, Volume 60, Issue 4, pp 505-521
Date: 28 May 2010

The Step Model of Transformative Religious Experiences: A Phenomenological Understanding of Religious Conversions in India

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Abstract

This is a phenomenological study of individual conversion experiences to Christianity from different religious traditions in India. The author has collected 165 accounts of conversion experiences by using maximum variant sampling and multiple methods of data collection. By using grounded theory, the author has generated a step model of transformative religious experiences. The step model incorporates the religious experience in conversion to which the converts attribute great significance. It accommodates both the role of religious practices and social psychological factors in the conversion process. This study also brings to light the hostilities to conversion in a multi-religious context.