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Religion, spirituality and the social sciencesChallenging marginalisation$
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Basia Spalek and Alia Imtoual

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9781847420411

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781847420411.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM POLICY PRESS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.policypress.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Policy Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PPSO for personal use.date: 20 September 2021

Turning the world upside down

Turning the world upside down

(p.107) Eight Turning the world upside down
Religion, spirituality and the social sciences

Caroline Humphrey

Policy Press

This chapter introduces a radical approach in examining the differences between world-views and their impact for research in the social sciences and practice in caring professions. The first section discusses four world-views — secular, spiritual, scientific, and religious — with reference to their philosophical premises. The scientific world-view inverts the secular world-view to such extent that scientists uncover deeper truths and realities of human beings and planet earth. The spiritual and religious world-view on the other hand involves an inversion of both secular and scientific world-views to such an extent that they invoke metaphysical truths and realities beyond human beings and earth. The rest of the chapter discusses how the contemporary co-existence of world-views generates issues and problems for researchers and practitioners. The social sciences were conceived from the womb of a secular and scientific world that stripped the meta-physical realm of any reality, but they are now inhibiting multicultural societies in an era of globalisation, where religion and spiritual world-views exist alongside secular and scientific world-views. However, to move forward and to gain fruitful results, the chapter concludes that a ‘journeying’ between life worlds and world-views is necessary as well as the deconstruction of antimonies between science and spirituality.

Keywords:   world-views, social sciences, secular world-views, spiritual world-views, scientific world-views, religious world-views, spirituality

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