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Schism (from the Greek 'to split') refers to a gaggle that breaks clear of one other, often higher company and types a brand new service provider. notwithstanding the time period is sometimes restricted to non secular schisms, it may be prolonged to other forms of breakaway teams. simply because schisms emerge out of controversies, the time period has unfavorable connotations. although they're an immense element of many analyses, schisms ordinarily haven't been subjected to systematic research. This quantity presents the 1st book-length learn of non secular schisms as a common phenomenon. a few chapters learn particular case reviews whereas others offer surveys of the heritage of schisms inside better spiritual traditions, equivalent to Islam and Buddhism. different chapters are extra theoretically targeted. Examples are drawn from a large choice of alternative traditions and geographical components, from early Mediterranean Christianity to trendy eastern New Religions, and from the Jehovah's Witnesses to Neo-Pagans.

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