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The functionalists view of society can be compared to a clock. They see the clock as society and the institutions such as religion and education as the multiple parts of the clock. Functionalists believe that all parts of the clock are needed as each part plays a different role in ensuring the overall functioning of the clock (society).

Religion is seen as an important institution that is valuable to society in the view of functionalism. Like the functionalist approach to society, religion has multiple functions that all fulfil different purposes, if any of the functions do not work it will affect religion, similar to the functionalist’s theory on society. For example, Durkheim believed that religion had three major functions that society required.

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