Ossetian Ritual Feasts and Transpersonal Experience: Re-description of a Religion as a Religious Practice
AbstractThe protest of the North Ossetian nativist religious movement against discourses of dominant institutions in the public sphere involves as its necessary component ‘re-description’ of religion in general and ‘re-constructed’ religious systems in particular. Usually, this means revealing allegedly forgotten ancient meanings of indigenous customs, rituals and folklore texts through the use of various concepts taken from esotericism and/or practical psychology. The language for this re-description is provided by conceptual apparatus developed by New Age movements. Of particular interest in this respect is the language of ‘new science’, ‘alternative history’, ‘transpersonal psychology’, etc., employed as a tool for criticising the established system of Christian-centric understanding of what religion is and what its social functions are.
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