Belief Without Borders: Inside the Minds of the Spiritual But Not Religious

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Product Details

Oxford University Press, USA
Publish Date
6.45 X 9.48 X 1.16 inches | 1.42 pounds

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About the Author

Linda Mercadante is the B. Robert Straker Professor of Historical Theology at The Methodist Theological School in Ohio and is an ordained minister in the Presbyterian Church (USA).


"Rich with detail and nuance...[Mercadante] is a naturally gifted writer."--Nova Religio

"Linda Mercadante has clearly touched a cultural nerve Belief without Borders is rich with detail and nuance. It is full of voices-Mercadante lets her interviewees speak for themselves, in their own terms-and is held together by her own voice, which is clear, concrete, and candid. And respectful: she takes her conversation partners seriously enough to challenge them. "--Nova Religio

"For those who think that being 'spiritual but not religious' is intellectually vague, it is time to think again. In Belief without Borders, Linda Mercadante explores the beliefs of the religiously unaffiliated regarding God, sin, community, the afterlife, and ethics and finds people living 'between' the worlds of secularism and traditional faith. By taking the new spiritual impulse seriously as theology, she affirms the power of spiritual experience as a force remaking the patterns of contemporary faith." --Diana Butler Bass, author of Christianity After Religion: The End of Church and the Birth of a New Spiritual Awakening

"In the tradition of Robert Bellah's Habits of the Heart, Mercadante here offers us a brilliant narrative introduction to the theology and belief systems of the 'Spiritual but not Religious' among us. Highly accessible and rife with insightful commentary, Belief without Borders is far and away the richest study I have seen to date of the SBNR and is destined to become a classic in the field." --Phyllis Tickle, author of The Great Emergence: How Christianity Is Changing and Why

"Belief without Borders breaks new ground by describing the growing 'spiritual but not religious' population in the United States. Drawing on in-depth interviews, Mercadante finds that the 'spiritual but not religious' are critical of both organized religion and the secular world. The book offers an analysis of the role of belief in contemporary America. It is a welcome and much needed contribution." --John C. Green, Professor, Political Science, University of Akron

"This informative, engaging, and important book shatters the myth that those who describe themselves as 'spiritual but not religious' (SBNR) are self-absorbed theological illiterates self-indulgently 'pic 'n mixing' their way to objectively superficial spiritual self-satisfaction." --Journal of Contemporary Religion