The International Network for the Study of Spirituality (INSS) is a unique international network for people interested in bringing the study of spirituality to life through research, scholarship, education and practice.
Photo: Gillian Hunt. 'Silent Promise', Sussex, UK
The International Network for the Study of Spirituality (INSS) aims to facilitate the critical exploration of spirituality within the theory and practice of a wide range of academic and applied disciplines. It seeks to offer a space, both physical and conceptual, where multi-disciplinary research and conversations in the field of spirituality studies may be drawn together to contribute both to a better understanding of spirituality in professional and everyday practices, and to the development of new theoretical frameworks.
Our mission is to contribute to research in, and the development of, a field of enquiry that makes a difference,
both now and in the future.
The International Network for the Study of Spirituality is a member of the UK Register of Charities where the strategic objectives of INSS are formally recorded in the following terms:
"For the benefit of the public throughout the United Kingdom and internationally, to facilitate increasing awareness, understanding, respect for and support of, people’s spirituality, both in professional contexts and the wider community, by promoting:
• the critical study of all aspects of spirituality;
• education and dissemination regarding these matters;
• the development of inclusive and respectful policies and professional practices."
The INSS logo was produced in 2009 by Carl Schofield, a designer in the print unit at the University of Hull, UK, during preparations for the first BASS (now INSS) conference. Several designs were considered but Executive Committee members were impressed not only by the simplicity of this image but because, like the nature of spirituality itself, it is open to interpretation. Turquoise (representative of the colour of water and its life-sustaining properties) now replaces the original red background in order to match the print cover of the Journal for the Study of Spirituality. The journal's cover was designed by Mark Lee, a Sheffield-based designer commissioned in 2010 by Equinox Publishing.
The logo has sometimes been referred to as the 'three floating commas'. Whether or not the designer had that idea in mind, it is an image well-suited to the work of INSS. The original use of a comma in Ancient Greece was to indicate the amount of breath that would be required for each segment of text when reading aloud. Breath is closely associated with spirit in many of the world's wisdom traditions and religions - and the number three is often also linked to spiritual mysteries. It represents, too, the three-pronged approach which INSS takes to the development of the study of spirituality in the contexts of
Research ~ Education ~ Practice