Corporate Experiences Overview

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Corporate Experiences
A corporate experience is an experience of God experienced by a group of people. Naturally, these
experiences have more credibility than other forms of religious experiences as more people
experienced it and thus there are more testimonies.
Examples of this include the story of the Pentecost when Jesus' disciples were given the gift of
glossolalia (the ability to speak in tongues) so that they could spread the message of God and the
Toronto Blessing, where the Holy Spirit is reported to have visited worshippers and given them the
ability to speak in tongues as well as laughing and crying hysterically.
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It is possible that the experiences are simply examples of convergence. Psychologists have
noted that we converge to the norm of a situation and therefore, if eberuone else is
laughing, you are likely to laugh too for fear of missing out or appearing to be different.
This is especially relevant when considering religion as people are more likely to converge
as they do not want to be seen as not `touched by God' when everyone else is.
Corporate religious experiences could simply be a result of mass hysteria.
It is arguable that a mass religious experience is no more likely, or has no more credibility,
than a personal one.
We can also question why God would hypnotise a small group of people when there are
such terrors in the world as famine and war.

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