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Religious Experience
A2 Philosophy…read more

Slide 2

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What counts as a religious
Religious can be referred to as something divine, sacred and/or
holy, as well as referring to a set of beliefs. An experience is
can be defined as something which we go through during our
life. Something which happens to us. Experiences are often
personal and therefore, can often be defined as objective.
Using these explanations we can conclude that a religious
experience is literally anything that an individual experiences
and derives from divine and holy origins. However, the most
common religious experiences include:
· Conversion
· Near-death
· Mystical
· Corporate
· Revelatory…read more

Slide 3

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What is conversion?
Conversion can refer to a number of things. It can be the
conversion of an individual from one religion to another, as well
as the conversion of an individual from being non-religious to
religious. Less commonly, it can also refer to things such as
`moral conversion' (William James) where protestants turn from
living lives of sin to `conviction of sin'…read more

Slide 4

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Conversion- Paul the
Apostle I'm a
In the bible, Paul the apostle (who first appeared as `Saul')
experiences conversion. He said: "I was violently persecuting the
church of God and was trying to destroy it" (Galatians 1:13).
After this proclamation, Saul was met by a risen Jesus in a
divine vision whilst on his way to `hunt' Christians in Damascus.
From this meeting, Saul was asked "why persecutest thou me?"
(Acts 9:4) told to take the Gospel to the gentiles. Once occurring
as a person whom endorsed the stoning of Christians, `Paul'
now was a convert who became an authoritative preacher of
the gospel…read more

Slide 5

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An analogy which can help understand conversion is the
idea of a set of scales. Testimonies from converts suggest
their experience led them to feel spiritually balanced for the
first time.
There are several ways which conversion can be interpreted and
understood: Some claim that
religious experiences
· God directly intervening to direct them to religion (Saul/Paul). and conversion lead
· An individual attributes the end of an emotionally turbulent time to to the balancing of the
new found religious belief. scales!!
· A person `finds what they have been looking for' spiritually.
· Somebody finds acceptance within a religion they previously didn't
These are just some explanations/ examples!!!…read more

Slide 6

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Conversion- William
Argued two basic types of conversion:
Volitional Type- A conscious and voluntary experience. A person decides
they want to make spiritual changes to their life, and set about doing
so. For example someone may wish to become Christian, study the
bible and the churches teachings and then have some profound
experience in which they feel a deep connection to God, this is the
pinnacle of his/her religious `training'
Self-surrender Type- This type of conversion can be described as when William James-
someone feels they have done all they can do and `gives-up'- leaving Psychologist
it to God.
who focused on
James believes conversion comes when we are not looking for it, and
likens it to when we forget a name of someone (actor ect) when experiences.
trying to remember, for it to come to us later when we least expect it.
James says that conversion can therefore be attributed to the
subconscious or divine intervention.…read more

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