studies spiritual transformation phenomena
Delaney, UNM psychology professor, received a two-year, $150,000
research grant from the Metanexus Institute on Religion and
Science for his studies on Antecedents of Transformation:
is one of 24 recipients of the first research grants awarded
for scientific studies on the phenomena of spiritual transformation
through the Metanexus Institutes ground-breaking Spiritual
Transformation Scientific Research Program. The distinguished
researchers, from many disciplines at leading educational institutions
in the United States and other countries, will be conducting
the first multidisciplinary scientific investigations of this
was made by Dr. Solomon Katz, president of the Philadelphia,
Pa., based Metanexus Institute and principal investigator for
the Spiritual Transformation Scientific Research Program.
study will concentrate on the oft-neglected topic of spiritual
well-being. It will be the first prospective study of
dramatic, lasting quantum changes in individuals
lives, as well as an investigation of gradual spiritual change.
of spiritual transformation will be investigated during the
college years, a critical formative period during which faith
is often shaken or solidified, and lifetime patterns of character
and spiritual disciplines are set, Delaney said. We
argue that spiritual transformation may be conceptualized as
a maturing of spiritual character in terms of faith, hope and
Transformation Scientific Research Program seeks to understand
the phenomena of spiritual transformation and how it occurs,
both through secular and religious experiences. The innovative
multi-million dollar Spiritual Transformation Scientific Research
Program was launched in the fall of 2001 with the support of
the John Templeton Foundation.
history and in our own time, humans have had profound experiences
with a spiritual dimension of reality. Individuals testify
that their lives are no longer the same in the aftermath of
these experiences, that they have been transformed.
Independent observers often bear witness to these changes as
well. Through these research projects on spiritual transformation,
scientists and scholars hope to better understand these dramatic
changes in peoples beliefs and behaviors, says Delaney.
were chosen from a pool of 470 applicants from 22 nations representing
many top research institutions internationally. The recipients
were selected from among 60 finalists.
these studies, we have an opportunity to create a new field
of inquiry, freed from the prejudices of the past, to examine
diverse religious and spiritual phenomena with scientific rigor,
said Katz. It is a very exciting program, with the potential
for many new insights and practical applications.
information is available on-line at www.spiritualtransformationresearch.org.