American Religious Liberalism by Leigh E. Schmidt, Sally M. Promey

By Leigh E. Schmidt, Sally M. Promey

Religious liberalism in the United States has frequently been equated with an ecumenical Protestant institution. in contrast, American non secular Liberalism attracts awareness to the large variety of liberal cultures that shapes America’s spiritual events. The essays accumulated the following push past typical tropes and limits to interrogate spiritual liberalism’s dense cultural leanings through spirituality within the arts, the politics and piety of non secular cosmopolitanism, and the interplay among liberal faith and liberal secularism. Readers will discover a kaleidoscopic view of some of the revolutionary strands of America’s non secular previous and found in this richly provocative volume.

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Miller shared the Whitman Fellowship’s liberal religious agenda, its R e a di ng Poetry R eligiously 27 effort to place Whitman in a spiritual succession running from the Buddha through Jesus and the apostles to the present day. ”29 A vast body of scholarship has examined the relationship between black Protestant churches and the civil rights movement of the 1960s; Miller’s connection with the Whitman Fellowship reveals an alternative—and as yet virtually unstudied—stream within the black liberation movement of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries: a spiritually cosmopolitan approach that drew as heavily on Whitman’s poetry as on the Christian gospels.

Walt Whitman, “Song of Myself,” CPCP, 244–45. 12. Leigh Eric Schmidt, Restless Souls: The Making of Ameri­can Spirituality (New York: HarperSanFrancisco, 2005), 1–23; and Jeffrey J. Kripal, Esalen: America and the Religion of No Religion (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2007), 3–24, 463–68. 13. Walt Whitman, “Elias Hicks,” CPCP, 1221. 14. Laurens Maynard, “The Walt Whitman Fellowship,” Conservator 5 (De­cem­ber 1894): 147. 15. Richard LeGallienne, “Walt Whitman: An Address,” Conservator 9 (March 1898): 4.

Catherine L. Albanese, Ameri­can Spiritualities (Bloom­i ng­ton: Indiana University Press, 2001), 388. Albanese’s A Repub­lic of Mind and Spirit (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2007), an extensive history of metaphysical religion, does not mention Whitman, but it is clear that Whitmanism fits into the capacious category of metaphysical religion as defined by Albanese. 4. Lawrence Buell, “Religion on the Ameri­can Mind,” Ameri­can Literary History 19, no. 1 (spring 2007): 39. 5. Walt Whitman, Notebooks and Unpublished Prose Manuscripts, ed.

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