Encyclopedia of Psychology and Religion

2014 Edition
| Editors: David A. Leeming

Emotional Intelligence

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-6086-2_836

Emotional intelligence is a relatively recent term that has significant implications for understanding religious experience and faith. Before defining emotional intelligence and explaining its relevance to religious faith, it is important to first set the stage by offering a brief definition of the term emotion and an overview of how it has been understood and used in philosophical and theological thought, as well as in the human sciences.

Defining Emotions

There is considerable debate among researchers, psychologists, and philosophers about what emotions are and how they differ from feelings, sentiments, and moods (see Frijda 2000). “Some researchers,” report Parrot and Spackman, “conceive of emotion in an undifferentiated manner, investigating the effects of overall arousal, excitement, agitation, or drive without any distinguishing among different types of emotional states. Others treat emotional states as varying along two or more continuous dimensions, such as arousal and...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Pastoral Care and CounselingSt. Meinrad School of TheologySt. MeinradUSA