Publication details [#868]

Martin, Paul C. 2013. The exploratory and reflective domain of the metaphor in the comparison of religions. Zygon - Journal of Religion and Science 48 (4) : 936–965. 30 pp.
Publication type
Article in journal
Publication language


Religious schemata have been studies from various viewpoints and using different methodologies. For instance, Jonathan Smith has proposed a model of comparison based on metaphor. Metaphor is traditionally understood to connote similarity between two or more things, as based on a linguistic or pragmatic assessment. Within Lakoff and Johnson's cognitive model of “conceptual metaphor”, however, metaphor is viewed as being pervasive not only in language, but also in thought and action. According to Lakoff and Johnson, metaphor basically structures our conceptual operations and views of the world through partially mapping knowledge across ontological domains, generally from the concrete to the abstract. This study argues that a comparable mechanism can be applied to the comparison of religious schemata, as based on the postulated relationship between the domains of physical and abstract, human and divine, and as realised through expressions of journey and reflection.