The Study of Religious Experience - Approaches and Methodologies - Bettina E. Schmidt

The Study of Religious Experience - Approaches and Methodologies - Bettina E. Schmidt

4. Cultural-Linguistic Constructivism and the Challenge of Near-Death and Out-of-Body Experiences

The Study of Religious Experience - Approaches and Methodologies - Bettina E. Schmidt

Gregory Shushan
Ian Ramsey Centre, Oxford University

Description

Ostensibly documentary accounts of near-death experiences (NDEs) are found in a variety of texts around the world: in religious literature, historical documents, and reports of ethnographers, missionaries and explorers. Despite local phenomenological differences, there is an essential thematic and structural continuity to the accounts cross-culturally. Furthermore, NDEs have a cross-culturally stable physical context (i.e., the individual is commonly near death), and basic interpretation (what happens when we die). Because beliefs in souls and life after death are commonly considered ‘religious,’ this has important implications for currently dominating postmodernist-influenced paradigms which state that because all religions are culturally unique and all experience is culturally-linguistically generated, there can be no such thing as a pan-human ‘religious experience’ type.

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Citation

Shushan, Gregory. 4. Cultural-Linguistic Constructivism and the Challenge of Near-Death and Out-of-Body Experiences. The Study of Religious Experience - Approaches and Methodologies. Equinox eBooks Publishing, United Kingdom. p. 71-87 Aug 2016. ISBN 971781792575. https://www.equinoxpub.com/home/view-chapter/?id=26578. Date accessed: 25 Jul 2017 doi: 10.1558/equinox.26578. Aug 2016

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