Contemporary Approaches and Debates

  • Nelson J
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So far we have been concerned with great historic movements in the dialogue between psychology and religion. Where is the field headed next? While predictions about the future are dangerous to make, in this chapter we review three prominent movements within psychology that are likely to affect the dialogue with religion. These are: (1) neurobiological approaches that utilize our expanding knowledge of the structure and workings of the brain; (2) evolutionary and cognitive psychology, which have developed a combined approach to the study of religion; and (3) postmodern perspectives, which challenge many of our conventional understandings of the human person and suggest new ways to think about religious life and the spiritual quest.




Nelson, J. M. (2009). Contemporary Approaches and Debates. In Psychology, Religion, and Spirituality (pp. 175–208). Springer New York.

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