Xenophilia, seen as a type of romanticism, is proposed as an explanation for the tendency
within transpersonal psychology to privilege so-called exotic religious and spiritual traditions,
as opposed to the xenophobic tendency within mainstream Western psychology of
religion and spirituality to privilege the Judeo-Christian tradition. Claims made in a recent
article published in a major psychology journal that Buddhism does not rest on supernatural
faith and is the most psychological spiritual tradition are challenged as examples of this type
of romanticism. Demographic trends showing conversion rates to Buddhism in the US
are contrasted with conversion rates to Christianity in South Korea, also evidencing this
tendency to embrace religious and spiritual traditions in accord with xenophilia.
Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.
Friedman, H. (2009). Freidman, H. (2009). Xenophilia as a cultural trap: Bridging the gap between transpersonal psychology and religious/spiritual traditions. International Journal of Transpersonal Studies, 28(1), 107–111.. International Journal of Transpersonal Studies, 28 (1). http://dx.doi.org/10.24972/ijts.2009.28.1.107