Return of the Religi
Hello all once again. Now that school's done for the summer and I haven't started working days yet, I have nothing better to do in the hours between 10pm and 4pm than clean my suite and prepare for the move. To take a break from the monotony of cleanliness, I've decided to post the last installment of my apology. I see no comments as of yet, though I'm hardly surprised as it is quite long and perhaps a little boring. At any rate, in the interest of completion, here's the final chapter:
Joining and Finishing
The interaction between the business world and religions brings me to the second major area of interest for me within Religious Studies. As I have examined religions over the course of my studies both here at the
Unlike the relationship between business and religion (and vice versa), even at this early point in my career I have done some research into syncreticism ‘on the ground’ as it were. As I researched the interaction between Jesuit missionaries in
My interest in religious syncreticism has also been shaped by early experiences, though not in the same way as my interest in the Economics of Religion. While I in my ‘Apologetic’ phase, one of the books I found very interesting was entitled Eternity in Their Hearts. This missiological work, authored by one Don Richardson, exhorts Christians to seek out aspects of other cultures that are similar to Christianity in order to more effectively convert them to Christianity. Where I once read this book for guidance as a person of faith, as I approach it with the new eyes of a scholar, it has become another artefact of religious experience to be analysed, interpreted, and discussed. As an example of syncreticism at work in the ‘Modern’ world,
As I seek to examine the nature of religious syncreticism, as well as the nature of religion and religious practices as a whole, an understanding of the theories at work within discourses in Religious Studies will have a tremendous impact on my work. As I mentioned earlier, McCutcheon’s criticism of discourses within religious studies will be a powerful ally, particularly as I venture into areas that may not previously been considered to be within the purview of Religious Studies. The freedom gained from rejecting a sui-generis character of religion will allow me to explore these areas in great depth.
In addition to the freedom granted by McCutcheon’s work, I believe I will find Daniel Gold’s work, Aesthetics and Analysis in Writing on Religion, to be particularly helpful in my scholarly endeavours. In particular, his commentary on, “The Religiohistorical Sublime” will, I think, guide me in my studies. Where I am tempted to pursue above all else the arid, reasoned, ‘objective’ aspect of research into religions, Gold’s commentary points towards the necessity for imagination in scholarship, in order to achieve deeper levels of understanding. Likewise, where imagination takes over and runs wild, the brake of reason applied to imaginative discourse allows for a more balanced and appropriate analysis of religion.
Where in the earliest, most foundational stages of my interest in religion my thinking could be described as Fides Quarens Intellectum, currently, I believe that the motto of the
I have here presented the two major areas of my interest in Religious Studies, but I am far from set in my ways. With many more years of study ahead of me, in all likelihood, my interests in the study of religion will change. What will not change is my desire to seek truth in all things, wherever it may be found. Though some may not believe it to exist, it is my contention that truth can be found and I wish to be a part of its discovery.
 Don Richardson. Eternity in Their Hearts. (Ventura, California: Regal Books, 1981).