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  • 1.
    Arvidsson, Stefan
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Cultural Sciences.
    Editorial note: Locating the humanistic within the study of religions2015In: Temenos, ISSN 0497-1817, E-ISSN 2342-7256, Vol. 51, no 2, p. 155-159Article in journal (Refereed)
  • 2.
    Arvidsson, Stefan
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Cultural Sciences.
    The humanistic study of religions: An obscure tradition illuminated by the ‘Knights of Labor’2015In: Temenos, ISSN 0497-1817, E-ISSN 2342-7256, Vol. 51, no 2, p. 227-256Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Today ‘humanistic’ and ‘humanities’ are terms rarely used in discussions on methodology and epistemology within the study/history of religions. This article laments this state of affair and reminds the readers of same basic advantages of a humanistic study of religions in comparison to chiefly social scientific approaches to religion and culture. After an initial philosophical argument on the implications of ‘humanistic’, the article touches upon the significance of historical failures, utopianism, empathy and ‘the orectic’. These discussions take place against an analysis of the mythology and ritual life of the 19th century, American, socialist order The Knight of Labor.

  • 3.
    Svensson, Jonas
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Cultural Sciences.
    Hurting the Qur'an: Suggestions Concerning the Psychological Infrastructure of Desecration2017In: Temenos, ISSN 0497-1817, E-ISSN 2342-7256, Vol. 53, no 2, p. 243-264Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Recent years have witnessed several examples of desecrations of copies of the Qur’an as a display of non-Muslim hostility against Muslims. The present article attempts to answer a fundamental question relating to this phenomenon: how do desecrators know what acts directed at the Qur’an are likely to offend Muslims? The suggestion put forward is that desecration is an act that can be understood across cultural and religious boundaries because it is based on shared, intuitive knowledge of what the sacredness of an object entails. This knowledge, in turn, rests upon certain mental operations involved in the process of sacralisation: i.e. when things are ‘set apart and forbidden’. When the mental processes of psychological essentialism and conceptual blending are combined, it results in a partial personification of the sacred object, providing inferences concerning which acts count as desecrations, i.e. acts that, had they been directed at a person, would cause harm, whether physical or psychological.

  • 4.
    Svensson, Jonas
    Linnaeus University, Faculty of Arts and Humanities, Department of Cultural Sciences.
    Religious education and teaching young people about humanity: Suggesting a new role for RE and for the academic study of religions in Sweden2015In: Temenos, ISSN 0497-1817, E-ISSN 2342-7256, Vol. 51, no 2, p. 177-199Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    This article is a suggestion for the rethinking of the role and purpose of religious education (RE) in Swedish public schools, in relation to two major recent reforms: of teachers training (2012) and of syllabi for RE (2011). Based on a notion of the ‘humanistic’ study of religions as he study of religion as a human cultural product, the article argues that a RE – mainly in lower and upper secondary school – informed by contemporary theoretical development, better than any other school subject can cater for the important task of educating young people about who they, as human beings, are and why. To substantiate this claim, the content of the above mentioned reforms are presented, and placed in historical context. Furthermore, the article provides a set of examples of how actual teaching may be structured to fulfil its proposed new task, with a basis in the current syllabi for lower and upper secondary school.

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