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In And Out Of Place: Varieties Of Religious Locations In A Globalising World

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Chapter Summary

The perception of religion as "out of place" rests on an underlying assumption that there is a way in which religion could (and should) be in place. Using Max Weber's (1949) concept of "ideal types", this chapter considers a variety of ways in which religion might be located with reference to the state, the society and the individual. These relationships fall into three broad groupings: the criteria determining whether religion is "in place" or "out of place" are based on responses to three related but separate questions. What is the legal/political relationship between church and state? What are the socio-cultural relations between religion and the society? What are the different theological criteria for conferring a religious identity upon an individual? Not only has globalisation brought about a demand for alternative beliefs and practices, it has also increased the supply of potential options available to any one individual.

Keywords: church; globalisation; legal/political relationship; Max Weber; religious identity; socio-cultural relations



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