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Religion in the everyday lives of second-generation Jains in Britain and the USA: resources offered by a dharma-based South Asian religion for the construction of religious biographies, and negotiating risk and uncertainty in late modern societies

Religion in the everyday lives of second-generation Jains in Britain and the USA: resources offered by a dharma-based South Asian religion for the construction of religious biographies, and negotiating risk and uncertainty in late modern societies
Religion in the everyday lives of second-generation Jains in Britain and the USA: resources offered by a dharma-based South Asian religion for the construction of religious biographies, and negotiating risk and uncertainty in late modern societies
While the growth of spiritualties is associated with post-traditional societies and the ability of individuals to engage in reflexive construction of religious biographies in late modernity, these arguments ignore various dimensions of reflexivity and processes of re-traditionalization. In this article I explore linkages and affinity between social discourses in late modernity and a religion, with a distinctive ontology, originating in South Asia. Drawing on qualitative data, I examine processes involved in the construction of a religious self among second-generation Jains in Britain and the USA. Living in late modern societies, young Jains have established a reflexive habitus. Such reflexivity has affinity with a neo-orthodox tendency in Jainism that rejects the authority of ascetics and rituals while elevating one's own knowledge, discipline and insights in the construction of a Jain biography. I find that neo-orthodox Jainism provides resources for young Jains to constantly reflect on and actively choose how to be a Jain; to enact cataphatic reflexivity in the construction of a Jain self. For some second-generation Jains, the Jain tradition also provides resources to enact a non-instrumental, apophatic reflexivity; a calm equanimous state that enables them to create ontological security in the face of risks and uncertainty in late modernity
0038-0261
512-529
Shah, Bindi
c5c7510a-3b3d-4d12-a02a-c98e09734166
Shah, Bindi
c5c7510a-3b3d-4d12-a02a-c98e09734166

Shah, Bindi (2014) Religion in the everyday lives of second-generation Jains in Britain and the USA: resources offered by a dharma-based South Asian religion for the construction of religious biographies, and negotiating risk and uncertainty in late modern societies. The Sociological Review, 62 (3), 512-529. (doi:10.1111/1467-954X.12177).

Record type: Article

Abstract

While the growth of spiritualties is associated with post-traditional societies and the ability of individuals to engage in reflexive construction of religious biographies in late modernity, these arguments ignore various dimensions of reflexivity and processes of re-traditionalization. In this article I explore linkages and affinity between social discourses in late modernity and a religion, with a distinctive ontology, originating in South Asia. Drawing on qualitative data, I examine processes involved in the construction of a religious self among second-generation Jains in Britain and the USA. Living in late modern societies, young Jains have established a reflexive habitus. Such reflexivity has affinity with a neo-orthodox tendency in Jainism that rejects the authority of ascetics and rituals while elevating one's own knowledge, discipline and insights in the construction of a Jain biography. I find that neo-orthodox Jainism provides resources for young Jains to constantly reflect on and actively choose how to be a Jain; to enact cataphatic reflexivity in the construction of a Jain self. For some second-generation Jains, the Jain tradition also provides resources to enact a non-instrumental, apophatic reflexivity; a calm equanimous state that enables them to create ontological security in the face of risks and uncertainty in late modernity

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More information

e-pub ahead of print date: 1 August 2014
Published date: August 2014
Additional Information: Funded by ESRC: Ethnicity (RES-063-27-0131)
Organisations: Sociology, Social Policy & Criminology

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 368799
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/368799
ISSN: 0038-0261
PURE UUID: 40ef38a1-2e76-41ed-8a1b-d4408f9b719e
ORCID for Bindi Shah: ORCID iD orcid.org/0000-0002-5571-9755

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 24 Nov 2014 09:09
Last modified: 26 Oct 2019 00:33

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