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Displaying: 1-10 of 308 documents


articles
1. Alternative Spirituality and Religion Review: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Ethan Doyle White Between the Devil and the Old Gods: Exploring the Intersection between the Pagan and Satanic Milieus
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In contrast to emic claims that modern Paganism and Satanism are inherently distinct phenomena with little or no common ground, this article demonstrates that there is an area of clear intersection between the two. To do so, it presents them both as different milieus within the wider framework of occultism, occulture, and the cultic milieu. To make the argument, three case studies are presented. The first concerns Satanic elements within the modern Pagan religion of Wicca, while the second two consider the Pagan aspects of two groups usually regarded as Satanic: the Temple of Set and the Order of Nine Angles. The aim is to illustrate the various ways in which the two milieus interact, thus shedding further light on these new, alternative religions.
2. Alternative Spirituality and Religion Review: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Kaarina Aitamurto The Faizrakhmanisty: The Islamic Sect as a Social Problem in Russia
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During the recent decade, the control of religious life and even the persecution of religious minorities has intensified in Russia. This article discusses a small Islamic group, Faizrakhmanisty. This group was named after its founder and leader, Faizrakhman Sattarov. The community lived isolated from the society in a small compound in Tatarstan. In 2012, the police conducted a raid as a part of the investigations of the murder of the Mufti of the republic of Tatarstan. Stories about this authoritarian and potentially dangerous sect were covered not only in Russian, but also in international media. Many of the stories contained exaggerated claims and relied on a few somewhat controversial “experts” of Islam in Russia. This article analyses the way in which Faizrakhmanisty were constructed as a social problem and a “totalitarian sect” and the consequent banning of the organization. In contemporary Russia, such labels as “sect” bring serious consequences for religious communities. In order to place the case of Faizrakhmanisty in context, the article discusses four other forms of Islam or Islamic organizations, Wahhabism, Hizb-ut Tahrir, Nurdzhular, and the National Organization of Russian Muslims, which are generally labelled as “sects” in the Russian context.
3. Alternative Spirituality and Religion Review: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Stefano Bigliardi Santo Daime Narratives In Italy: Walter Menozzi, Stella Azzurra, and the Conceptualization of Ayahuasca and Science
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The essay examines in detail the theology of Walter Menozzi, founder and leader of the Italian Santo Daime association Stella Azzurra, the history of which is also reconstructed here. Focusing both on the views expressed in Menozzi’s writings and on some narratives collected at a ritual in which the author actively participated, the study identifies eight ways in which ayahuasca, the psychoactive brew that is identified as a sacrament by Santo Daime affiliates, and science are conflated with religion by Santo Daime followers in order to substantiate, strengthen, and defend ayahuasca-related theology.
4. Alternative Spirituality and Religion Review: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Jonathan Tuckett Taekwondo: From Nationalistic Pursuit to Private Spirituality
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This paper develops an earlier proposal to consider ‘religion’ in terms of Edmund Husserl’s phenomenological concept of the natural attitude. My overall aim is to argue that ‘religion’ represents an ideological concept for demarcating deviant modes of naturalisation. In focusing on the case of Taekwondo, I will not be able to give a full exposition to this understanding of ‘religion’ but, rather, will make a more conservative attempt to give better phenomenological sense to the term ‘spirituality,’ a concept that will be key for achieving the larger task. To demonstrate this, I will look at Taekwondo in relation to what John Donohue has called the ‘American warrior hero’ as an aspect of American modes of naturalisation.
5. Alternative Spirituality and Religion Review: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Wimal Hewamanage The History of the Kāli Cult and its Implications in Modern Sri Lankan Buddhist Culture
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Historically speaking, belief in gods and demons has been practiced all over the world, beginning even before organized religions came into being. Over the last few decades, the influence of the Kāli cult has spread rapidly in Sri Lankan Buddhist culture. This research paper reveals how and why the Kāli cult is popular today, with reference to its history. The investigation of its historical aspects is based on literature, while a discussion of the cult’s present practice is informed by examination of its methods of participation, as well as observations and open discussions. Data collection involved a literature review and qualitative interviews with the cult’s charmers and devotees. Some of the data indicates that the cult is based on an incarnation of Śiva’s wife named Kāli; other records suggest, however, that the cult originated in ancient India before the Aryan invasion. Recently, there has been some loss of spirituality among Buddhist adherents and it can be suggested, therefore, that the Kāli cult offers them direction in their worldly lives. Although the elements of cruelty present in the Kāli doctrine clash with Buddhist tradition, it seems that these adherents are willing to follow anything that enables self-benefit. To overcome this contradiction between Buddhism and the Kāli cult, the figure of Kāli has been transformed from a demoness into goddess.
6. Alternative Spirituality and Religion Review: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
James R. Lewis, Zhang Xinzhang, Oscar-Torjus Utaaker Processual Pagans: Quasi-longitudinal Approaches to Survey Research
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There is a common pattern for researchers to study one particular new religion, write a monograph or article on that specific group, and then begin the cycle all over again with a different group. This approach causes one to remember such groups as relatively stable organizations, fixed in memory at a specific stage of development, rather than as dynamic, evolving groups. In the present article, we will examine new data on contemporary Pagans that takes a quasi-longitudinal approach to survey data. Though our focus will be limited, the result will nevertheless be a partial statistical picture of Paganism as a changing, evolving movement, rather than a static statistical snapshot.
book reviews
7. Alternative Spirituality and Religion Review: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Stefano Bigliardi Santo Daime: A New World Religion. By Andrew Dawson
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8. Alternative Spirituality and Religion Review: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Carole M. Cusack Against All Gods: Six Polemics on Religion and an Essay on Kindness. By A. C. Grayling
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9. Alternative Spirituality and Religion Review: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Carole M. Cusack Alien Worlds: Social and Religious Dimensions of Extraterrestrial Contact. Edited by Diana G. Tumminia
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10. Alternative Spirituality and Religion Review: Volume > 9 > Issue: 2
Carole M. Cusack Mana: A History of a Western Category. By Nicolas Meylan
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