Spiritual Experience and Seeking: A New Religious Movement case study

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This paper discusses the role spiritual experience has played in regard to individuals' affiliation to Swami Muktananda's Siddha Yoga; that is, individuals' spiritual experience prior to their affiliation with Siddha Yoga. This study shows that individuals' prior spiritual experience eventually became integrated into their conversion motif (this does not deny that other attractions or influences were not involved, just that this paper focuses on prior spiritual experience). For the participants in this study, prior spiritual experience appeared, in retrospect, as almost a calling or their 'Road to Damascus.' When participants in this study reported having spiritual experience prior to involvement in Siddha Yoga, it was both a positive revelation and also something at times overwhelming and difficult to place in everyday experience or the dominant religious traditions. It was also a powerful and transformative experience which, more that 30'years later, is still a significant aspect of their continuing spiritual journey and personal narrative. For the individuals in this study, their prior religious experience appeared, even for a time, to have found a context in the framework of Siddha Yoga.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1015-1025
Number of pages11
JournalReligion Compass
Volume3
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2009

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Spiritual Experiences
New Religious Movements
Yoga
Damascus
Attraction
Personal Narratives
Spiritual Journey
Religious Experience
Revelation
Motifs
Religious Traditions
Roads

Cite this

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title = "Spiritual Experience and Seeking: A New Religious Movement case study",
abstract = "This paper discusses the role spiritual experience has played in regard to individuals' affiliation to Swami Muktananda's Siddha Yoga; that is, individuals' spiritual experience prior to their affiliation with Siddha Yoga. This study shows that individuals' prior spiritual experience eventually became integrated into their conversion motif (this does not deny that other attractions or influences were not involved, just that this paper focuses on prior spiritual experience). For the participants in this study, prior spiritual experience appeared, in retrospect, as almost a calling or their 'Road to Damascus.' When participants in this study reported having spiritual experience prior to involvement in Siddha Yoga, it was both a positive revelation and also something at times overwhelming and difficult to place in everyday experience or the dominant religious traditions. It was also a powerful and transformative experience which, more that 30'years later, is still a significant aspect of their continuing spiritual journey and personal narrative. For the individuals in this study, their prior religious experience appeared, even for a time, to have found a context in the framework of Siddha Yoga.",
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Spiritual Experience and Seeking : A New Religious Movement case study. / Healy, John.

In: Religion Compass, Vol. 3, No. 6, 2009, p. 1015-1025.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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