Nomenclature Confusion

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Nomenclature Confusion refers to the proliferation of terms used to describe Connection, [[[Connection Experience]], and Connection Outcomes. Nomenclature confusion is the result of theoretical and empirical confusion amongst scholars who study Connection Experience, and cultural, dogmatic, and individual differences between individuals who have Connection Experiences. Cultural, dogmatic, and individual differences lead to idiosyncratic explanations and expression, which adds to the nomenclature confusion.

Notes

"On the other hand, the genuine inquirer will find before long a number of self-appointed apostles who are eager to answer his question in many strange and inconsistent ways, calculated to increase rather than resolve the obscurity of his mind. He will learn that mysticism is a philosophy, an illusion, a kind of religion, a disease; that it means having visions, performing conjuring tricks, leading an idle, dreamy, and selfish life, neglecting one's business, wallowing in vague spiritual emotions, and being "in tune with the infinite." He will discover that it emancipates him from all dogmas--sometimes from all morality--and at the same time that it is very superstitious. One expert tells him that it is simply "Catholic piety," another that Walt Whitman was a typical mystic; a third assures him that all mysticism comes from the East, and supports his statement by an appeal to the mango trick. At the end of a prolonged course of lectures, sermons, tea-parties, and talks with earnest persons, the inquirer is still heard saying--too often in tones of exasperation--"What is mysticism?" [1]

"Earlier studies conducted both with college students and with a national sample administered by the Gallup Organization indicate that ecstatic experiences occur frequently, and may differ according to the social position of the respondent." [2]

"Persons of lower socio-economic status who are affiliated with the Southern Baptist church frequently report experiences which are triggered by religious phenomena and which are described as part of a religious context; persons of higher socio-economic status who do not have affiliations with a fundamentalistic church report experiences that are triggered by a wide variety of triggers and which are described and utilized in more diverse ways" [3]

Those with college education tend to report mystical experiencing using an aesthetic, neutral, secular language. Those with less education and a religious background use the language of their religion [4].

"In contrast, persons who are not familiar with this language or who wish to dissociate themselves from institutionalized religion find it more difficult to describe ecstatic feeling states, and in their struggle to verbalize the experience they utilize a much wider range of language symbols. [5]

"In the present study the transcendental experience, triggered by a range of events, is interpreted according to social position and the corresponding general frame of reference of the subjects."[6]

"In essence, we find a specific type of emotional experience which is variously interpreted as a religious or aesthetic experience depending on the general frame of mind which the subject brings to the experience."[7]


Footnotes

  1. Underhill, Evelyn. Mysticism: A Study in the Nature and Development of Spiritual Consciousness. New York: Dover Publications, 2002. https://amzn.to/2C91xNY.
  2. Bourque, Linda Brookover, and Kurt W. Back. “Language, Society and Subjective Experience.” Sociometry 34, no. 1 (1971): 8.
  3. Bourque, Linda Brookover, and Kurt W. Back. “Language, Society and Subjective Experience.” Sociometry 34, no. 1 (1971): 8.
  4. Bourque, Linda Brookover, and Kurt W. Back. “Language, Society and Subjective Experience.” Sociometry 34, no. 1 (1971):
  5. Bourque, Linda Brookover, and Kurt W. Back. “Language, Society and Subjective Experience.” Sociometry 34, no. 1 (1971): 18.
  6. Bourque, Linda Brookover, and Kurt W. Back. “Language, Society and Subjective Experience.” Sociometry 34, no. 1 (1971): 18.
  7. Bourque, Linda Brookover, and Kurt W. Back. “Language, Society and Subjective Experience.” Sociometry 34, no. 1 (1971): 18.
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