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Social Pressure in the Choice of Individual Religious Practice

Tatiana Bulgakova

Keywords: indigenous Siberians; Nanai; new religions; shamanism; social pressure

Social pressure has been one of the core factors affecting choices in religious practices among indigenous peoples of Siberia in the context of drastic contemporary changes. Until the mid-1990s, in some isolated groups with elders practicing shamanism an individual choice of religion operated in a traditional way. However, in the process of becoming a society open to external religious influences broadening religious and cultural communication has led to the popularization of new religious preferences within indigenous societies. In the course of these changes both religious praxis is changing along with the content of social pressure. Previously unanimous public support of traditional religious praxis is becoming a conflicted discourse concerning expanded religious choices.

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