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October 2021

The Holy Spirit as conscience collective

Journal/Book: Sociol Relig. 1999; 60: Marist Hall Room 108, Catholic Univ America, Washington, DC 20064, USA. Assoc Sociology Religion. 341-361.

Abstract: Catholic Charismatics often talk about ''God,'' ''Jesus,'' ''the Holy Spirit,'' or simply ''the Lord'' as an active partner in interaction. Most sociologists regard such statements as outside the epistemological purview of an empirical discipline; God is relegated to the inaccessible domain of the ''specifically religious.'' In this paper I suggest that ''the Holy Spirit'' is a manifestation of a learnable pattern of social interaction that may generate a superindividual dialogic unity, what Durkheim called a conscience collective, or what has more recently been called shared or distributed cognition. The internalization of this intersubjective process then becomes the basis for the intrasubjective experience of dialogue with the divine.

Note: Article Lawson MP, Coll New Jersey, Dept Anthropol & Sociol, Ewing,NJ 08628 USA

Keyword(s): SOCIOLOGY


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