Accepted Paper:

Religious experience among the members of Hare Krishna community in Zagreb, Croatia: approaches and interpretations  


Hrvoje Čargonja (Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, University of Zagreb)

Paper short abstract:

Examples of case studies on the religious experience among the members of Hare Krishna in Zagreb, Croatia with some theoretical approaches will be discussed using the notions of «captivated consciousness», «cultivated imagination» as well as Indian conceptions of emotion in rasa theory.

Paper long abstract:

In my presentation I would like to give an overview of my ongoing research on the religious experience among the members of Hare Krishna, a religious community active in Zagreb, Croatia since the late seventies.

The applied phenomenological methodology revealed religious sensations reported by the informants with a variety of sensorial, cognitive and affective elements.

On the examples of several case studies I would like to show how intimate and subjective reality of the supernatural is shaped by social environment satiated with complex theological beliefs and practices systematically applied in the pursuit of the ultimate aim of Vaishnava systematic theology - creating the experience of love of Krishna.

I shall also try to propose several theoretical approaches adopted in the line of phenomenological framework of my research. Notions of «captivated consciousness», and «cultivated imagination» as well as the Indian conceptions of emotion in rasa* theory will be discussed. Such reflections will hopefully prove useful in better understanding how Hare Krishna theistic philosophy and culture with its elaborate and repetitive method of imbuing religious practice with devotional passion facilitates experience conceptualization and it's immediate impact on both subjective and social levels of an individual.

• flavour, taste, aesthetic or religious sentiment, charm of exchange in a relationship

Panel W094
Rethinking spirit possession