Psychology of Religion

Allan Anderson, Michael Bergunder, André Droogers and Cornelis van der Laan

in Studying Global Pentecostalism

Published by University of California Press

Published in print September 2010 | ISBN: 9780520266612
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520947504 | DOI:
Psychology of Religion

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This chapter investigates religious beliefs, experiences, and behavior in relation to psychological concepts and theories. Psychological research on Pentecostal religiosity is structured by the distinction between two research perspectives. The first perspective analyzes exogenous psychological causes and consequences of Pentecostalism. Pentecostalism in this perspective is regarded as a black box connected with these causes and consequences, and thus solely as an epiphenomenon of general psychological processes. The theoretical bases are general psychological categories, which are applied to the religious experiences and behavior of Pentecostals. This perspective is useful for revealing and describing aspects of religion that may not be captured otherwise. It is only one of the perspectives that are taken with respect to religion, each contributing in a different way to the investigation of the field, but, concurrently, each perspective is subjected to specific restrictions.

Keywords: psychology of religion; religious beliefs; Pentecostalism; psychological categories; psychological processes

Chapter.  10490 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Religious Studies

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