The Entanglement of Spirituality, Wellbeing and ‘Spiritual Economy’ in Brazil: The Shift from ‘Living well together’ to ‘Leading a good life’

Schmidt, Bettina E. (2022) The Entanglement of Spirituality, Wellbeing and ‘Spiritual Economy’ in Brazil: The Shift from ‘Living well together’ to ‘Leading a good life’. In: New Spiritualities and the Cultures of Well-Being in Neoliberal Societies. Springer, Cham, switzerland. (Unpublished)

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Abstract

The traditional discourse of wellbeing in Latin America reflects the indigenous understanding of wellbeing as ‘living well together’. In this sense wellbeing is defined as a harmonious relationship between human beings, nature and the wider cosmos. Recently, however, this traditional concept is impacted by a shift to taking control of one’s life and the imperative of leading a ‘good life’. Spiritual practices that are seen as increasing a sense of wellbeing have become a commodity. This chapter looks at the impact of these changes on the perception of wellbeing. The focus is on Brazil which went through a wide reaching social and economic transformation in the recent decades that led to growing secularisation and consequently individualisation. By comparing different perceptions of wellbeing, the chapter illustrates the impact of neoliberal thinking in Brazil. It argues that while the traditional perception of wellbeing as relational is still widespread throughout Brazil, there is a growing trend to a neoliberal perception of wellbeing which promotes the privatization of religion and health.

Item Type: Book Section
Uncontrolled Keywords: spirituality, wellbeing, Brazil
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
F History United States, Canada, Latin America > F1201 Latin America (General)
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GN Anthropology
Divisions: Institutes and Academies > Institute of Education and Humanities > Academic Discipline: Humanities and Social Sciences
Depositing User: Bettina Schmidt
Date Deposited: 07 Apr 2022 12:52
Last Modified: 25 Jul 2022 13:50
URI: https://repository.uwtsd.ac.uk/id/eprint/1949

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