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Contemplative Studies Unit

Call for Proposals for November Meeting

This year, the Contemplative Studies Unit especially invites proposals addressing the role of different epistemologies relative to Contemplative Studies, comparative or otherwise. Particularly we are looking for papers on:

  • a panel on epistemologies for contemplative studies.
  • connected to this, a cross-cultural revisitation of concepts of contemplative studies as a perennialist project.
  • a panel addressing conceptions of the subtle body within praxis.
  • a panel dedicated to ethnographic conceptions.
  • a panel focusing on micro-phenomenology to follow up on the past year's panel on micro-phenomenology.
  • a panel exploring Contemplative praxis and research in relation to information, AI and its ramifications with ChatGPT.


Individual papers could not find a home in currently listed panels.

Contact Loriliai Biernacki, or Michael Sheehy,

      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.


      Steering Committee Members


      Review Process

      Proposer names are visible to chairs but anonymous to steering committee members