International Journal of Innovation and Business Strategy

Everybody, Everywhere, Everyday: Working Women and Spiritual Capitalism in Modern Bali

Written by Gina Zanolini Morrison, Karley Stasko, Yohana Sutiknyawati Kusuma Dewi.

Abstract: Whereas many western societies emphasize secularism and the absence of spirituality as central aspects of modernity, there are other modern cultures where spiritual beliefs and practices are integral parts of modern life. In order to examine the role of spirituality in modernity, researchers interviewed working women in several modern Southeast Asian cultures about their spiritual beliefs and practices. Working women were purposefully selected due to their active participation in modernity and their unique ways of knowing the world. This part of the larger study investigates the beliefs of women of Bali, who must reconcile working in a culture known for its openness about spiritualism with careers in a global marketplace influenced by a western bias that rejects spiritualism in the modern world. Seen through their eyes, Bali is a modern society where spirits coexist with the physical realm, where it takes constant mindfulness to achieve a healthy balance between the two worlds, and where spirituality is a universal phenomenon that needs no proof. Reflecting the emphasis on modernity, this article presents a contemporary perspective by acknowledging the modern position of beliefs, cultural forces, religion, and the women themselves. In addition to identifying how Balinese women utilize the island’s unique spirituality to maintain social mobility, this study underscores the practical effects of spirituality in modern business, health, and gender roles. In fact, it was found that women are major contributors to Bali’s spiritual capitalism and, thus, are primary motivators in the Balinese workforce.

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