Cover image for Finding your religion : when the faith you grew up with has lost its meaning
Finding your religion : when the faith you grew up with has lost its meaning
McLennan, Scotty.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
[San Francisco] : HarperSanFrancisco, [1999]

Physical Description:
xiii, 242 pages ; 25 cm
Subject Term:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
BL624 .M3977 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
BL624 .M3977 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating
BL624 .M3977 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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"Starting with my own experiences in college in the 1960s and early 1970s, I have learned a great deal about how people lose and find their own religion. I've come to see it very much as an ongoing process that never stops. For many people, the faith they grew up with loses its meaning during adolescence. Others who never had any faith in childhood begin exploring religion for the first time in adolescence or young adulthood. I've come to realize that there are identifiable stages of spiritual development that people go through, no matter what their religious tradition is or isn't. Just as we grow emotionally and intellectually over the years, so we grow spiritually, if we allow ourselves.

-- from the book

Tufts University Chaplain Scotty McLennan (the inspiration for Doonesbury's Reverend Scot Sloan) offers an indispensable guidebook to those seeking a new spiritual path or wishing to reconnect to the religion of their youth. He reassures anyone at a spiritual crossroads--those who have become disillusioned with or even abandoned the religion of their youth--that finding a relevant and fulfilling spirituality is a process of understanding one's place in any of six universal stages of faith: Magic, Reality, Dependence, Independence, Interdependence, and Unity. He offers signposts and checklists for determining where readers are own their own spiritual journey, and for helping them grow and develop. By recognizing a progression of steps toward a faith of one's own choosing, McLennan explains, one can more fully open one's soul to its spiritual destiny.

Author Notes

Scotty McLennan has been the Chaplain at Tufts University since 1984. He has been a lecturer at the Harvard Business School since 1988, and he frequently consults on the subject of business ethics with corporations. McLennan was the inspiration for the character of Reverend Scot Sloan in the Doonesbury comic strip. He lives in Milton, Massachusetts.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

McLennan, the Tufts University Chaplain who inspired Doonesbury cartoonist Garry Trudeau's character Reverend Scotty Sloan, shares six steps of a spiritual journey. McLennan targets those who have left the tradition in which they were raised, or those who grew up without any religious background and are now open to a spiritual dimension in their lives. McLennan points out that most people don't get through all the steps and that, often, the steps can intertwine. He sees all religious journeys, be they Bah '¡, Buddhist, Muslim, Hindu, Christian or others, as starting with a beckoning of the "spiritual mountain." Readers take the first step by thinking about faith, by opening themselves to the possibilities. The next step is to choose a certain path (religious leanings) and start walking up the mountain. Readers are then encouraged to join fellow travelers of the same bent and, as they grow in that direction, to encompass journeys from other traditions to enrich their own direction. Prayer and meditation, the next step, help mature the inner being. Finally, McLennan speaks of suffering and rejoicing as two important components in any religion and personal spirituality. This is an entertaining, gentle and affirming book for anyone contemplating such a journey. (Dec.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

McLennan, model for Garry Trudeau's character Rev. Scotty Sloan in "Doonesbury" and longtime chaplain at Tufts University, has written an engaging, easygoing guide and prod for those who want to find or reclaim a sense of religious feeling. McLennan is open to all faithsÄBuddhism and Islam get space, as well as Christianity and JudaismÄand, like many spiritual advisors, he believes in teaching by example and life story. He doesn't reach great depths here, but readers questioning their spiritual life should find him a gentle guide. For most collections of popular religious literature. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Table of Contents

Garry Trudeau
Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Introductionp. xi
The Mountain Beckonsp. 1
Openingp. 9
Thinkingp. 33
Experiencingp. 50
Walkingp. 67
Joiningp. 93
Crossingp. 114
Sittingp. 138
Sufferingp. 158
Rejoicingp. 184
Conclusionp. 205
Appendix A Reading for the Next Steps on Your Pathp. 215
Appendix B Contacts for the Next Steps on Your Pathp. 220
Notesp. 223
Bibliographyp. 230
Indexp. 235