“Spiritual but not religious: The end of belief”

George Adams, the author of the forthcoming Thinking About Religion in the 21st Century, writes for iai.tv on the emergent spiritualities of the 21st century and beyond:

We are suggesting that what’s left is precisely that intuitive, experiential, difficult-to-articulate, but nonetheless solidly real and epistemologically convincing, intuitive sense of Spirit.

More specifically, we argue that we are in the early stage of a transition from a mode of spirituality based on cognitive assent to propositional beliefs to a spirituality rooted in a sense or experience of Spirit. Historically speaking, in the Western religious traditions, and particularly in Christianity, being religious has been understood as primarily a matter of orthodoxy, which literally means correct belief, as in the sense of assenting to the truth of certain propositions. We are suggesting that the religion of the 21st century will transition away from a religion of propositional belief to a religion of experience. In a sense, religion will become more empirically grounded and less rooted in cognitive assent to unprovable propositions.