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Bibil Identifier bibil:251118
Publication Type Article of book
Title (English, Long) Linguistics and the Scientific Study of Religion
Title (English, ) Prayer as a Cognitive Register
Author Downes, William
Edited book Religion, Language, and the Human Mind
Year (Reference) 2018
Language English
Pages 89-114 Pages
Genre Original
Abstract Registers of language are cultural templates, normatively constituting the situation types that make up a culture, and yet reciprocally determined by the situation’s linguistic requirements. This chapter proposes that a register such as prayer has typical psychological effects within the mind/brain of its users. These make it also a cognitive register, a linguistically enabled and shaped way of thinking and feeling. This process is analysed using cognitive pragmatics, more specifically relevance theory. Processing petitionary prayer can produce specific psychological effects. It is proposed that the petitions are not directive speech acts, but tools for learning. Petitionary prayer also shapes affectivity and motivation. This is explored using Panksepp’s concept of the SEEKING system. The mind-brain of one who prays is trained into habits of understanding and feeling otherwise unavailable. By bringing together these two approaches, the sociological and the psychological, the essay investigates how a cultural linguistic practice shapes religious cognition.
DOI 10.1093/oso/9780190636647.003.0004
Keywords Thesaurus BiBIL : Unbound Keywords : Theolinguistic
Links Online document (HTML, English)
Last modification 2018-10-02