical Traditionalists choose this term for themselves to stress their reaction to 'modern' society, as well as an equal disdain for more 'recent' forms of traditionalism based on Judeo-Christian and early-Industrial Age values. It is often allied with branches of Paganism that stress a return to old cultural values that predated the existence of the state system.

In Islam, traditionalism is the orthodox form, which places importance on traditional forms of learning and acknowledges different traditional schools of though.

[edit] Archaeological meaning

In archaeology a tradition is aof cultures or industries which appear to develop on from one another over a period of time. The term is especially common in the study of American archaeology.

[edit] See also

[edit] External links

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Tradition

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