3. Comparative and Historical Studies of Religions: The Return of Science
Contemporary Views on Comparative Religion - In Celebration of Tim Jensen’s 65th Birthday - Peter Antes
Luther H. Martin [+]
University of Vermont
Comparative and historical studies of religion have often been considered to be related but different pursuits. From a theoretical perspective, however, the two inquiries are similarly defined by a subject matter that is separated from the researcher by distance, the one by space, the other by time. Recent insights from the cognitive sciences suggest that these two modes of inquiry engage similar mental processes. As such, conventional methods developed by comparativists and by historians might prove to be mutually profitably even as both are assessed and/or corrected by the mental constraints on method being identified by cognitive scientists of religion.