Absence as Advantage

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The interview conducted by David Robertson from the Religious Studies project with Bjørn Ola Tafjord (University of Tromsø) and Arkotong Longkumer (University of Edinburgh) explores the meanings, challenges and various usages of the increasingly popular notion of Indigenous Religion(s).
Arkotong Longkumer
bjørn ola tafjord
Indigeneity
indigenous religion
religion

The Perils and Promise of “Authenticity”

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The RSP interview with Doctors Theodora Wild croft and Stephen Jacobs about the adoption (and/or appropriation) of kirtan in British culture interested me tremendously, as my own work focuses on Filianism—a New Religious Movement in Britain that, although not arising directly out of Hinduism, has frequently employed Sanskrit terms and elements of Hindu iconography to present itself to the public.
Filianism
hinduism
Race MoChridhe
Stephen Jacobs
Theodora Wildcroft

The RSP needs you!

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It's the start of a new season (semester?) of podcasts for the Religious Studies Project and we have a new responses editor in the form of me Jonathan Tuckett! You may remember me from back in the very early days of the podcasts
early career academics
postgraduates
religious studies programs
religious studies project
religious studies students

Patreon

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The Religious Studies Project have launched a Patreon campaign - Chris and David explain why. Be part of the solution, not the problem...
patreon
Video

Stretching Good Faith: A Response to Candy Gunther Brown

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If Candy Gunther Brown’s work is so divergent with her peers in academia, how does one contextualize her understanding of yoga and her approach to it? In keeping with Bender’s assessment that Brown “exemplifies the ‘caveat emptor’ genre of popular writing about CAM,” I would argue that Brown’s writings on yoga are most similar to the genre of Christian-based criticism of yoga.
Candy Gunther Brown
Daniel Gorman Jr
Encinitas
Jennifer Sedlock
Yoga

On Reading Ralph Ellison Theologically

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Most scholars examining invisibility in Ellison’s novel consider it a social metaphor: the novel’s protagonist is made invisible by people’s refusal to really see him. Yet Harriss claims invisibility is also a theological trope, with roots in biblical materials, Protestantism, and Kongo traditions, antecedents that establish it as an unmarked religious category. More than the social marginalization of black bodies, Harriss contends invisibility is metaphysical, too.
Cooper Harriss
Dusty Hoesly
invisible theology
Literature
Race
Ralph Ellison
Secular

The Religious Meanings of Borders

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Maffly-Kipp offers what might be thought of as a mandate for borders for religious historians towards the end of the conversation. She and Gorman are talking about global histories, and specifically how global history re-shapes American religious history. Maffly-Kipp says it’s not enough to note borders and the crossing of borders, in religious histories. Instead, the meaning and affects and effects of borders on religion must be carefully examined.
borders
Daniel Silliman
Edward Oke
Janette Oke
Laurie Maffly-Kipp
Missionary Church

Messengers of Many Gods: A Response to the RSP Interview with Tehri Utriainen

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Angels don’t just make esotericism accessible to Christians; they make the legacy of Christian thought and active dialogue with the Christian world accessible to people who have often left both on bad terms, and would not otherwise be willing or able to engage with them.
angels
Race MoChridhe
syncretism
Tehri Utriainen
Thor

Explaining Witchcraft: Response to ‘Witchcraft in Slovenia’

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In her interview, Mirjam Mencej discusses her fascinating research into witchcraft in rural Slovenia. She conducted field work in Eastern Slovenia into people’s beliefs on witchcraft. Though restricted to rural areas in Eastern Slovenia, she claims belief in witchcraft is very much alive.
Cognitive Approaches
Hans van Eyghen
Mirjam Mencej
social evolution
Witchcraft

Mormon, Jesuits, and the Pain of Replication: A Historical-Social Excursus

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In their interview dealing with the place of American religion in the world and ‘bodies in space’, Dan Gorman and Professor Laurie Maffly-Kipp cover a wide range of topics relevant to both American religious history and Mormon studies as they reflect on several important suggestions made by John McGreevy in his American Jesuits and the World.
Adam J Powell
Cosmopolitanism
Jesuits
Laurie Maffly-Kipp
Mormonism

Could Empathy Encourage Hyperactive Authority Detection?

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Misplaced Faith? an interview with Professor Luke Galen, inspires some interesting speculations that I’ll offer in response. First, the mention of gender differences in the context of individual differences in the “sensus divinitatis” and agency detection is potentially important.
Cognitive Approaches
hyperactive agency detection
Luke Galen
Nick Stauner

Unwitchers and Witchcraft Discourse as Social Control: In Response to Mirjam Mencej

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In a recent interview with the Religious Studies Project, Mirjam Mencej, PhD, Professor of Folklore Studies and Comparative Mythology at the Department of Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Ljubljana speaks about her ethnographic research and findings which are presented in her 2017 publication
Mirjam Mencej
new age
Patricia 'Iolana
unwitching
Witchcraft

Teaching Religion: A Response to Douglas Brooks

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In his classroom, there is a clear divide between scholar and practitioner, between religious studies and religious practice. Obviously, [Brooks] is an example of how those two worlds comingle. But he is also committed to further advancing the study of religion as a secular discipline – in the same way that one studies history, psychology, sociology, and the like.
academic study of religion
Douglas R Brooks
teaching
William Chavez

Studying Tantra from the Inside and Out

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In this interview on ‘Studying Tantra from the Inside and Out’, Douglas R Brooks allows the listener an insight into his own personal and academic development, and an account of how various factors led him to the study of South Indian Shrividya Shakta Tantrism. There are many interesting elements to consider therein,...
Douglas R Brooks
insider/outsider
Sammy Bishop
Tantra
Yoga

Paths to Sexual Ethics

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Paths need not be linear nor our place on them stagnant, rather we can draw from the past and draw it into the present moment, revisiting and revising as we ask new questions in enduring, and uniting, struggles over ethics in sexuality and beyond.
Elisabeth Becker
Ethics
gender
Islam
Kecia Ali
Sexual Ethics
Sexuality