Belief Without Borders
Author: Linda A. Mercadante
Publisher: Oxford University Press
A dramatic rise in ''nones''—individuals without religious affiliation—has taken place in less than two decades. Many of these people are seekers who self-identify as ''spiritual but not religious (SBNR).'' In Belief without Borders, theologian Linda Mercadante, once an SBNR herself, sets out to find them and let them speak for themselves.
Nearly 40% of all Americans have no connection with organized religion. Yet many of these people, even though they might never step inside a house of worship, live profoundly spiritual lives. But what is the nature and value of unchurched spirituality in America? Is it a recent phenomenon, a New Age fad that will soon fade, or a long-standing and essential aspect of the American experience? In Spiritual But Not Religious, Robert Fuller offers fascinating answers to these questions. He shows that alternative spiritual practices have a long and rich history in America, dating back to the colonial period, when church membership rarely exceeded 17% and interest in astrology, numerology, magic, and witchcraft ran high. Fuller traces such unchurched traditions into the mid-nineteenth century, when Americans responded enthusiastically to new philosophies such as Swedenborgianism, Transcendentalism, and mesmerism, right up to the current interest in meditation, channeling, divination, and a host of other unconventional spiritual practices. Throughout, Fuller argues that far from the flighty and narcissistic dilettantes they are often made out to be, unchurched spiritual seekers embrace a mature and dynamic set of basic beliefs. They focus on inner sources of spirituality and on this world rather than the afterlife; they believe in the accessibility of God and in the mind's untapped powers; they see a fundamental unity between science and religion and an equality between genders and races; and they are more willing to test their beliefs and change them when they prove untenable. Timely, sweeping in its scope, and informed by a clear historical understanding, Spiritual But Not Religious offers fresh perspective on the growing numbers of Americans who find their spirituality outside the church.
Author: Rachelle Mee-Chapman
Publisher: Chalice Press
When it comes to religion, "choose one" is no longer your only option. You can be spiritual-but-not-religious or not particularly religious at all-yet still have a robust system of beliefs and values that guides you. Creating your own set of eclectic spiritual practices is not a sign that you are a faith-less person but rather a faith-ful person responding with honesty to an increasingly expanding world. If faithfully attending church isn't helping you live out your values in everyday ways, becoming relig-ish may be the answer! Rachelle Mee-Chapman's new book Relig-ish will help you: Create a set of spiritual practices that fit into your daily life and honor the things you value most. Develop right-fit spiritual practices for yourself and your family outside of going to church. Shake off harmful religious messages and embrace truths that won't damage yourself or your soul. Build bridges towards your religious family members by identifying the common values that are the bedrock beneath your beliefs. Discover that your soul is not at risk and you are not lost in your wondering, wandering post-church world.
The Blackwell Guide to Theology of Popular Culture outlines various general theories of popular culture, identifies theologians and theological concepts that are conducive to analyzing popular culture, and explores religious themes that are asserting themselves through popular movies, novels, music, television shows and advertising. A timely examination and contribution to the rapidly expanding field of theology and popular culture Locates the theological analysis of culture alongside political, sociological, economic, aesthetic and psychological analyses Surveys the work of religious and theological scholars who have turned their attention to popular culture Considers classic Christian thinkers who have wrestled with culture, such as St. Paul, Tertullian, Augustine, Schleiermacher, Tillich, and Ricoeur Proposes a method for analysing culture to discern its religious content Identifies religious themes in popular culture Uses illustrations, ranging from the fiction of Nick Hornby to Six Feet Under An appendix provides lists of films, novels, television series, consumer products, architectural works, cultural events, and corporate icons that lend themselves to theological analysis.
A shocking snapshot of the most current impulses in American religion. Rodney Stark reports the surprising findings of the 2007 Baylor Surveys of Religion, a follow up to the 2005 survey revealing most Americans believe in God or a higher power. This new volume highlights even more hot-button issues of religious life in our country. A must-read for anyone interested in Americans' religious beliefs and practices.
Furnham and Xenikou provide an overview of the classic and contemporary theories debated within organizational culture, grounding debates within the context of group dynamics. This psychological focus ties in with OB modules, allowing students to develop their understanding of the psychological processes underpinning organizational life.
Life as Politics
Author: Asef Bayat
Publisher: Stanford University Press
Prior to 2011, popular imagination perceived the Muslim Middle East as unchanging and unchangeable, frozen in its own traditions and history. In Life as Politics, Asef Bayat argues that such presumptions fail to recognize the routine, yet important, ways in which ordinary people make meaningful change through everyday actions. First published just months before the Arab Spring swept across the region, this timely and prophetic book sheds light on the ongoing acts of protest, practice, and direct daily action. The second edition includes three new chapters on the Arab Spring and Iran's Green Movement and is fully updated to reflect recent events. At heart, the book remains a study of agency in times of constraint. In addition to ongoing protests, millions of people across the Middle East are effecting transformation through the discovery and creation of new social spaces within which to make their claims heard. This eye-opening book makes an important contribution to global debates over the meaning of social movements and the dynamics of social change.
Victims and Sinners
Author: Linda A. Mercadante
Publisher: Westminster John Knox Press
This book is for pastoral counselors, clergy, laypers-ons, and recovery group members wanting to reass-ess addiction recovery from a theological perspec-tive. It offers a wake-up call to the church to estab-lish recovery groups.
