Spirituality – Faith Beyond Belief

Faith Beyond Belief: Stories of Good People Who Left Their Church BehindFaith Beyond Belief
By Margaret Placentra Johnston
Publisher: Quest Books
ISBN: 978-0835609050
Pages: 360
Genre: Spirituality – spiritual development
Formats Available For Review: Print

From the author:
I wrote Faith Beyond Belief to soften the righteousness that divides religious believers and nonbelievers into warring camps. Analysis of twelve experts in what I have called spiritual development theory shows that one must move beyond literal religious belief to become spiritually mature. One must go through a stage of critical distance that may cause the person to reason himself out of religious belief. However, on the other side of that questioning stage lies something quite miraculous – post-critical faith. Not based on beliefs, post-critical faith leans a person toward a more unitive worldview where the differences among us are diminished in importance over the humanity we share.

Because the twelve theorists have written in cryptic language, I have used ten true stories from real life people to illustrate what movement “beyond belief” and toward post-critical faith might play out in actual human lives.

Despite being commonly acknowledged by theologians, post-critical faith is rarely mentioned from the pulpit, and never acknowledged in conventional society. But without an understanding of this trajectory, traditional literal religious belief stands to become a laughing stock in our largely post-modern world.

Faith Beyond Belief: Stories of Good People Who Left Their Church Behind brings the stages alive for the lay reader, and correlates the work of twelve spiritual development theorists in the plainest, boldest language possible.

Spiritual development – explained as growth to a point where each individual religion is recognized as a localized expression of the common human need to connect to something greater than oneself – NOT as a final answer to our deepest existential questions – is an idea whose time has come. Faith Beyond Belief explains how and why we must move in that direction – must bring this concept down to the level where conventional society will finally recognize its truth, and begin encouraging spiritual growth instead of holding people back in literalism and divisiveness.

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