I’m teaching “Sacraments of Initiation” to undergrads this fall and request your suggestions for readings around intentional commitment to liturgical practice, as well as intentional rejection of organized religion. I want the students to think hard about how some people find worship attendance to be meaningful, related to their daily life, a constitutive part of their value system, and the like, and also how some people who reject organized religion find meaning and values and a fulfilling life.
I’m interested in blog posts or journal articles or book chapters, and the length can vary from a few pages to perhaps 25-30 pages. I want some readings to be very first-person autobigraphical, but I’m also interested in intellectual studies of this issue, which can be articles or posts but also scholarly analysis with graphs and charts etc.
Here’s an example of an article I think students would find interesting “True Nonbeliever” from the Yale Alumni magazine. It tells of a young man trained at a theological school in Chicago who served as a “humanist chaplain” at Harvard for several years before moving to New Haven in 2014 to build a similarly secular community there.
The Little Atheist Book of Spirituality is also interesting and well-written and I’m considering some chapters from it.
What I’m really looking for, and have not found yet, are credible accounts of people with a liturgical spirituality – people who have decided for Christianity, or have always been a part of it, who write about how their regular participation in the liturgy is essential to their well-lived life.
Thanks in advance for your suggestions!