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Stages of Faith: The Psychology of Human…

Stages of Faith: The Psychology of Human Development (edition 1995)

by James W. Fowler

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765319,152 (3.89)3
Dr. James Fowler has asked these questions, and others like them, of nearly six hundred people. He has talked with men, women, and children of all ages, from four to eighty-eight, including Jews, Catholics, Protestants, agnostics, and atheists. In many cases, the interviews became in-depth conversations that provided rare, intimate glimpses into the various ways our lives have meaning and purpose, windows into what this books calls faith. Faith, as approached here, is not necessarily religious, nor is it to be equated with belief. Rather, faith is a person's way of leaning into and making sense of life. More verb that noun, faith is the dynamic system of images, values, and commitments that guide one's life. It is thus universal: everyone who chooses to go on living operated by some basic faith. Building on the contributions of such key thinkers as Piaget, Erikson, and Kohlberg, Fowler draws on a wide range of scholarship, literature, and firsthand research to present expertly and engagingly the six stages that emerge in working out the meaning of our lives--from the intuitive, imitative faith of childhood through conventional and then more independent faith to the universalizing, self-transcending faith of full maturity. Stages of Faith helps us to understand our own pilgrimage of faith, the passages of our own quest for meaning and value.… (more)
Title:Stages of Faith: The Psychology of Human Development
Authors:James W. Fowler
Info:HarperSanFrancisco (1995), Paperback, 352 pages
Collections:Your library

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Stages of Faith: The Psychology of Human Development and the Quest for Meaning by James W. Fowler (Author)



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There is no concept of God in a "Faith". [251] Each "stage" of faith "has the potential for wholeness, grace and integrity and for strengths sufficient for either life's blows or blessings." [274]. Conversion as a recapitulation of previous stages in the life/faith journey. [290] Brings to mind the author's quote of Luke 18:8: "But when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?" [292]
  keylawk | Dec 31, 2018 |
Does life have meaning or purpose? When you are most discouraged, what gets you up in he morning to return to the struggle? When and where do you experience wonder,awe, or ecstasy?
  PendleHillLibrary | Apr 23, 2016 |
This is a classic! The scholarship is readily apparent. Whether or not you agree with the stages described in this book, you will certainly be challenged to THINK and THAT makes all the difference!

The fact that Fowler separates "Faith" from religion is CRITICAL, and will, I will bet, trip up many readers that are already 'prejudiced' to think in a particular way. But stick with the book to the end and make up your mind AFTER you have read it cover-to-cover and you will be rewarded with new perspective that transcends the "religious categories" to which faith is often related.

This book helps one develop an understanding that one's "faith" development most often goes hand-in-hand with "cognitive" development, though one may be "arrested" at any stage in faith development by NOT experiencing "crises" that challenge one's previous stage that would cause most people to re-think their present narrow belief system and incorporate new ideas. Often, particular religious or secular organizations and institutions limit one's experience of such crises by limiting one's exposure to the ideas, struggles and opinions of others that would normally cause one to have to struggle with and widen one's beliefs to make sense of the world.

This book is much more than what I can summarize simply in such few sentences; that is why it is very worthwhile reading!
  motjebben | Sep 11, 2008 |
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