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T.M. Luhrmann


My proposal is that local theory of mind – what I call here the ‘infrastructures of mind’ – shapes the way people recognize and experience supernatural presence. That is, I argue that the local cultural invitation to imagine thoughts, mental images and inner sensations in particular ways – as potent, powerful and dangerous, for instance, or as the heart of an authentic self – will affect the way people recognize and experience God’s voice. I compare interview data from similar churches in the US, Ghana and Chennai, to show that there are systematic differences in the way people experience God and that these differences appear to reflect culturally different understandings of mind. The often-unnoticed infrastructures of the thing that thinks – the way we think about our thinking – alters not only our mental experience but also the very texture of our reality.

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Jewish Tourism in Morocco

<em>Hilloulot</em> as a Case Study

Hanane Sekkat

Is it possible to bring together Jews of Moroccan origin wherever they may live and convince them to keep in touch with Morocco? This is not merely a question of visiting the country for tourism but, above all, of convincing Moroccan Jews to serve as promoters of Moroccan diplomacy. To achieve this aim, it was imperative to make brave decisions, which is indeed what King Hassan II has done. To give more consistency and significance to the ties of loyalty, the Moroccan state is taking remarkable measures, organising hilloulot (Hb. ‘pilgrimages’), moments of intense spiritual experience evoking a long Jewish presence in Morocco spanning two thousand years.

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Lionel Blue

that the same side of your brain which deals with fantasy/dreams/belief/love/hate also deals with these. They might not match up to the same certainty of touch, but they can still have an overwhelming influence, e.g. spiritual experiences as a child

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Lionel Blue

!’, and seeking God so much in the past – tradition and archaeology – that religious education begins to replace spiritual experience, just as cleverness has replaced wisdom in higher education. Singing doleful songs about the Temple or the throne of David

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Commitment, Convergence, Alterity

Muslim-Christian Comparison and the Politics of Distinction in the Netherlands

Daan Beekers

for spiritual experiences of feeling close to God, especially—but not only—through salat (ritual prayer). Some of them also criticized Salafi teachings for being “too rigid.” Yet in very similar ways, the young Muslims and Christians I worked with

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Guest Editors’ Introduction

Resisting Liberalism in Israel—the Case of Marginalized Mizrahim

Nissim Mizrachi and Menachem Mautner

working-class spiritual experience as an autonomous cultural option vis-à-vis the state. Alush-Levron shows how God’s Neighbors , an award-winning 2012 Israeli production directed by Meni Yaesh, deviates from the precise liberal parameters that generally

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“I Was Not Willing to Risk my Hajj”

Information Coping Strategies of Hajj Pilgrims

Nadia Caidi

gender shapes one's spiritual experiences and at times creates an additional pressure in the quest to have an “authentic” Hajj experience. The difficulty of finding adequate and detailed information in official sources about the gendered nature of the

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Assessing Ritual Experience in Contemporary Spiritualities

The Practice of ‘sharing’ in a New Age Variant of Umbanda

Viola Teisenhoffer

of spiritual entities and the rituals they prescribe are therefore intended to rectify this imbalance, enabling their clients to submit to spiritual experiences and to embrace the entities’ point of view. In general, the entities’ utterances, which

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Teachings of Tara

Sacred Place and Human Wellbeing in the Shimla Hills

Jonathan Miles-Watson

that our being is both fluid and open-ended, that lends itself to a feeling of loss of the self, which can either be comforting or unsettling ( Ingold 2007 ). In noting this slyphic quality of spiritual experience, I am not alone; reflection on the way

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Knowledge, Ignorance, and Pilgrimage

Evgenia Mesaritou, Simon Coleman, and John Eade

the importance of the guides’ historical and geographical “knowledge of the Land” ( Bajc 2007: 402, 399 ; Feldman 2007: 356 ) in shaping the spiritual experience. This knowledge is felt to be important by the pilgrims who wish to experience (biblical