The Varieties Of Religious Experience
I’m neither a theologian, nor a scholar discovered within the historical past of religions, nor an anthropologist. Psychology is the one department of studying wherein I’m notably versed. To the psychologist the spiritual propensities of man have to be at the least as attention-grabbing as every other of the details pertaining to his psychological structure. It would appear, subsequently, as a psychologist, the pure factor for me can be to ask you to a descriptive survey of these spiritual propensities.”When William James went to the University of Edinburgh in 1901 to deliver a series of lectures on “pure faith,” he defined religion as “the sentiments, acts, and experiences of particular person males of their solitude, as far as they apprehend themselves to face in relation to no matter they might contemplate the divine.” Considering religion, then, not as it is defined by-or takes place in-the churches, but as it is felt in everyday life, he undertook a project that, upon completion, stands not only as one of the most important texts on psychology ever written, not only as a vitally serious contemplation of spirituality, but for many critics one of the best works of nonfiction written in the 20th century. Reading The Varieties of Religious Experience, it is easy to see why. Applying his analytic clarity to religious accounts from a variety of sources, James elaborates a pluralistic framework in which “the divine can imply no single high quality, it should imply a bunch of qualities, by being champions of which in alternation, completely different males could all discover worthy missions.” It’s an mental name for severe spiritual tolerance-indeed, respect-the vitality of which has not diminished by means of the following many years.
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