Spiritual but not Religious

Program 141 • 29 mins


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An estimated one in five Americans is spiritually inclined but chooses not to affiliate with a specific organized religion. How does this “unchurched” population compare with people who prefer the setting of organized religion? How do spiritual but not religious people explore their yearnings to understand questions of life, death, and meaning? Dr. Fuller has long studied this population and discusses its worldview as well as that of some historical antecedents, including trascendentalist Ralph Waldo Emerson and William James, author of “Varieties of Religious Experience.”

Robert C. FullerThe spiritual but not religious, it’s definitely a journey. Wanting to experiment, and to try on, and to see how this works in my life. And for others, the persons who are more comfortable in a religious congregation, religion has become a home. Something is—they’ve found what works, or at least they sense that this works… I like to use the word “heuristic”, meaning I’m open to still discovering more truth. And that’s very different than feeling like ‘this book that I’m holding in my hand contains every truth that is important, or necessary, and it’s a closed book.’ And I think that is a huge difference.”

—Robert C. Fuller, Professor of religious studies, Bradley University
author of “Spiritual but not Religious”


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