Who We Are
Our interdisciplinary work brings together professionals from the social sciences, activists, religious leaders and other civil society actors. Our common goal is to confront spiritual and religion-based violence affecting women, LGBTQI people, people of color, many marginalized groups who live within specific hostile environments of Christian fundamentalism and all of us who live more broadly under the imperialist powers of white Christian Supremacy.
We seek to name the deep historical wounds in urgent need of healing, and nurture the seeds of change sewn in the voices of affected peoples throughout the world with steadfast conviction that it is possible to practice spirituality and religion with full dignity and respect for all people and beings, including the earth.
We want our communities to be free from all spiritual and physical violences, where we each live healthy, authentic, fulfilled lives together and where power relations are grounded in inherent equality and respect for human dignity.
We support groups, communities, and individuals to decode and integrate knowledge of the ways religion-based violence operates in homes, churches, societies and internally.
We build awareness and strengthen resilience strategies toward healing through accompaniment, educational tools, and organizing collective spaces for learning, emotional support, political collaboration, and social change.
What We Do
Through organizing meetings, dialogue circles and professional conferences, we facilitate a space for conversations on religion-based violence that are sensitive, well-informed, and urgently needed to inspire collaboration and cross-pollination across disciplines and geography.
Work with Research Teams
We work with professionals who are interested in critically exploring the phenomenon of spiritual and religious violences and their scientific and social impacts. Proposals for exploration in the fields of psychology, religion, health, social work, and trauma recovery are also welcome.
Training and Collaboration
We support professionals in the social sciences, health and wellness clinicians, public officials, activist groups, and religious and spiritual leaders with educational materials that deepen their working knowledge of the social, cultural, political, and historical circumstances that make up religion-based violence.
We support initiatives toward meaningful change in public policies, laws, and other institutions of social and political power toward our mission of achieving respect for the rights and dignity of all people, most specifically for those who have been historically marginalized.
We Partner with:
- Professionals from social sciences such as psychology, theology, law, social work and related fields, who share an interest in joining efforts to engage in interdisciplinary dialogue on issues of religion-based and spiritual violences.
- Survivors of the various forms of Spiritual Violence who can join us in enriching this work with our life experiences and find community spaces to continue healing together.
- Activists, organizational leadership, faith communities, professional associations and those who wish to become fully involved in the struggle against religion-based violence and advocating for forms of spirituality that affirm the full dignity of each human being.
What is Spiritual Violence?
Spiritual Violence occurs whenever religious morality or God is used to question or deny the sacred worth and inherent dignity of a person or group. It produces emotional, psychological, and spiritual wounds. Even when enacted unintentionally or by a close friend, partner, or family member, Spiritual Violence causes harm. It can happen in any social context by any person, group or institution, it is based on social and religious ideologies of Christian Supremacy that deny the authenticity and sacred worth of a person or group.
What is Religious Abuse?
Religious Abuse is a severe form of Spiritual Violence, exercised repeatedly and with bad intentions in explicitly religious spaces. It consists of forms of abuse or aggression towards a person or group, within relationships intentionally designed for sharing and/or growing in spirituality or other religious dimensions. Religious Abuse is another form of abuse of power, which implies, in general, the relationships between 1. a person or an organization with power granted by religious structures and 2. people or groups who are subordinate to them who identify as followers, disciples, apprentices, spiritual children, helpers, the faithful, the flock, etc.
What is Spiritual Trauma?
Spiritual Trauma occurs when a person is confronted with many events which constitute a violation or a loss of something they consider to be sacred. These are unpredictable and devastating events associated with negative spiritual or religious experiences. Spiritual Trauma is evidenced in the painful spiritual struggles to overcome it on a physical and emotional level. It produces sensations of distrust and anger, as well as feeling deeply betrayed, with the feeling that God and one’s own spiritual foundations were stolen.
What is Christian Supremacy?
Christian Supremacy is the parasitic relationship established when certain strains of Christianity are placed at the service of systems of power and domination. Institutions, governments, individuals, and other groups with power use Christian culture, concepts, and sacred texts to moralize and legitimize violent and oppressive measures.
Read more in our resource: What is Christian Supremacy?
What is Christian Hegemony?
Christian Hegemony describes the predominance of cultural Christianity over other religions due to a high concentration of people who practice the same religious tradition. It is the fruit of the colonization carried out by European powers and the process of Christianization of conquered peoples.
What is Religious Legalism?
Religious Legalism consists of sets of strict moral rules and laws, supposedly based on the Bible as the Word of God, that function as mechanisms of social control geared toward increasing the power of religious leaders while diminishing agency and freedom to question among believers.
What are Christian Fundamentalisms?
Christian Fundamentalisms are groups and movements within different Christian traditions who, in their determination to react against what they consider to be “antichristian secularization”, criticize all forms of reinterpretation and application of Christian values to today’s contexts. Christian fundamentalisms persecute liberal expressions of Christianity and progressive responses to modern realities, clinging to rigorous out-of-context, ritualistic forms of Christianity as a way to maintain what they consider to be the principles of traditional religion.