Focusing on the reflexive attitudes that religious specialists adopt toward their ceremonial practices, this themed section proposes to renew a line of inquiry developed around the complex and protean link that exists between ritual and reflexivity
Doing Ritual While Thinking about It?
The Large-Scale Rituals of the Repkong Tantrists in Tibet
In discussions on processes of ritual assessment and modification, the rituals examined are most often of a ‘performance-centered’ nature. 1 I am drawing here on Atkinson’s (1989: 14–15) useful distinction between ‘liturgy-centered’ and
Jens Kreinath and Refika Sariönder
( Kehl–Bodrogi 1988: 121, 230 ; Markoff 1986: 42 ; Vorhoff 1995: 64–68 ). Organized in cultural associations, Alevis started to make their ritual practice intentionally accessible to non–initiated Alevis and to non–Alevis, in contrast to their former
The Practice of ‘sharing’ in a New Age Variant of Umbanda
In contemporary Pagan and New Age rituals aimed at self-enhancement and personal development, verbal exchanges generally referred to by the emic term ‘sharing’ often follow the ritual endeavors. The experts who conduct these rituals (whether
Triggering Critical Reflexive Stances on Ritual Action in Togo
This article aims to shed light on a divination episode, which most blood sacrifices begin with in many West African societies, by examining how this ritual practice is carried out among the Kabye of northern Togo and by analyzing it in relation to
Moving Relations, Patterned Effusions
François Berthomé and Michael Houseman
This article reconsiders the connection between 'ritual' and 'emotion' from a pragmatic, relational perspective in which rituals are seen as dynamic interactive contexts and emotions as fairly short-lived emergent properties and integral components of these interactions. It emphasizes ritual's capacity to reallocate social positions by instantiating characteristic patterns of relationship, and the way particular emotions crystallize and express these patterns. In short, ritual emotions are treated as the sensate qualities of ritual relationships. From this standpoint, emotions feature in ceremonial settings not as striking experiences grafted onto practices and representations, but as constitutive aspects of ritual interactions themselves, whose properties of bodily salience and relational reflexivity both reflect and inflect the latter's course in a variety of sensory, expressive, moral, and strategic ways. Four issues relating to ritual and emotion are discussed within the framework of particular ceremonial practices that have been the object of much recent research: (1) the ritual expression of emotions in funerary laments, (2) the waning of cathartic models in the interpretation of rites of affliction, (3) the intense emotional arousal characteristic of initiatory ordeals, and (4) the self-constructive, affective dimensions of contemporary devotional practices.
Stacy M. K. George
the rituals, symbols, emotions, and various religious interactional procedures adopted by the Tea Party. Using qualitative methods, including in-depth participant observation in public Tea Party meetings and personal interviews with Tea Partiers, this
An Inquiry into the Initiation Process in a Burmese Organization of Exorcists
Bénédicte Brac de la Perrière
, 2012, 2014 and in April 2015, I present in this article an analysis of ritual tattooing performed on these occasions as the culmination of the initiation process in the Manaw Seittokpad congregation. The rituals marking entry into Burmese exorcist
Archaeology, Ritual, and Religion
This article is an introduction to the emerging sub-discipline of the archaeology of ritual and religion. It addresses the question of how archaeologists can approach these fields: what are the challenges and opportunities? Using theory and methodology, ritual and religion are explored in the archaeological record by means of so-called framing, and an interpretation is attempted through analogy and 'ethos'. Selected Neolithic sites from the Near East that have yielded rich and important data regarding ritual and religion serve as examples.
Tips, Commissions, and Ritual in Christian Pilgrimage to the Holy Land
The movement of money in Christian pilgrimage is a profound mirror of cultural classifications. By examining tips, commissions, and souvenir purchases in Holy Land pilgrimages, I show how the transfer of monies activates a series of multiple, complex relationships between Jewish guides, Palestinian drivers, and Christian pilgrims. I identify the 'colors'—or moral values—of salaries, tips, and commissions that change hands as 'white', 'black', or 'gray' monies and correlate these colors with particular discourses and degrees of transparency. I then illustrate how prayer, rituals, and the citation of scripture may 'bleach' these monies, transforming tips into 'love offerings' and souvenir purchases into aids to spiritual development or charity to local communities, while fostering relationships and conveying messages across religious and cultural lines. Far from being a universal 'acid' that taints human relationships, pilgrimage monies demonstrate how, through the exchange of goods, people are able to create and maintain spiritual values.