“Living Between Two Different Worlds”: Experiences of Leaving a High‑Cost Religious Group
Peer reviewed, Journal article
MetadataVis full innførsel
OriginalversjonBjörkmark, M., Nynäs, P., Koskinen, C. (2021) “Living Between Two Different Worlds”: Experiences of Leaving a High‑Cost Religious Group. Journal of Religion and Health 10.1007/s10943-021-01397-1
The aim of this interdisciplinary study is to gain a comprehensive understanding of individuals’ subjective experiences after leaving a high-cost religious group and how these experiences have affected their lives. In-depth interviews were done with 18 participants who had left different religious communities in Finland. The interviews were analysed through a thematic analysis. The results show that religious disaffiliation is a life change that may affect an individual’s life in profound ways. Life after being a member of a high-cost group may involve experiences of fear, guilt, sorrow, pain, loss and even suffering on an existential level. These experiences can have serious implications for one’s well-being and health. However, life after religious disaffiliation also includes many positive aspects, such as experiences of joy, freedom, relief, gratitude and empowerment.