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  • Cited by 5
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    This article has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Hegmon, Michelle 2016. 1 Archaeology of the Human Experience: An Introduction. Archeological Papers of the American Anthropological Association, Vol. 27, Issue. 1, p. 7.

    Laughlin, Charles D. and Rock, Adam J. 2013. The Wiley-Blackwell Handbook of Transpersonal Psychology.

    Wills, W. 2012. On the Trail of the Lonesome Pine: Archaeological Paradigms and the Chaco "Tree of Life". American Antiquity, Vol. 77, Issue. 3, p. 478.

    Aimers, James J. 2007. What Maya Collapse? Terminal Classic Variation in the Maya Lowlands. Journal of Archaeological Research, Vol. 15, Issue. 4, p. 329.

    Joyce, Rosemary A. 2005. ARCHAEOLOGY OF THE BODY. Annual Review of Anthropology, Vol. 34, Issue. 1, p. 139.


Beyond Belief: Religious Experience, Ritual, and Cultural Neuro-phenomenology in the Interpretation of Past Religious Systems

  • Jennifer L. Dornan (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 01 June 2004

While there is growing agreement within anthropology and archaeology that notions of ‘experience’ can contribute to our interpretations of the past, this article suggests that there is a need to incorporate insight gathered from the fields of cultural phenomenology and cultural neuro-phenomenology into general anthropological understandings of cross-cultural religious experience. Specifically, this article explores the insight offered by cultural neuro-phenomenology into the relationships between religious symbolism, ritual, power, religious belief, and individual religious experience. In assessing the role that belief, as instantiated through ritually-induced religious experience, plays in the maintenance or alteration of state-level religious systems, this article will outline the ways in which this insight may both help us better to understand past religious experience as well as to interpret the maintenance and alteration of past religious systems. To demonstrate the potential of this approach, this article will conclude with a brief discussion of the fall of the Classic Maya state religious system.

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Cambridge Archaeological Journal
  • ISSN: 0959-7743
  • EISSN: 1474-0540
  • URL: /core/journals/cambridge-archaeological-journal
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