Theology of religions has defaulted in the last two decades to an epicyclic inclusivism which seeks to undermine pluralism with claims that it is covertly triumphalistic and that it mirrors the logic of exclusivism. With the exception of pioneers in the field such as John Hick and Paul Knitter, most major figures in this theological field have retreated from pluralism and promote versions of particularism and inclusivism. Pluralism: The Future of Religion argues for an apophatic pluralism that is motivated by the insight that it is impossible to secure universal assent for changeable bodies of religious teachings. This insight implies the non-finality and consequent 'departicularization' of all religious teachings and their inclusivistic defenses. These conclusions point us inevitably toward pluralism and lead us out of the inclusivistic impasse of contemporary theology in religions.
Choosing Our Religion
Author: Elizabeth Drescher
Publisher: Oxford University Press
To the dismay of religious leaders, study after study has shown a steady decline in affiliation and identification with traditional religions in America. By 2014, more than twenty percent of adults identified as unaffiliated--up more than seven percent just since 2007. Even more startling, more than thirty percent of those under the age of thirty now identify as "Nones"--answering "none" when queried about their religious affiliation. Is America losing its religion? Or, as more and more Americans choose different spiritual paths, are they changing what it means to be religious in the United States today? In Choosing Our Religion, Elizabeth Drescher explores the diverse, complex spiritual lives of Nones across generations and across categories of self-identification such as "Spiritual-But-Not-Religious," "Atheist," "Agnostic," "Humanist," "just Spiritual," and more. Drawing on more than one hundred interviews conducted across the United States, Drescher opens a window into the lives of a broad cross-section of Nones, diverse with respect to age, gender, race, sexual orientation, and prior religious background. She allows Nones to speak eloquently for themselves, illuminating the processes by which they became None, the sources of information and inspiration that enrich their spiritual lives, the practices they find spiritually meaningful, how prayer functions in spiritual lives not centered on doctrinal belief, how morals and values are shaped outside of institutional religions, and how Nones approach the spiritual development of their own children. These compelling stories are deeply revealing about how religion is changing in America--both for Nones and for the religiously affiliated family, friends, and neighbors with whom their lives remain intertwined.
Author: Gary Laderman
Widely praised in hardcover as a fascinating and important addition to religious and cultural studies, Sacred Matters reveals the remarkable ways that religious practices permeate American cultural life.In a country where references to God are as normal as proclaiming love of country, support for the military, or security for the nation's children, religion scholar Gary Laderman casts his eye over our deeply hidden spiritual landscape, questioning whether our conventional views even begin to capture the rich and strange diversity of religious life in America. A compelling read, Sacred Matters shows that genuinely religious practices and experiences can be found in the unlikeliest of places-in science laboratories and movie theaters, at the Super Bowl and Star Trek conventions, and in Americans' obsession with prescription drugs and pornography. When devoted fans make a pilgrimage to Graceland because of their love for Elvis, Laderman argues, their behavior doesn't just seem religious, it is religious-enacting a well-known ritual pattern toward saints in the history of Christianity. In a dramatic reframing of what is holy and secular, Sacred Matters makes a powerful and illuminating case that religion is everywhere-and that we have barely begun to reckon with its hold on our cultural life.
The Secular Northwest
Author: Tina Block
Publisher: UBC Press
The image of a rough frontier – where working men were tempted away from church on Sundays by more profane concerns – was perpetuated by postwar religious leaders troubled by the decline in church involvement. Tina Block debunks the myth of a godless frontier, revealing a Pacific Northwest that rejected organized religion – but not necessarily God. Not just working men but also women, families, and middle-class communities helped to shape the region’s secular identity. Drawing on oral histories, census data, newspapers, and archival sources, Block launches this exploration of Northwest secularity and the independent spirit of those who chose to live irreligiously.
Sponsored by the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, a division of the American Psychological Association. Reveals how examining climate and culture together can advance understanding of the behavior of individuals within organizations, as well as overall organizational performance in such diverse areas as financial planning, marketing, and human resource development.
The chapters of this book are nothing but mirrors for seeing your ''self'' from different angles. And though the journey we are about to embark on is an inner one, it will draw upon every aspect of your life. The only requirement asked of you is the willingness to honestly look at yourself in the most natural, intuitive manner. Remember, if we are seeking the root of ''self,'' what we are actually seeking is you. As you read through these pages, you will find that you know much more than you thought you did about some very deep subjects. The fact is, you already know how to find yourself; you have just gotten distracted and disoriented. Once refocused, you will realize that you not only have the ability to find yourself, you have the ability to free yourself. Whether you choose to do so or not is entirely up to you. But upon completion of your journey through these chapters, there will be no more confusion, no more lack of empowerment, and no more blaming others. You will know exactly what must be done. And should you choose to devote yourself to the ongoing journey of self-realization, you will develop a tremendous sense of respect for who you really are. It is only then that you will come to appreciate the full depth of meaning in the advice: ''This above all: to thine own self be true.'' ---- Introduction
New Worshiping Communities
Author: Vera White, Charles Wiley
Publisher: Westminster John Knox Press
What is the church to make of the many new expressions of worship springing up across the nation and the world? A gathering of academic theologians, New Worshiping Community practitioners, and leaders from within Presbyterian councils met at Pittsburgh Theological Seminary to start the conversation. New Worshiping Communities documents those discussions and provides theological and biblical foundations to the 1001 New Worshiping Communities movement in the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.). The participants in this conversation have sought to put flesh on the bones of what a “New Worshiping Community” is, by defining it as: New Seeking to make and form new disciples of Jesus Christ Taking on varied forms of church for our changing culture Worshiping Gathered by the Spirit to meet Jesus Christ in Word and sacrament Sent by the Spirit to join God’s mission for the transformation of the world Community Practicing mutual care and accountability Developing sustainability in leadership and finances