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The Varieties of Religious Experience Themes

This Study Guide consists of approximately 66 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Varieties of Religious Experience.
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Themes

Religion

In order to talk about religious experience, James must first define the term religion. He quickly points out that the main theme of his lectures is not the institution of religion but rather the personal experience of it. His focus is on the psychological aspects of religion, and to do this, he must deal with the individual. Following the same premise, he also states that it is not the rules and rituals of religious experience in which he is interested but the religious feelings and the emotions of the individual. To this end, he relies on stories about people he has known and works of literature and autobiography he has read. He writes that he does not want to use examples from religious people who follow "the conventional observances" of their country. In other words, he does not want to use examples of people who comply with the...

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This section contains 1,182 words
(approx. 4 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our The Varieties of Religious Experience Study Guide
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The Varieties of Religious Experience from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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