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    A conceptual matrix for mapping encounter experiences

    Drinkwater, Kenneth ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-4015-0578, Dagnall, Neil ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-0657-7604 and Houran, James (2021) A conceptual matrix for mapping encounter experiences. Academia Letters. p. 3955. ISSN 2771-9359

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    Individuals in the general population are known to report anomalous experiences involving encounters with seemingly autonomous paranormal ‘entities.’ These accounts resemble positive symptomatology in psychosis, but research suggests that these encounter experiences are consistent with a syndrome-type model that is rooted in known attentional, perceptual, and attributional processes (Laythe et al., 2021). We propose that the phenomenology of these experiences and associated threat indexes can be mapped to a simple two (Setting: spontaneous— ritualized) by two (Proximity: close—distant) dimensional matrix, which is partly mediated by transliminality, i.e., the degree of somatic-sensitivity to internalized and externalized stimuli. Our recommended ‘Encounter Matrix’ accordingly contextualizes experients’ cognitive interpretations, emotional reactions, and general meaning-making of these occurrences for both research and clinical applications.

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