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Open Theology: Phenomenology of Religious Experience



Dr. Olga Louchakova-Schwartz, Graduate Theological Union (Berkeley) and the Society for the Phenomenology of Religious Experience

Courtenay Crouch, California Institute of Integral Studies and the Society for Phenomenology of Religious Experience 




"Open Theology" (http://www.degruyter.com/view/j/opth) invites submissions for the topical issue "Phenomenology of Religious Experience", prepared in collaboration with the Society in Phenomenology of Religious Experience (www.sophere.org). The topic is Phenomenology of Religious Experience, broadly understood across several disciplines, phenomenological  philosophy and psychology, theology, philosophy of religion, and traditional and cultural philosophies and psychologies.  The papers are invited to cover the following areas: phenomenological ontologies of religious experience, theologies related to religious experience, and descriptive phenomenology and the method, with the examples, case studies, and original research.


We  welcome all those valuable contributions that focus on the relationship between phenomenology and metaphysics. These contributions can come from philosophical perspective as well as from the traditional religious scholarship, but the speakers are asked to self-identify their stance. In particular, we will be interested in papers that examine the existential status of the religious experience. The recent writings in philosophy of religion indicate that there is question if such status actually exists (e.g. constructivist perspectives such as e.g. Penner, recent debates in cognitive science of religion, or analytical criticism of Zangwill). We welcome papers which consider such perspectives in dialog with traditional phenomenological approaches in the work of Husserl, Stein, Heidegger, Henry, Levinas, Marion, Conrad Martius, Tymieniecka,  Schutz, in classical phenomenology, contemporary phenomenology, and the phenomenology of life. 


We would like to discuss how phenomenology can increase our actual understanding of religious experience. In particular, we would welcome papers that develop two directions of inquiries: the phenomenological method through which it is possible to pursue the study of religious experience and the descriptive phenomenology of experience itself, which has been insufficiently pursued. This includes perspectives in cognitive science of religion, should the authors want to establish an interpretive link between phenomenology of religious experience and experimental research.


Authors publishing their articles in the topical issue will benefit from:

  • transparent, comprehensive and fast peer review,
  • efficient route to fast-track publication and full advantage of De Gruyter Open’s e-technology, 
  • free language assistance for authors from non-English speaking regions,
  • complementary membership in the Society for Phenomenology of Religious Experience on favorable conditions.


Publication costs should be covered by so called Article Processing Charges (APC), paid by authors, their affiliated institutions, funders or sponsors. Authors who would like to apply for discounts or free publication are asked to discuss it with Managing Editor of the journal Dr. Katarzyna Tempczyk (katarzyna.tempczyk@degruyteropen.com) before submitting their article.





Submissions are due June 1, 2017. To submit an article for the special issue of Open Theology, authors are asked to access the on-line submission system at: http://www.editorialmanager.com/openth/


Please choose as article type: “Topical Issue Article: Phenomenology of Religious Experience”.


Before submission the authors should carefully read over the Instruction for Authors, available at: http://www.degruyter.com/view/supplement/s23006579_Instruction_for_Authors.pdf 


All contributions will undergo critical review before being accepted for publication.


Further questions about this thematic issue can be addressed to Dr. Olga Louchakova-Schwartz at olouchakova@gmail.com. In case of technical or financial questions, please contact journal Managing Editor Dr. Katarzyna Tempczyk at katarzyna.tempczyk@degruyteropen.com.