Transforming Realities—Making the Improbable Possible: Reclamation of Sacredness as a Source of Generative Capacities

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Understanding the nature and source of generative capacities for radical change has been an enduring concern for researchers of organizations and social movements. However, the role of spirituality as a resource in social movements is an undertheorized area. Based on the field study of a successful, long-term social movement in India and drawing on the emerging discourse on spirituality in organizational literature, the author describes how in a community reclamation of the sacred came to be a source of generative capacities for transformation. This article describes a dynamic model of change that begins with recognition of the sacred and positive action that has the potential to spiral to escalating levels of positive change. The article also describes how the sacred in this community is manifested as a socioecological, relational ethic. The author concludes by discussing the implications of this framework for social movements and organizational change theories.

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© 2011 by SAGE Publications. Publisher's version of record: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1056492610390029

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Journal of Management Inquiry