A Christian plane of immanence?: Contrapuntal reflections on Deleuze and Pentecostal spirituality

Bruno Reinhardt


In this article I revisit current debates on immanence and transcendence in the anthropology of Christianity and promote an encounter between the philosophy of Gilles Deleuze and my fieldwork experience among committed Pentecostals in Ghana. My argument seeks mutual-clarification and oscillates contrapuntally between these two discursive traditions through moments of harmonization and dissonance. The philosophy of radical immanence and Pentecostal spirituality are presented as two lines of flight from the hegemonic "immanent frame" of secular modernity, a shared marginality that facilitates my engagement with Deleuzian notions, such as virtuality, modes, intensity, flow, desire, and refraction, in order to account for the heterogeneous ways whereby the Holy Spirit manifests itself amidst the creation. This attempt at reconciliation brings about evident frictions, and I conclude by revisiting some fundamental differences between Deleuze’s monistic pluralism and Pentecostals’ pluralistic monotheism. 



Pentecostalism, Ghana, Deleuze, anthropology of Christianity, immanence, transcendence

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.14318/hau5.1.019