Syllabus: Honors Introduction to Religious Studies

I’ve shared syllabi in the past and I thought I’d do it again this semester. Below is the syllabus for my Honors Introduction to Religion Course this semester. As always, I’d love to hear feedback from folks and feel free to steal this and use it as you see fit. No twitter or blogging this time around-saving that for my upper level seminar.

View this document on Scribd

Why the U.S. State Department Should Take My Introduction to Religious Studies Course

I wrote a piece last week over at about the problems I saw in the U.S. State Department’s new Office of Faith Based Community Initiatives. Here’s a taste:

Yesterday, Secretary of State John Kerry introduced the new Special Advisor of the new Office of Faith-Based Community Initiatives, Shaun Casey. I invite both the Secretary of State and Mr. Casey to read along with my Introductions to Religious Studies course this semester because, from the statements they gave yesterday, both men are dire need of a more nuanced approached to religion. As Kerry himself remarked:

In fact, if I went back to college today, I think I would probably major in comparative religion, because that’s how integrated it is in everything that we are working on and deciding and thinking about in life today.

Well, I invite you to my class Secretary Kerry.

If they took my course Secretary Kerry and Mr. Casey would learn three things.

Read the rest at Medium.

UPDATE: Check out this piece from Gary Laderman on the State Dept. program. He has a similar take but with a different emphasis than mine.

Who is YOUR #HistoricalJesus?

Saturday evening I got to thinking about Jesus because of Ross Douthat. Not the third member of the trinity. Not the Son of Man. Not the Christ. But the “historical Jesus.” You know, the one that scholars are able to discover by searching through the first century sources. There’s a book that you may have heard about recently by a certain author who had an interview on a certain cable news channel that engages in this project. Like other scholars before him he says he can tell us who the REAL historical Jesus REALLY WAS. I summed up my problem with a tweet Saturday night:

(Why must folks always RT the one with typos?)

I then began to muse what MY “historical Jesus” would be like. He’d be awesome.

You get the idea.

Well, other folks began imaging there historical Jesus.

If you can’t get enough #HistoricalJesus, check out this storify: “The Very Best of #HistoricalJesus”


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,786 other followers

Powered by