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Is the spirit 'missing' in the discourse of management, spirituality and religion?

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Shoaib Ul Haq


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The community of MSR (Management, Spirituality and Religion) can be conceptualized as a ‘discourse community’ since it is a group bound by similar social practices and a common focus on the relationship between spirituality/religion and contemporary organizations. This community is guided by certain normative assumptions including humans as physical creatures endowed only with reason & sense-perception, this-worldly focus and neglect of other-worldly concerns, rationality as the dominant mode of knowing, independence of spirituality from religion, lack of engagement with transcendental issues and an instrumental use of spirituality in organizations. It seems that MSR is locked in these modernist epistemic commitments and if it wants to grow as a discipline, it would need to critically evaluate these commitments and rework its discourses. Here, Sufism or Islamic mysticism can help by pointing out the nature and characteristics of the human spirit and the ways it can be transformed. In this way, Sufism provides a radical point of departure in order to save the MSR community from the blind alley in which it is currently trapped.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Ul-Haq S

Editor(s): Smith, Jaye Goosby

Publication type: Book Chapter

Publication status: Published

Book Title: Blessed are Those Who Ask the Questions: What Should we be Asking About Management, Leadership, Spirituality, and Religion in Organizations?

Year: 2021

Print publication date: 12/03/2021

Online publication date: 30/03/2021

Acceptance date: 08/09/2020

Publisher: Information Age Publishing


Library holdings: Search Newcastle University Library for this item

ISBN: 9781648024306