MSR 2.0

Spirituality Plus Religion

Authored by: Eric B. Dent

The Routledge Companion to Management and Workplace Spirituality

Print publication date:  March  2019
Online publication date:  March  2019

Print ISBN: 9781138499188
eBook ISBN: 9781351015110
Adobe ISBN:


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Someone reading the Management, Spirituality, and Religion (MSR) literature for the first time could readily conclude that spirituality is a “good” thing and that religion is a “bad” thing. This supposed polarity, and other definitional “muddiness,” represent a lifecycle stage of academic literature that can be transcended by the introduction and explication of starting axioms by MSR scholars. For example, one’s “religion,” as the word is commonly defined, is simply the collection of beliefs that she accepts that cannot be derived from other established elements of her belief system. In other words, everyone chooses a starting set of axioms or assumptions, and that choice can be said to be that person’s religion. This chapter next analyzes some starting axioms of a number of common religions such as atheist objectivism, Christianity, secular humanism, Buddhism, and Hinduism. Although none of these sets of starting assumptions can be proven to be more fundamental than any other, these religions can be compared using criteria such as logical consistency and empirical adequacy. Finally, as a strategy for more effectively and rapidly advancing the field of MSR, this chapter proposes that the MSR community elevate the scholarship to MSR 2.0, a markedly “upgraded” literature that would include definitional clarity and explicit starting axioms. The MSR community should consider embracing the evidence-based management (EBM) approach which allows for a wide range of methodologies, provided that evidence is presented.

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