Networked Religion: Considering Religion in Online and Offline Cultures

Here is the recorded webinar from Dr. Heidi Campbell, Assoc Prof, Texas A&M University. heidic@tamu.edu. Scroll down for the notes and additional information.

Here is the link to the recent article she wrote about this topic.

Here is a summary outline from the presentation…

¨Networked Religion represents a loosening or re-presentation of traditional boundaries of religious communities to reflect more dynamic and fluid forms of affiliation and practice.

Characteristics of Networked Religion

1.  Convergent Practice

–  Personalized blending of information & rituals.

–  Internet serves as a spiritual hub allowing people to assemble and personalize religious behavior and belief.

–  Tension: Offering guidance and instruction to people who draw spiritual wisdom and practices from multiple sources and traditions.

2.  Multi-site Reality

– Embedded online-offline connections.

–  Recognizing the interconnectedness or embeddedness of online and offline contexts.

– Tension: Offline contexts may no longer serve as primary source for spiritual connections and knowledge.

3.  Networked Community

– Loosely-bounded social networks.

4. Storied Identity

– Fluid & dynamic identity construction.

–  Identity is constructed & performed online, encouraging malleable self-presentations.

–  Tension: Religious Identity becomes flexible and highly personalized, impacting wider understandings of what it means to be Christian.

5. Shifting Authority

– Simultaneous empowerment & challenge of authority.

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