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Taiwanese People’s Cultural-Psychological Images of Gods and Divine Power
religious experience;religion in Taiwan;image of god
|Issue Date:||2018-03-16 14:08:58 (UTC+8)|
The religious landscape in Taiwan is home to a vast pantheon of gods. According to the Religious Experience Survey in Taiwan (REST), there are very few interviewees who have never worshipped any god. 76.3% of the total interviewees (1,714) consider worship or prayer important. Many interviewees report that they have experiences of being moved, protected, or blessed by a divine power. Since experiences of gods or divine powers constitute a very significant role in people’s religious lives, this research explores the cultural and psychological images of gods and divine power in Taiwan. It explores the narrative accounts provided in answers to open-ended questions of REST. In addition, we analyzed the data from a preliminary study of “drawing images of gods or divine power” covering people from various religious backgrounds. Through analysis of narrations and of pictorial representations of gods and divine power, this research explores Taiwanese people’s cultural and psychological characterizations of transcendental power. Analysis of narrative accounts suggests Taiwanese people have a prototyical image of protection and blessings. They characterize gods or divine power as benevolent powers that guide, protect, care for, or heal people in their daily life. These images are held by respondents from various religions, including respondents who consider themselves non-religious. Preliminary findings from the project that involved the pictorial drawing of images indicate that there is a similar core image of gods or divine power for Taiwanese people. Pictorial analysis revealed creative illustration based on religious traditions. In Taiwan, various religions coexist in the same society. As variegated as it looks, the reciprocal relationship between gods and human beings constitutes the experiential ground for formation of images of gods.
|Relation:||華人宗教研究, 2, 101-133|
|Appears in Collections:||[Studies in Chinese Religions ] Journal Articles|
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