Designing Rites to Re-enchant Secularized Society: New Varieties of Spiritualized Therapy in Contemporary Sweden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Detraditionalization in late modernity has both affected traditional religion and the domain of clinical therapy. Sweden, which is said to be one of the most secularized societies in the world, instead has allowed the public domain to be colonized by new, spiritualized practices. Sold as therapy, the services of new spiritual leaders offer anti-stress techniques to prevent burn-out, or leaders are trained to develop their leadership in coaching activities. New varieties of spiritualized therapy are rapidly increasing in contemporary Sweden, typical of which is to have added healing rhetoric to their agenda, such as "find your inner self" or "develop your inner potential". Four common denominators seem to guide these practices: self-made leaders, individual-centered rites, realization of one’s Self, and intense emotions. We might also add a fifth aspect: profit. Rites have become a commodity and are sold as liberating practices for burnt-out souls or for people in pursuit of self-realization.

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Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • History of Religions

Keywords

  • New spiritual practices, therapy, coaching activities, commodification of rites
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Religion and Health
Volumeonline 25 May 2010
Publication statusPublished - 2010
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes

Bibliographic note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015. The record was previously connected to the following departments: Centre for Theology and Religious Studies (015017000)