O Flaherty

Improved Essays
One such scholar who offers an interpretation of this method is Wendy Doniger - O’Flaherty. O’Flaherty, in detailing her account of the hunter and the sage, advocates for religious studies scholars to be more sympathetic to the beliefs and experiences of the adherent within the specific phenomenon. That is to say, she holds that we as scholar should try to the best of our ability to put ourselves in the participants ‘shoes’, “but to remain, at the same time, inside [our] own head.” The stance that O’Flaherty is arguing from enables scholars to retrieve valuable data of the participants in study about their belief structure and experiences, while simultaneously allowing us to sympathetically share the participants disposition towards the specific …show more content…
P. Pratap Kumar argued that our conceptual understanding of ‘insider’ and ‘outsider’ will always be up for debate, and should not concern nor prevent scholars from undertaking a specific study. Scholars in studying these phenomena are just as insightful and contribute just as actively to the field as the new-age practitioners themselves. And with new-age phenomena being intertwined with participants who stray from identification, we cannot fairly call them ‘insiders’, nor call ourselves as scholars ‘outsiders’. Being said, Kumar regards all religious and spiritual systems in a similar manner to J. Z. Smith, in that they are academic constructs which are defined by the specific parameters of a scholar’s study. What’s most useful about the position Kumar assumes is that since religious and spiritual concepts are fabricated, it is a scholar’s general authority to not only study these phenomena, but to also affirm from which parameters they are actively studying within. This entails that we could then research modern religious and spiritual practice not only as modern ‘social phenomena’, but also in a broader sense, ultimately using them as “conceptual tools for our scholarly comparative …show more content…
This analysis has also presented a variation to the method that is currently offered within our Western paradigm, which emphasizes a focus on one’s phenomelogical experience, and achieves accurate data through the use of participant observation with a sympathetic disposition. Even further, it demonstrates how religious and spiritual concepts are academically fabricated, and therefore the scholar’s ultimate prerogative to study and interpret as objectively as

Related Documents

  • Superior Essays

    Myers is called the Levels-of-Explanation view. A great way to start with this approach is to understand that it emphasizes a multi-layered perspective. This view offers a lens that welcomes openness and complementary perspectives that can be used to build bridges between the gaps between science and faith. During this journey, it is crucial for individuals to be cautious of bias and cultures. The L-O-E approach points out that people tend to stick to their own perspective when they are searching for truth.…

    • 1097 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    In order to obtain a more concise and understanding of religions and their values, I believe that redefining religion in itself would be necessary. This will allow for in-depth knowledge that one can eventually then may proceed to discuss religion pluralism. Western society is known to group things that seem “alike” in categories. From the type of people and their race to types of religions. It is crucial for organizational purposes however the definition of religion can also be seen this way, but can cause more confusion than necessary.…

    • 873 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Religion Validity

    • 1546 Words
    • 7 Pages

    The writing addresses concerns regarding the validity of the quest scale introduced by Batson and Ventis. Although this scale personally to me is not accurate. It provides a good input on the debate but there has been concerns regarding the reliability of the scale. As I finished my research on the validity of religion I decided to get one more viewpoint using ideology. Given that I have already used philosophy and sociology I decided this would provide some good answers with a different point of view.…

    • 1546 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    In one aspect, comparative religion allows the examiner to inspect a particular religion from an objective standpoint. The goals of comparative religion is not to assess the material in hopes to deepen further the faith of the interpreter. Instead, the goal of comparative religion is to review the “academic, sociological, or cultural anthropological” (class notes) disposition of the religion. An example of how the outside study of a religion becomes a necessary component in order to deepen one’s faith may be found in the Nostra Aetate document. In the Catholic document written during the Second Vatican Council, it says that the Catholic church sets itself to “work sincerely for mutual understanding and to preserve as well as to promote together for the benefit of all mankind’s social justice and moral welfare, as well as peace and freedom” (Nostra Aetate, 3).…

    • 1010 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    In science we are trying to find the meaning of experience outwardly, whereas more emphasis in religion is spiritual experience that foster awareness and understanding of deep religious. In some ways, this may be described by our science, but it cannot be measured and expressed by formulas exact science (Soedowo, 2007). Nevertheless, one thing is clear, that the physical and spiritual life remains dominated by the grammar rule of law. This means, both religion and science, that is, God. Both complement each other and help humans in their respective fields in its own way.…

    • 999 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    If a therapists own mindset makes the use of these types of interventions to be a detriment than more traditional modalities remain preferred. In best case scenarios, the therapist will understand and have a faith-based grounding in application and practice and be able to genuinely guide a patient in the right direction. The importance of applying biblical principles into therapy must be done in the most ethical regard (Garzon, 2005, 115). Ethical and cultural significance should be well-known prior to making faith-based…

    • 911 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    She says that the words of Sextus reveal the existence of two different orders of belief: the theological order and the ordinary religious order. The theological order is where the philosophers carry out their discussions about God. There is a difference between theological and religious beliefs. Theological beliefs deal with the question about the existence of God or gods as well as about their nature, while religious beliefs are related rather to the execution of rituals. Julia Annas suggests that the skeptical suspension of judgment occurs on the theological order and, therefore, is compatible with religious beliefs.…

    • 796 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Our understanding of the issues surrounding Religion such as God, truthfulness and human experience can be modernized with the help of new and scientific methods. Scholars of Religion can debate the affect of Religion on humans, the issues is Religion is part of life now and will be in the future. Scientific methods of research will be reliable, increase our knowledge and contribute to the success of Religious studies. W. C. Smith argued that Religion could not be a field of study because of the nature of the subject. He thinks that the western modernity sees Religion as threat to its practices.…

    • 983 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    He believes that through understanding religion, we can explain human motivation. To Weber, religion provides humanity answers to theodicy questions such as suffering and misfortunes to undeserved people and vice versa. Religion provide answers to this unbalanced world and thus motivates humanity to find salvation through it. Whether that salvation is a relief from suffering or simply reassurance of one’s abilities and importance, Weber believes that it is the foundation of motivation through the religious perspective. Weber introduced ‘Verstehen’ into the field of sociology.…

    • 1394 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Openness Theology

    • 2169 Words
    • 9 Pages

    Although there are other issues of concern, this paper will focus on these areas stated in the thesis. The questions concerning the existence of God and evil are important and in one’s spiritual formation, a person should develop a theology with reasonable answers; however, not at the cost of God’s majesty. The first area of concern with Openness theology is God’s omniscience and foreknowledge. Openness theology teaches that God does…

    • 2169 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Improved Essays