Religious experience: a sociological perspective

Wilson, Bryan (1996) Religious experience: a sociological perspective.

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Abstract

The usual idea of a religious experience is conceived in largely individual terms. It is generally seen as an uninduced, unanticipated and most probably sudden sense of some force, power, or mood which transcends everyday comprehension, and which is beyond ordinary empirical explanation. Where an explanation of such phenomena is attempted, the tendency is to seek to understand them in essentially psychological terms. What I wish to suggest is that, although this is the common understanding of what is implied by the term “religious experience”, in fact by no means all such experience is of a purely psychological kind. Many people, who would not claim to have encountered such a numinous sense of a force or a presence, would certainly claim to have acquired new religious insight by quite different means and in what would usually be quite different circumstances.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: Series: RERC Second Series Occasional Papers;2.
Uncontrolled Keywords: Experience (Religion)
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BL Religion
Divisions: Alister Hardy Religious Experience Research Centre > Second Series of Occasional Papers
Depositing User: John Dalling
Date Deposited: 02 Oct 2014 14:55
Last Modified: 23 Feb 2016 16:15
URI: http://repository.uwtsd.ac.uk/id/eprint/355

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