Good news about the ‘spiritual but not religious’

CNN Belief Blog

Opinion by Linda Mercadante, special to CNN

(CNN) —
Despite the ongoing decline in American religious institutions, the meteoric rise in people who claim to be “spiritual but not religious” should be seen positively — especially by religious people.

To accept this as good news, however, we need to listen to what they are saying, rather than ridicule them as “salad bar spiritualists” or eclectic dabblers.

After spending more than five years speaking with hundreds of “spiritual but not religious” folk across North America, I’ve come to see a certain set of core ideas among them. Because of their common themes, I think it’s fair to refer to them by the acronym: SBNR.

But before we explore what the SBNRs believe, we first need to learn what they protest.

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