Cognitive Semiotics and On-Line Reading of Religious Texts

Evola, Vito (2005) Cognitive Semiotics and On-Line Reading of Religious Texts. [Journal (On-line/Unpaginated)]

This is the latest version of this eprint.

Full text available as:



In this essay a hermeneutic model of the higher level understanding during on-line ritual reading by devotees of their respective sacred literatures is proposed, using the instruments provided by cognitive sciences. The way a devotee reads a sacred text differs from the way he or she would read a common piece of literature or how a lay person might read the same sacred text. After providing an overview of metaphor, anthropomorphism, and the “religious brain”, it is suggested how devotee-readers might make sense of a religious text and why it should be so important for their own personal everyday life. Universals are implicated in this genre of literature and the way it is interpreted.

Item Type:Journal (On-line/Unpaginated)
Additional Information:ISSN 1470-5648
Keywords:literary universals, religious literature, cognitive linguistics, metaphor, semiotics, limbic system, attention, memory, higher level thinking, consciousness, empathy, rituals, anthropomorphism, reading, authority, brain imaging
Subjects:Linguistics > Semantics
ID Code:4863
Deposited By: Evola, Dr. Vito
Deposited On:29 Apr 2006
Last Modified:11 Mar 2011 08:56

Available Versions of this Item

References in Article

Select the SEEK icon to attempt to find the referenced article. If it does not appear to be in cogprints you will be forwarded to the paracite service. Poorly formated references will probably not work.

Aggleton, J.P. and Mishkin, M. (1986). “The amygdala: sensory gateway to the emotions”, in Emotion: Theory, Research and Experience, edited by R. Plutchik and H. Kellerman, Vol 3, (Academic Press, New York).

Auerbach, Erich (1953). Mimesis: The Representation of Reality in Western Literature. Princeton University Press.

Barrett, Justin L. (1999). “Theological correctness: Cognitive constraint and the study of religion.” Method & Theory in the Study of Religion 11: 325-339.

Bausani, Alessandro (1980). L’Islam. Milan: Garzanti.

Boyer, Pascal (2001). Religion Explained: The Evolutionary Origins of Religious Thought. New York: Basic Books.

Brandt, Per Aage and Line Brandt (2002). “Making Sense of a Blend” in Apparatur: Tidsskrift for litteratur og kulturr 4:2. August, 2002. Odense, Denmark.

Damasio, Antonio R (1994). Descartes' Error: Emotion, Reason, and the Human Brain. New York: G. P. Putnam.

D'Aquili, Euguene and Andrew B. Newberg (1999). The Mystical Mind: Probing the Biology of Religious Experience. Theology and the Sciences. Minneapolis: Fortress Press.

Eco, Umberto (1979). Lector in Fabula: La cooperazione interpretativa nei testi narrativi. Milan: Bompiani.

Fauconnier, Gilles and Mark Turner (2002). The Way We Think. New York: Basic Books.

Forman, Robert K. C. (1999). Mysticism, Mind, Consciousness. New York: State University of New York Press.

Gibbs, Raymond. (1994). The Poetics of Mind: Figurative Thought, Language and Understanding. Cambridge, Eng.: Cambridge University Press.

Hogan, Patrick (1997). “Literary Universals”. Poetics Today, 18:2 (Summer), 223-249.

Katz, Albert N., Cristina Cacciari, Raymond W. Gibbs, Jr., Mark Turner (1998). Figurative Language and Thought. Counterpoints: Cognition, Memory, & Language. New York: Oxford University Press.

Kövecses, Zóltan (2002). Metaphor: A Practical Introduction. New York: Oxford University Press.

Lakoff, George and Mark Johnson (1980). Metaphors We Live By. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press.

Miall, David S. (1995). “Anticipation and feeling in literary response: A neuropsychological perspective”. Poetics 23(4): pp. 275-298.

Mithen, Steven J. (1996). The Prehistory of the Mind: The Cognitive Origins of Art, Religion and Science. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Newberg, Andrew, Eugene D'Aquili e Vince Rause (2001). Why God Won't Go Away: Brain Science and the Biology of Belief. New York: Ballentine Books.

Parrinder, Geoffrey (1964). Le Upanishad, la Gita e la Bibbia. Rome: Ubaldini Editore.

Sweetser, Eve (1991). From Etymology to Pragmatics: Metaphorical and Cultural Aspects of Semantic Structure. Cambridge University Press.

Tsur, Reuven (2003). On The Shore of Nothingness: Space, Rhythm, and Semantic Structure in Religious Poetry and its Mystic-Secular Counterpart--A Study in Cognitive Poetics. Exeter: Imprint Academic.

Turner, Mark (1996). The literary mind: The origins of thought and language. New York: Oxford University Press.

Zaehner, R.C. (1960). Hindu and Muslim Mysticism. Oneworld Publications, Reprint edition (1995).


Repository Staff Only: item control page