The healing subconscious: refocusing the historiography of psychology and religion through the Emmanuel Movement

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2009-12

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Ozanne, Rachel Lauren

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Abstract

The Emmanuel Movement is frequently cited by scholars of the history of religion and psychology in the United States. While the story of the movement has been told many times, scholars have missed key ideas about the movement that become clear when we compare the various historical approaches to the movement. I review the Emmanuel Movement’s ideas, taking note of its intellectual influences, its relationship to other liberal Protestant traditions, and its place in turn-of-the-century culture. By reviewing the ideas of the movement, I observe that the Emmanuel Movement brings into focus previously obscure intellectual figures in the history of the movement, foreshadows late-twentieth century cooperation between medicine and religion through mindfulness movements, and highlights a strand of liberal Protestantism that originates in a Jamesian psychology of the healing subconscious. This new look at the Emmanuel Movement thus provides new avenues of inquiry for students of religion and psychology.

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