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Rituals of faith and religion during uncertain times [The Ritual Year] 
Irina Stahl (Institute of Sociology, Romanian Academy)
Maria Bernadette L. Abrera (University of the Philippines Diliman)
Jesus Federico Hernandez (University of the Philippines)
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Friday 9 June, -, -
Time zone: Europe/Prague

Short Abstract:

Faith & religion help people and communities cope with the unexpected. While core elements remain, ritual forms are adapted to times and threats. Through narratives of historical and recent periods of uncertainty, rituals are seen as an important channel for coping with uncertainty.

Long Abstract:

In a crisis, faith provides an important way for people to cope with distress and danger. Rituals and religious routines provide comfort and predictability in uncertain times through familiar words, gestures, and sounds. They foster connectedness with the community, the past, and a conception of the divine. Rituals allow communities to recall previous crises, connecting people to a common past they survived, as a group. Remembering through ritual provides hope that will get them through the present peril.

While essential elements of religious responses to uncertainty may remain constant, rituals adapt to the context of the threat as people attempt to cope with new adversities. Folk religion in particular has developed an adaptation mechanism to meet people's immediate needs and explore ways to respond to unexpected challenges.

This panel welcomes papers dealing with examples (historical or recent) of how faith and religion provide ways to respond to crisis and uncertainty.

• Colonisation and the emergence of new or syncretic religious rituals.

• Faith and religion during natural disasters (pandemic, drought, earthquakes etc.) or social conflicts; or, in the life cycle of individuals, sudden, unexpected occurrences (illness, accident, or death).

• How were religious rituals performed during totalitarian regimes which banned them in public?

• How were religious rituals performed during the pandemic when public gatherings were banned and physical distancing was required?

• Which rituals were controversial during the pandemic, and how did religious institutions respond?

• Which changes in rituals that occurred during the pandemic continue today?

Accepted papers:

Session 1 Friday 9 June, 2023, -
Session 2 Friday 9 June, 2023, -