This book shows that widespread resacralisation has been taking place, which is producing new ways of perceiving God and the divine. The last century has seen unmistakable changes in religious practices and the concept of spirituality right across the world. There was a broad expectation for much of the twentieth century that religious worldviews would eventually succumb to the challenge of secularist materialism, but this process of secularisation has yet to occur as predicted.
The book begins by contrasting theories of secularisation and resacralisation. Throughout the book, conceptual threads, or ‘new religious themes’, related to this resacralisation are discussed in terms of three main categories: reimagining God’s nature, substance and location; reimagining human value and purpose; and reimagining modes of redemption. Finally, the book considers how these threads are moving in various different directions, and what the religious future might hold.
This is a bold examination of contemporary spirituality that will appeal to academics and scholars of religious studies, new religious movements and the sociology of religion.
Table of Contents
1 The Changing Face of Religion
2 The Great Emergence in Outline
3 Reimagining God’s Substance, Nature and Location
4 Reimagining Material Value and Purpose
5 Reimagining Redemption
6 A New Sacred Canopy
Alexa Blonner received her doctoral degree in Studies in Religion at the University of Sydney, Australia in 2017, specialising in new religious movements. She has presented papers on the Unification Movement and Korean indigenous new religious movements at conferences as an independent scholar and has had three papers published in peer-reviewed journals to date with more in the pipeline. Other areas of interest are the philosophy of religion, sociology of religion, religious anthropology, spirituality, morals and ethics.
‘A refreshing reconsideration of religious transformations in our time, and useful in qualifying prior theories yet drawing on what is best in them on the durability and future of religion.’ – Garry W. Trompf, Emeritus Professor in the History of Ideas, University of Sydney, Australia