PAPERS Resources

AAR Annual Meeting
Denver, CO
November 17-20, 2018

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Contemplative Studies Unit

Statement of Purpose: 

This program unit aims to strengthen and develop contemplative studies as an academic field of inquiry, especially in the context of religious studies and the AAR. Our Unit provides a forum for:

• The investigation of contemplative practice and experience, considered inclusively and comprehensively
• Critical discussions on the field itself, including theoretical and interpretive issues
• The application of contemplative practice to academic life and university culture, including the possible contribution of “contemplative pedagogy” to teaching and learning

The Unit thus aims to gather together currently diffused groups as well as dislocated, marginalized, and underrepresented individuals in the academy. To this end, we encourage research that is topical, tradition-specific, comparative, and cross-cultural. We also invite scholars to investigate contemplative practice and experience in ways that traverse and transcend the boundaries of traditions, disciplines, and research methodologies.

Call for Papers: 

We welcome paper and panel proposals that address the following topics in comparative perspective, with emphasis on critical first-person approaches:

• The critical first-person component in Contemplative Studies research methodology. What does this look like?
• The dynamics of intersubjective contemplative practices
• Book Panel: Introducing Contemplative Studies, by Louis Komjathy (SUNY 2017)
• Relationship between kataphatic- and apophatic-style practices within a single tradition, with comparisons between tradition
• How can compassion be trained (cross-tradition approaches)?
• Varieties of breath practices across traditions

We also welcome panel proposals on any other topic related to Contemplative Studies.

Proposals are anonymous to chairs and steering committee members until after final acceptance/rejection
We are a model of fair and transparent evaluation. We endeavor to evaluate paper and panel proposals on academic merit alone
ChairSteering Committee