Title

The Ritual of Communal Prayer: Value, Meaning and Performance

Presenter Information

Mohammad S. Nazzal
Gayle Mersch

Start Time

24-10-2008 10:50 AM

End Time

24-10-2008 11:20 AM

Abstract

Occupation is everything people do to occupy themselves, including self-care activities, work, leisure and play. This study explored the ritual of communal prayer as a meaningful spiritual occupation. The purpose of the study is to explore the meaning and value of prayer to ordinary individuals as well as its performance. This study attempted to answer the following questions: 1) What is the meaning and value of prayer? 2) What performance skills are required to optimally participate and perform the prayer as an activity? 3) What contextual factors are inherent to the participation in prayer? and 4) What performance patterns are related to the performance of prayer? A qualitative ethnographic methodology was utilized. The researcher conducted face to face interviews and 30 minutes participant observations while participants perform their prayer rituals. The researcher recruited 3 able-bodied adult participants for a total of 9 participants from the three religious groups, Catholic, Jewish and Muslim, using a convenient sampling method. Results of the study revealed the significant meaning and value of the occupation of prayer to these participants who identify themselves with a religious role in their lives. Participant-observation data was significant in revealing the common performance skills and patterns used in prayer rituals for the three faiths. Environment and contextual factors inherent to maximum engagement in the occupation of the prayer were also discussed. The occupation of prayer was then analyzed according to the following themes: meaning, physical performance, cognitive performance, community participation, temporality and spiritual context. The study results propose the potential of the occupation of communal prayer and prayer in general as a meaningful occupation when used with occupational therapy clients who identify themselves with previous religious roles. This study is an example of how the study of occupation from an occupational science perspective can inform the practice of occupational therapy.

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Oct 24th, 10:50 AM Oct 24th, 11:20 AM

The Ritual of Communal Prayer: Value, Meaning and Performance

Occupation is everything people do to occupy themselves, including self-care activities, work, leisure and play. This study explored the ritual of communal prayer as a meaningful spiritual occupation. The purpose of the study is to explore the meaning and value of prayer to ordinary individuals as well as its performance. This study attempted to answer the following questions: 1) What is the meaning and value of prayer? 2) What performance skills are required to optimally participate and perform the prayer as an activity? 3) What contextual factors are inherent to the participation in prayer? and 4) What performance patterns are related to the performance of prayer? A qualitative ethnographic methodology was utilized. The researcher conducted face to face interviews and 30 minutes participant observations while participants perform their prayer rituals. The researcher recruited 3 able-bodied adult participants for a total of 9 participants from the three religious groups, Catholic, Jewish and Muslim, using a convenient sampling method. Results of the study revealed the significant meaning and value of the occupation of prayer to these participants who identify themselves with a religious role in their lives. Participant-observation data was significant in revealing the common performance skills and patterns used in prayer rituals for the three faiths. Environment and contextual factors inherent to maximum engagement in the occupation of the prayer were also discussed. The occupation of prayer was then analyzed according to the following themes: meaning, physical performance, cognitive performance, community participation, temporality and spiritual context. The study results propose the potential of the occupation of communal prayer and prayer in general as a meaningful occupation when used with occupational therapy clients who identify themselves with previous religious roles. This study is an example of how the study of occupation from an occupational science perspective can inform the practice of occupational therapy.