MA/Ph.D. Student, Religious Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara
I am interested in themes of mysticism and esotericism, specifically pertaining to New Religious Movements. I will be focusing my research on founders of NRMs and how their reported extraordinary experiences/abilities contribute to the justification of their authority. I am also interested in approaching these topics from a cognitive perspective, with special focus on how extraordinary experiences are deemed religious, credible, and valid.