In of the ‘eternal yesterday,’ i.e. of the mores

In each society, there can be several authority
figures or leaders, who individuals trust and commend because of the power they
hold. This power can derive from multiple sources, such as tradition and order,
admirable qualities and ability to think rationally in difficult situations. In
his 1919 publication, Politics as a
Vocation, Max Weber, a well-known German sociologist, outlines the three primary
forms of authority: ‘traditional’, ‘charismatic,’ and ‘legal’ authority figures (Weber 1919,
2). The purpose of this essay is to discuss why Aideed
Jr. can be identified as a charismatic authority, and Pope Francis as a
traditional authority.

Pope Francis can be a recognized as a traditional authority, who gets
his authoritative power as a leader from God. As Professor Fujii emphasized in the ‘Weber’s World’
lecture, traditional authority comes from the divine command or power from God (Fujii 2018). Similarly, in Max Weber’s Politics as a Vocation, it states, “…the authority of the ‘eternal
yesterday,’ i.e. of the mores sanctified through the unimaginably ancient
recognition and habitual orientation to conform. This is ‘traditional’
domination exercised by the patriarch and the patrimonial prince of yore” (Weber
1919, 2). Thus, traditional authorities acquire their leadership and dominance through
established tradition and practices. Individuals in society who acknowledge traditional
order and practices often recognize and follow these authority figures. Likewise,
individuals who believe in religion as a social institution and God may also follow
these leaders and their teachings. Pope Francis fits this description of traditional
authority as he urges followers
who consulted their devices to alternatively consult their Bibles instead and
more often. Pope
Francis also affirms, “…the Mass is not a show. It’s a meeting with the passion
and the resurrection of our Lord” (Specia 2017). Moreover, the topic of the resurrection of the lord and the
Bible surely originates from the word of God, and in the name of religion. Through
these teachings, Pope Francis emphasizes the word of God and what the religion
of Christianity. These teachings hold significance to many individuals who find
security and assistance in living the way God desires them to. As highlighted above,
Pope Francis reinforces these teachings, therefore he holds power in the eyes
of these individuals and is a traditional authority figure.

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Next, Aideed Jr. can be perceived as a
charismatic figure of authority. According to Weber, a charismatic authority is
“…the authority of the extraordinary and personal gift of grace (charisma),
the absolutely personal devotion and personal confidence in revelation,
heroism, or other qualities of individual leadership” (Weber 1919, 2). Weber further states that a charismatic leader acquires the trust of
other individuals because of their liked qualities and charisma, not from tradition.
Individuals trust these charismatic authority figures because they strive for
their work and are determined to achieve the goals they have set, specific to
their cause (Weber
1919, 2). Considering this, Aideed Jr. can be portrayed
as a charismatic authority figure who possesses qualities that reinforce this. Aideed
Jr. was an ordinary Marine in the U.S., who lived as any other citizen would in
the U.S. before he took his late father’s position (Maass 2000). However, after he takes this position,
his life changes forever as he plans to rebuild Somalia with his experience from
the U.S. and acquires a large following of supporters who hope to achieve peace
in their country. For instance, in the
article, The Accidental Warlord Maass
states, “There are several hundred people inside; when Aideed arrives the women
start wailing and the men cheer” (Maass 2000). Aideed Jr. has hundreds of
supporters who have gathered to see him and listen to his speech regarding peace
and reconciliation eagerly. These supporters believe Aideed Jr. can make Somalia
a better place and take his father’s position. Maass further states, “‘I don’t
have independence,’ he complains. ‘My life is run by the system here in Somalia'”
(Maass 2000). In
addition, Aideed also leaves behind four wives and children to support his cause
and rebuild Somalia. His supporters believe he can make Somalia a better place as
he lived abroad in the U.S. and has the connections to unite the country. Consequently,
Aideed’s speech reassures the citizens of Somalia who want a politician to rule
that stresses peace and reconciliation. Thus,
this reinforces and supports Weber’s definition of a charismatic leader, as
Aideed Jr. has supporters and determination to improve conditions in Somalia,
along with help from the Americans. Overall, Aideed Jr. can be recognized as a charismatic leader who hoped
for the betterment of the country.

To conclude, in his 1919 essay, Politics as a Vocation, Weber discusses
the type of authority figures visible in societies in his time, who continue to
exist in our modern societies. Overall, Pope Francis can be recognized as a
traditional authority, who gets his sense of power from the divine command of
God and ancient order. These sources of power allow him to acquire a large
following of Catholics who have faith in his teachings. On the contrary, Aideed
Jr. can be identified as a charismatic authority who obtains his position as an
influential leader through his charisma and appealing qualities. These
qualities have allowed him to be devoted to his cause and make a difference in the
society. By considering the different types of
authorities, individuals can better understand the different authorities that
exist and why they continue to influence individuals in society the way they do.