Organization Management Journal


The author reflects on his experience and discusses problems in teaching a course about spirituality and religion in the workplace. Sometimes indoctrination happens when professors treat their own spiritual ideology as the truth, or they require students to engage in religious practices in class. Indoctrination is teaching people “to accept a system of thought uncritically.” The management education literature has little to say about indoctrination. Indoctrination can be avoided by (1) ensuring informed consent, (2) designing learning activities for students from all spiritual perspectives, (3) teaching about the topic (instead of taking the “how to” approach), (4) presenting diverse spiritual perspectives, (5) encouraging respect for others’ spirituality and religion in discussion, and (6) presenting one’s own set of beliefs as one among many. It is hoped that these guidelines can prevent indoctrination not only in courses in spirituality and religion in the workplace, but also in other management courses.