Ruminations on literature, film, life, and what-have-you.

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

'Tis a Season to be Busy

A flurry of activities. For religious, moreso for priests, the seasons of Advent and Christmas are the most demanding. Well, there are of course, Christmas parties to attend, and come December 16, the Simbang Gabi novena dawn masses begin. That means getting up at 3:00 am for a 4:00 am mass everyday until the 25th.

For us scholastics and brothers, it means trying to help out, accompanying priests, helping with homilies, and of course trying to meet all of our deadlines before the Christmas break (which incidentally will be on the 22nd). It means braving the traffic to buy the perfect gifts for people who have touched your life. It means sleepless nights of balancing all of these activities and somehow trying to maintain our sanity.

For me, it means research, research and research. I am still trying to produce a decent proposal and that means reading more journals and books on the subject matter. I am currently perusing the book, The Psychology of Religion specifically studying religious experience and emotion.

Since I am going to study how display screens in liturgy affect religious experience, I need to have some way of analyzing emotions empirically. The book will help me provide the framework of the study.

There is a part of me telling me that I am treading into heretical ground since there is a risk of looking at the experience purely in an empirical manner—it is, after all a scientific investigation. But another part of me tells me that, done well, the study can help enhance the religious experience of parishioners whenever they celebrate mass. But it is a religious experience and so it involves not only screens and liturgical soundness, but a people and their God.


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