The article focuses on a more recent area of interest within the field of ethnomusicological research – sound. It reveals how sounds of various religious communities in the contemporary urban space reflect, construct or stimulate conflict of socio-political relations. It focuses on the city of Ljubljana and discusses the experiences of the inhabitants with three religious soundings: Christian church bell ringing, Muslim call to prayer (adhan) and the new religious community´s soundings of small bells, pots and pans. Through epistemological dimension of religious sounding it places them in relation to other sounds in urban soundscape. Bell ringing as the sound of dominant Roman Catholic community is being mostly challenged because of its acoustic and ideological domination in the city. Adhan is the sound of minority which has not been not materialized yet in the city soundscape, but has already evoked a broader debate among the wider public. Their reactions reveal religious, identity and xenophobia issues in the society. The Trans-Universal Zombie Church of the Blissful Ringing is using the musical instrument – the bell and the sounding of small bells, pots and pans in the form of progressive spirituality that provokes other religious traditions as well as socio-political situation in the country. All presented examples show how a particular religious sound functions on the level of the symbolic presentation of religious ideology and how the socio-political conflict is produced through religious sonority of the city.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.