Do you need help in reconciling the narrow demands of conformist religion with the free spirit maturing within you? Whether you or someone you know is struggling to overcome the psychological bondage of religious fundamentalism, I hope this book will prove helpful. I´m Terry Jonathan Moore, Ph.D., author of "My Subtle Shift from Baptist Fundamentalist to Unitarian Universalist: Sermons of a Newly Liberated Ministry " (Xlibris, 1998). These are sermons I wrote following my own victory over the religion of fear in which I was immersed as a Southern Baptist for some twenty-five years. I hope you will benefit from my decades of religious study and inner struggle by considering a saner, freer, healthier spiritual life such as I have found. The following free excerpt is my autobiographical sharing of spiritual growth from conformist religiosity to greater personal maturity of soul. I hope it helps you in your growth beyond the fundamentals to free and reasonable faith!
Here are the outlines for the chapters in the book: 1. MY SUBTLE SHIFT FROM BAPTIST FUNDAMENTALIST TO UNITARIAN UNIVERSALIST I. Baptists´ God A. Experience B. Theory II. Jesus´ God A. Experience B. Theory
2. A MOTHER LIKE MINE I. Her Hope II. Her Faith III. Her Love
3. ASPIRATIONS I. Saving My Breath to Avoid: A. Disillusionment B. Suffering C. Frustration II. Seeking Worthy Aspirations A. Sterling Character B. Loving Relationships
4. ANCIENT UNITARIANISM I. From Egypt A. A false start? B. Reborn hope II. From the Middle East A. Poly-, Heno-, & Monotheism B. Integrated religion & ethics III. Into Europe A. Our tested heritage B. Holding to mature faith
5. ANCIENT UNIVERSALISM I. From God´s chosen people, the Hebrews A. Universalist theory B. Elitist practice II. Through Paul´s mission to the Gentiles III. To Origen´s universalism
6. MAGNANIMITY (MATTHEW 5:21-48) I. But I tell you, Transcend the Ten Commandments (21-37). II. But I tell you, Surpass retaliation with self-restraint (38-42). III. But I tell you, Overpower hatred with love (43-47). IV. Be mature (48).
7. CHRISTIANITY´S INSPIRERS I. Jesus of Nazareth A. Respected, rural Palestinian B. Earthly concept of God´s future kingdom C. Concern for outcast Jews II. Saul/Paul of Tarsus A. Disdained, urban Hellenist B. Cosmic concept of God´s present salvation C. Concern for educated Gentiles
8. WILLIAM ELLERY CHANNING I. His transitional theology A. More liberal than his Calvinist predecessors B. Conservative compared to his successors II. His enduring spirit
9. ASSOCIATION I. For our world II. For our region III. For our neighbors
10. INGATHERING I. Gather in the congregation A. Tolerate low-level conflict B. Omit abusive behavior C. Include theological diversity II. Gather in the committed III. Gather in the core
11. OUTSCATTERING I. It´s good for our souls II. It´s good for our church III. It´s good for others
12. SIGHTS I. Our meaningful efforts as prophets II. Our meaningful efforts as priests
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