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Religious Praxis—De-Institutionalized. Theoretical And Empirical Considerations

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Chapter Summary

Deinstitutionalization describes a change, a transformation. Modernization has been the most prominent paradigm to interpret the changes which have influenced the religious domain. The understanding of 'deinstitutionalization' rests on the understanding of 'institution'. An institution, in a process perspective, integrates the individual and his or her biography into a societal system of values and rules. For empirical investigation of deinstitutionalization of religion, it is inspiring to evaluate what has been completed so far in the research on deconversion. 'Deinstitutionalized religion' covers to large extent what 'spirituality' is expected to signify. For a conceptualization of religion and deinstitutionalized religion, however, Kaufmann's six zones appear adequate, because they are more comprehensive and, at the same time, more specific: they embrace, in a rather cumulative or multi-perspective manner, and can be associated with, a variety of theoretical conceptualizations of religion, but these are not taken as mutually exclusive.

Keywords: deconversion; deinstitutionalized religion; empirical investigation; Kaufmann's six zones; modernization; religious praxis; spirituality; theoretical conceptualization



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