How does the study of the religious experiences and attitudes of individuals with mental disabilities or disorders illuminate the nature of religious cognition? We will write a book that draws lessons from four disorders or disabilities for studying scientifically how people think about gods. We argue for an “ecumenical naturalism,” which allows for a variety of religious representations that are more or less widespread. Conventional representations of gods, though natural in the sense of emerging from routine variations in the functioning of human cognitive capacities, either (1)serve as culturally accepted models for or (2) are inspired by or (3) are decidedly truncated or exaggerated in the religious representations associated with mental disorders. The last arise no less naturally than standard forms, but they often stray (predictably) from those forms. Understanding their etiology and cultural management gives explanatory leverage in accounting for religious thought and practice. Our work is meant to contribute to the cognitive science of religion and to its interdisciplinary character as well to a variety of other fields, both theoretical and practical. First,we will produce a book that makes a general case for examining abnormal systems for better understanding normal systems’ standard operations. It will explore four types of mental disorders, each of which has telling relations to religious cognition. The book will be the first of its kind. It should influence future work and education in the cognitive science of religion, the cognitive sciences more generally, religious studies, theology, and the philosophy of religion as well as work and education concerned with the practical concerns of clinicians and religious professionals. We also propose to stage a small number of related events, at Emory’s Center for Mind, Brain, and Culture (CMBC), that will both provide support for our research and disseminate its results both locally and beyond (via podcasts).
Templeton.org is in English. Only a few pages are translated into other languages.
Usted está viendo Templeton.org en español. Tenga en cuenta que solamente hemos traducido algunas páginas a su idioma. El resto permanecen en inglés.
Você está vendo Templeton.org em Português. Apenas algumas páginas do site são traduzidas para o seu idioma. As páginas restantes são apenas em Inglês.
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